Yet more sad news, just reported in the forums by @kevinsoulman the sad news that Robert "Big Sonny" Edwards of The Intruders has passed away
PHILADELPHIA (AP) — An original member of the pioneering Philadelphia-based soul group The Intruders has died. Robert "Big Sonny" Edwards was 74.
Edwards died Saturday at a Philadelphia hospital after suffering a heart attack at his home. His death was announced Tuesday by music producers Kenneth Gamble and Leon Huff.
After forming in 1960 as a doo-wop group, The Intruders signed with Gamble and Huff in 1966 and helped define the smooth, soulful Philadelphia Sound. Their 1968 smash, "Cowboys to Girls," topped the R&B charts and was the first hit song for Gamble and Huff.
The original lineup of The Intruders disbanded in 1975.
Gamble and Huff say Edwards and the rest of The Intruders helped launch their career as a producing team.
Edwards is survived by his wife, a son and two grandchildren.
An obituary can be read on the philly.com website, a preview clip features below and a link to the article follows this
In his mind's eye, Jerry Blavat can see the members of the 1960s-70s soul and R&B quartet the Intruders. They are still passing time in Philly arcades, using their last bits of pocket change listening to jukeboxes and playing pinball, and learning to harmonize for the first time.
For many people, the longtime Philly-area DJ said, the Intruders' music still represents growing up in the city.
"It's music that people never forget, and it's music with the lyrics that they relate to," said Blavat, host of the WXPN-FM show The Geator's Rock & Roll, Rhythm & Blues Express. "The real sound of the Intruders was Big Sonny."
Blavat was referring to Robert "Big Sonny" Edwards, an original member of the Philadelphia-based vocal group. Edwards, 77, died Saturday after suffering a heart attack at his Philadelphia home, according to a news release from Gamble-Huff Music, the group's producers.