Singer Conny Van Dyke, who starred in ‘W.W. and the Dixie Dancekings’ dead at 78

The singer was the one of the first white artists to sign with Motown Records.

Singer Conny Van Dyke, one of the first white artists signed to the Motown label who also starred in the 1975 film “W.W. and the Dancekings,” died Saturday. She was 78.

>> Read more trending news

The singer’s son, Bronson Page, told Variety that her mother died in Los Angeles due to complications of vascular dementia.

Van Dyke also survived colon cancer and a stroke, according to the entertainment news website.

Van Dyke was born Sept. 28, 1945, on the Delmarva Peninsula in Nassawadox, Virginia, according to The Detroit native got her start in music working with Wheelsville Records before signing with Motown Records in 1961.

Her first two singles, “Oh Freddy” written by Smokey Robinson, and “It Hurt Me Too,” written and recorded by Marvin Gaye, were released in 1963, according to Variety.

Van Dyke starred in the 1969 film “Hell’s Angels ‘69,” according to

She later released a pair of country albums, “Conny Van Dyke” and “Conny Van Dyke Sings for You,” Variety reported.

Van Dyke’s signature movie roles came in 1975. She starred with Burt Reynolds and Art Carney in “W.W. and the Dixie Dancekings,” and played singer Susan Barrett in “Framed,” which starred Joe Don Baker, according to the entertainment news website.

Van Dyke made several appearances in television series, including roles on “Adam-12,” “Barbary Coast” and “Nakia.” She also made several appearances on game shows like “The Hollywood Squares,” “Match Game,” “Tattletale” and “The Gong Show,” Variety reported.

Van Dyke suffered a stroke in 2008. She was married six times, according to

She is survived by her son.

Comments on this article