We’ve learned that Eduard Khil, aka Mr. Trololo, whose 1976 Soviet TV performance of the song ‘I Am Glad, ‘Cause I’m Finally Returning Back Home’ became a unlikely viral video hit in late 2009, has died at age 77.

Khil was a big star in the Soviet Union during the ’60s and ’70s, however his music fell out of favor in the ’80s when Russians were exposed to more music from the West.

Khil's story is quite an interesting one. When he was a child, his kindergarten was bombed and in the hysterics that ensued, he was separated from his mother, who was his sole care taker. He ended up being evacuated from the bombed out school and sent to a children's home that didn't have basic necessities, including food. Despite the hard times, he still loved performing and would often sing for wounded soldiers at a nearby veteran's hospital. After his home town was liberated from the Nazis, he was actually reunited with his mom and went on to finish school and began singing in the opera. He has toured the globe and also taught young music students.

He was reportedly baffled when he first learned that ‘I Am Glad, ‘Cause I’m Finally Returning Back Home’ had become an internet hit, but quickly came to embrace the new attention. Khil’s singing style was what made the song such a hit thirty-plus years later. Last spring, we brought you this catchy little ditty as part of our Funny Friday Video series. 

He won many awards and starred in five films, including a cameo in Family Guy in 2011. The stroke was the cause of his death, according to his manager Tatyana Mamedova.