Classic soul-funk singer and guitarist Bobby Womack has been diagnosed with colon cancer, according to bassist Bootsy Collins. The 68-year-old originally rose to prominence due to his association with Sam Cooke, who had signed him to his SAR Records imprint after seeing him perform with the Womack Brothers in the 1960s, before going on to have a long and successful solo career.

Womack To Get Digital, Best-Of Releases

Collins, the bassist from legendary funk bands like James Brown's JBs and Parliament-Funkadelic, posted to Facebook Saturday (March 24) that Womack was in the hospital fighting pneumonia. He then yesterday added that Womack had been diagnosed with colon cancer.

"I JUST SPOKE TO OUR FRIEND BOBBY WOMACK," Collins posted. "He Wanted You All to Know That He Loves You & Thxs for the Prayers. Docs Says He Is In 1st Stage of Colon Cancer, He is Very Up Beat About His Future, we laughed & joked before we hung up."

Womack will be releasing his first solo record since the turn of the century with The Bravest Man in the Universe on XL Recordings, scheduled to come out June 12. The album is being produced by Damon Albarn and Richard Russell, and will feature collaborations with Lana del Rey, among others. The first single "Please Forgive My Heart" is out now.