Sad news for fans of Black music: Soul legend and longtime Temptations lead singer Dennis Edwards has passed away. He was 74 years old.
Edwards was born in 1943 in Fairfield, Alabama, which is just outside Birmingham. Edwards began singing at two years old, and eventually became choir director of a local church pastored by his father.
By that time, the Edwards family had moved to Detroit and after performing with the legendary old skool Gospel group The Mighty Clouds of Joy, Edwards caught the attention of Motown execs and in 1968, joined The Temptations after David Ruffin departed the group.
Edwards would be the group’s lead singer up until the day he died, though he recorded several solo projects in between many years with the iconic group.
One of his most memorable songs outside The Temptations was recorded with Siedah Garrett: “Don”t Look Any Further” is a timeless classic that is considered one of the top Urban hits of all-time.
Edwards was considered a hearthtrob in the 1960s and 1970s and one of the ladies who was enamored with him was the Queen Of Soul herself, Aretha Franklin, who wrote a 1972 hit song, “Day Dreaming”, about Edwards.
Edwards sang lead on some of The Temptations’ most memorable hits, including, “I Can’t Get Next To You”, and “Papa Was A Rolling Stone”.
Edwards died from what has been described as a long-term illness.
Even more sadly, he passed away two days shy of what would have been his 75th birthday. He died in Chicago yesterday at an area hospital, according to CBS News.
Edwards is survived by his daughter, Issa Pointer, whom he shared with Pointer Sisters singer Ruth Pointer.
R.I.P. Dennis Edwards.