Victor Edward Willis (born July 1, 1951) is a singer, songwriter, actor; and most known as the original lead singer of the disco group Village People. His persona was the Cop and Naval Officer.
The son of a Baptist preacher, he developed his singing skills in his father's church. With training in acting and dance, he went to New York and joined the prestigious Negro Ensemble Company. He appeared in many musicals and plays, including the original Broadway production of The Wiz in 1976 and subsequently, the Australian production.
Willis also had written and recorded several demos of music in the mid-1970s and was eventually introduced to French disco producer Jacques Morali. Morali, who dubbed Willis the "young man with the big voice", approached Willis and said, "I had a dream that you sang lead vocals on my album and it went very, very big".