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NEWS
March 21, 2013
Bobbie Smith, 76, a former lead singer of the Spinners, has died in Orlando, Fla. A statement released Monday by the manager of the rhythm-and-blues group said Mr. Smith died Saturday of complications from pneumonia and influenza. The statement said he had been diagnosed with lung cancer in November. Mr. Smith was the group's original lead singer and was the voice on its first hit, "That's What Girls Are Made For. " The group earned nearly a dozen gold records and a half-dozen Grammy nominations.
NEWS
November 14, 2012 | BY JOHN F. MORRISON, Daily News Staff Writer morrisj@phillynews.com, 215-854-5573
HERE'S HOW A FAN commented on a couple of hit songs by Major Harris: " 'Love Won't Let Me Wait' and 'I Believe in Love' were two of his biggest hits that we played so much, my parents wanted to break the records. " Such devotion was a typical reaction of R&B fans to the lead singer of Philadelphia's own Delfonics, a group graced by the Major's dulcet tones in the 1970s. He was a major player in the success of the iconic "Philadelphia Sound," as promoted by the songwriting and producing team of Kenny Gamble and Leon Huff and their Philadelphia International Records.
NEWS
November 22, 2012
Rhythm-and-blues singer Billy Scott, 70, died from pancreatic and liver cancer Saturday at his home in Charlotte, N.C. Born Peter Pendleton in Huntington, W.Va., he sang with various groups while in the Army. After he was discharged in 1964, he changed his name, and with his wife, Barbara, began recording in 1966 as the Prophets. The band's first gold record was 1968's "I Got the Fever. " Other hits included "California" and "Seaside Love" as the Georgia Prophets. The group recorded a number of hits in the 1970s in the beach-music genre, a regional variant of R&B. In 1999, Mr. Scott was inducted into the North Carolina Music Hall of Fame.
NEWS
December 29, 2012
Ray Collins, a singer whose dispute with one guitarist led him to hire another, Frank Zappa, with whom he would go on to form the avant-garde rock group the Mothers of Invention, died Monday in Pomona, Calif. The death of Mr. Collins, who was in his mid-70s, followed his admission to Pomona Valley Hospital Medical Center a week earlier for cardiac arrest, according to local news accounts. Mr. Collins entered the national spotlight with the Mothers of Invention, an outlet for Zappa's unique sense of humor and challenging, unorthodox compositions.
NEWS
August 13, 2011
Jani Lane, 47, former lead singer of the metal rock band Warrant, has died in Los Angeles. Officer Sara Faden said Mr. Lane's body was found Thursday in a Woodland Hills hotel. She had no immediate information on the cause or circumstances of his death. Assistant Chief Coroner Ed Winter said Friday that an autopsy did not reveal what killed the rocker and that the cause would be determined after results from toxicology and other tests are received. With his long blond hair and tight leather outfits, Mr. Lane, born John Kennedy Oswald in Akron, Ohio, embodied the excess of 1980s "hair metal" rock bands.
NEWS
February 6, 2013
Reg Presley, 71, lead singer of the Troggs on hit songs including the garage-rock classic "Wild Thing," died Monday at his home in Andover, England, after a yearlong bout with lung cancer. Mr. Presley and the Troggs scored their breakthrough hit in the early days of the British music invasion. The song, a cover of a version by Jordan Christopher and the Wild Ones, was later picked up not only by garage bands the world over - the lead guitar riffs were easily copied - but also by icons like Jimi Hendrix and Bruce Springsteen.
NEWS
November 20, 2012 | ASSOCIATED PRESS
CHARLOTTE, N.C. - Rhythm and blues singer Billy Scott has died in North Carolina at age 70. Scott died Saturday of pancreatic and liver cancer at his home in Charlotte, said Bill Kopald with the North Carolina Music Hall of Fame. Scott, who was born Peter Pendleton in Huntington, W. Va., sang with various groups while in the Army. After he was discharged in 1964, he changed his name, and with his wife, Barbara, in 1966 began recording as The Prophets. Their first gold record was 1968's "I Got the Fever.
ENTERTAINMENT
July 13, 2012 | By CHUCK DARROW and Daily News Staff Writer
This is getting to be routine. About four years ago, Chris Squire of the veteran progressive-rock band Yes called to explain why and how Benoit David had replaced original lead singer Jon Anderson in the then-40-year-old outfit. Recently, Squire, the group's charter bassist, was back on the blower, this time talking about David's replacement, Jon Davison, who over the next five days, will be introduced to local fans as Yes performs Friday at Tropicana Atlantic City and Wednesday at Sands Casino Resort in Bethlehem.
NEWS
September 1, 2004
A Convention Notebook item Tuesday gave an incorrect age for folk singer Pete Seeger. He is 85.
NEWS
February 13, 2012 | ASSOCIATED PRESS
LOS ANGELES - Coroner's officials said yesterday that they wouldn't release any information about an autopsy on singer Whitney Houston. The singer, 48, was found in the bathtub of her room Saturday at the Beverly Hilton Hotel, but Assistant Chief Coroner Ed Winter declined to say anything about the room's condition or any evidence investigators recovered. He said that there were no obvious signs of trauma, but that officials were not ruling out any cause of death until they have toxicology results, which will take weeks to obtain.
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ARTICLES BY DATE
NEWS
February 27, 2015 | BY BETH D'ADDONO, For the Daily News
WHEN ERIN Dickins eats steak frites , she always thinks of Leonard Cohen. Dickins, a founding member of the Manhattan Transfer, was playing a festival gig in Paris with the vocal group and the storied poet/songwriter in 1974. Afterward, Cohen directed them to a little bistro off the Champs Elysees, and she tried the French classic - topped with butter, but of course. "I've loved it ever since," said Dickins, who divides her time between homes in Phoenixville and on the Eastern Shore.
NEWS
February 13, 2015 | BY JONATHAN TAKIFF, Daily News Staff Writer takiffj@phillynews.com, 215-854-5960
NOTHING BUMS out soul singer extraordinaire Sharon Jones. Not walking away from the Grammys without her due. Or watching coattail riders soar higher then she has. Heavens alive, Jones even makes light of her recurring bouts with cancer, readily bringing up the topic in interviews and working the theme into her stage show as a flag waver for resilience and trust in a master plan. "With all I've been through, I feel good, glad to still be here, glad to be working and having fun, glad to be getting recognition after all these years," Jones shared in a recent chat prompted by her concert tonight (um, Friday the 13th)
NEWS
February 13, 2015 | By Molly Eichel
ANTHONY RILEY , a Philly street singer who made national news in 2007 after he was arrested for disorderly conduct for singingĀ  Sam Cooke songs in Rittenhouse Square, is going for television glory. Riley auditioned for the eighth season of NBC's "The Voice," which premieres Feb. 23. Riley at least made it to the blind-auditions phase (that's where the judges turn their chairs for the contestants they like). NBC allows contestants who have made it to this televised round to advertise that they auditioned for the show.
NEWS
February 4, 2015 | BY JOHN F. MORRISON, Daily News Staff Writer morrisj@phillynews.com, 215-854-5573
PHILADELPHIA'S reputation as a center of gospel music owed much to people like Irma Beattie Brown Coleman. Irma and the late David Collier formed United Gospel Singers, which performed at churches throughout the Philadelphia area and in other cities on the East Coast in the '60s and '70s. Among her innovations was the introduction of young boys and girls as soloists at well-attended gospel programs, many at Tindley Temple United Methodist Church on South Broad Street. She organized numerous other gospel groups over the years and served as a teacher seeking to bring out the nascent talents of young singers.
NEWS
January 27, 2015 | By Bonnie L. Cook, Inquirer Staff Writer
Stella Ferrari Conaway, 92, of West Chester, a respected voice teacher and performer, died Thursday, Jan. 8, her 61st wedding anniversary, of Alzheimer's disease at Simpson Meadows, Downingtown. Mrs. Conaway was a trained soprano, and her husband, Wayne Elias Conaway, a trained tenor; the two performed classical music and opera duets up and down the East Coast. The venues were local auditoriums where they often sang to benefit music clubs, he said. She earned academic degrees in music from the Philadelphia Conservatory of Music - now part of the University of the Arts - and joined the faculty of the music department at West Chester University.
ENTERTAINMENT
January 14, 2015 | By Peter Dobrin, Inquirer Music Critic
If leaders of the Philadelphia Singers are ready to throw in the towel, the singers themselves aren't. A core group of members, plus assistant conductor Brian Schkeeper, says it is forming its own successor organization - a new 150-voice symphonic choir. The effort is being led by six or seven members, and already about 80 current singers have signed on to sing on, says Schkeeper. "I think it's an artistic imperative to continue professional music-making," he says, referring to the Philadelphia Singers' pioneering role as a substantially paid, rather than all-volunteer, choir.
NEWS
December 30, 2014 | BY DAN GERINGER, Daily News Staff Writer geringd@phillynews.com, 215-854-5961
BRIANNA CASH grew up on 3rd Street near Roosevelt Boulevard, and although her soulful songs might someday carry her far from North Philly, her old Feltonville neighborhood will always feel like home. "You know that big three-story house on the corner that looks haunted?" the 22-year-old singer/songwriter said, laughing. "It's the huge house across the street from the corner store that's sometimes yellow, sometimes green, and I remember it being red once, too," Cash said. "I grew up in that house.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 17, 2014 | By Peter Dobrin, Inquirer Music Critic
In the wake of leadership changes and the loss of funding from a major supporter, the Philadelphia Singers has decided to cease operations. The city's pioneering professional chorus will sing its last notes at a May concert, and then the organization will dissolve. The chorus was founded in 1972. The Philadelphia Singers' board voted to shut down after learning in November that the William Penn Foundation had turned down a request for a three-year grant for general support; after its executive director resigned; and in view of $125,000 in debt, said Michael Martin Mills, board vice president.
NEWS
December 8, 2014 | By Sofiya Ballin, Inquirer Staff Writer
Jazmine Sullivan stands in the doorway of her parents' Northeast Philadelphia home. Her curly tresses frame a broad smile as she waves goodbye to her makeup artist and her stylist. With a rehearsal in a few hours, Sullivan, 27, goes inside and settles into an armchair in front of the fireplace. Relaxed, but slightly guarded, she readies herself for the questions she knows are coming about her three-year absence. After an abusive relationship that stopped her rising music career in its tracks, the Grammy-nominated singer/songwriter is easing back into rehearsals, shows, interviews, with a new outlook.
NEWS
November 23, 2014 | By Bonnie L. Cook, Inquirer Staff Writer
Miriam E. McBride Rawley, 90, of Tacony, a mother and singer, died Friday, Nov. 14, of Alzheimer's disease at the Philadelphia Protestant Home in Lawncrest. Born in 1924 in Philadelphia, Mrs. Rawley lost her mother early. She and her four siblings grew up with their father, Francis McBride, and stepmother, Maude Whelan, on a horse farm in Hilltown, Bucks County. After the family moved back to the city, Mrs. Rawley became a member of the first graduating class of St. Hubert High School in 1942.
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