Actor Sherman Hemsley was working on funky, electronic music album in recent years

Close friend remembers Sherman Hemsley

EL PASO, Texas - Actors are known to dabble in music.

Sherman Hemsley, who died in his El Paso home on Tuesday, was no different.

While he gained fame and acclaim as an actor, he also had a heart for music.

And not just for the gospel music he sang in church as a child or big band music he sang in recent years.

Hemsley began making funky, electronic, loops-based music over the past decade.
Advances in music programs and software allowed him to create the soundscapes in his own home.

He found a kindred spirit in musician Billy Townes when the two met in the late ‘90s in Los Angeles during a National Association of Musician Merchants conference where Townes was demonstrating a program.

Hemsley asked Townes about making loops with the program and their friendship took off from there.

Once back in El Paso, the two kept in touch and over the years they would sometimes hang out and even watch Dallas Cowboys football games together.

They also would discuss and play music here and there.

Hemsley sent Townes a CD of instrumental music and had plans to record vocals over it with Townes as the producer.

"We just never got that far," Townes said.

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