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'Wild Thing' band the Troggs' lead singer Reg Presley dies

The Troggs' second album,
The Troggs' second album, "Trogglodynamite."
badgreeb Records/Flickr Creative Commons

The lead singer of the Troggs, the band behind songs like “Wild Thing,” “With A Girl Like You” and “Love is All Around,” died Monday, the BBC reports. Reg Presley was 71 years old.

They began in the United Kingdom in the early 1960s, but made a splash Stateside with help from Los Angeles-based record label Fontana Records, which released the smash hit “Wild Thing” and other later Troggs records.

Presley died after a series of strokes and dealing with lung cancer, according to music publicist Keith Altham, the BBC reports. The Troggs had continued until Presley’s retirement due to cancer last year.

Movie lovers may have another reason to love the Troggs — along with the frequent use of their songs on film soundtracks, “Love Is All Around” formed the basis for the ballsy, goofy, faux commercial take on the song “Christmas Is All Around” from the recent holiday perennial, “Love Actually.”

Check out character “Billy Mack” and his failed attempts at recording the song, as he just can’t get that Troggs original out of his head:

A cover of “Love Is All Around” by the band Wet Wet Wet also proved a huge success in the U.K., spending 15 weeks at number one while appearing on the soundtrack to “Four Weddings And A Funeral,” which the BBC obituary notes allowed Presley to pursue his true love: an interest in crop circles and UFOs. It led to a book he wrote about the paranormal in 2002, “Wild Things They Don’t Tell Us.”