Jump to content
  • Sign Up
Mark Holmes

Teddy Pendergrass

Recommended Posts

PHILADELPHIA - Teddy Pendergrass, who became R&B's reigning sex symbol in the 1970s and '80s with his forceful, masculine voice and passionate love ballads and later became an inspirational figure after suffering a devastating car accident that left him paralyzed, died Wednesday at age 59.

The singer's son, Teddy Pendergrass II, said his father died at a hospital in suburban Philadelphia. The singer underwent colon cancer surgery eight months ago and had "a difficult recovery," his son said.

"To all his fans who loved his music, thank you," his son said. "He will live on through his music."

Pendergrass suffered a spinal cord injury and was paralyzed from the waist down in the 1982 car accident. He spent six months in a hospital but returned to recording the next year with the album "Love Language."

He returned to the stage at the Live Aid concert in 1985, performing from his wheelchair.

Pendergrass later founded the Teddy Pendergrass Alliance, an organization whose mission is to encourage and help people with spinal cord injuries achieve their maximum potential in education, employment, housing, productivity and independence, according to its Web site.

Pendergrass, who was born in Philadelphia on March 26, 1950, gained popularity first as a member of Harold Melvin & the Blue Notes.

In 1971, the group signed a record deal with the legendary writer/producers Kenny Gamble and Leon Huff. The group released it first single, "I Miss You," in 1972 and then released "If You Don't Know Me by Now," which was nominated for a Grammy Award.

Pendergrass quit the group in 1975 and embarked on a solo career in 1976. It was his solo hits that brought him his greatest fame. With songs such as "Love T.K.O.," "Close the Door" and "I Don't Love You Anymore," he came to define a new era of black male singers with his powerful, aggressive vocals that spoke to virility, not vulnerability.

His lyrics were never coarse, as those of later male R&B stars would be, but they had a sensual nature that bordered on erotic without being explicit.

"Turn Off the Lights" was a tune that perhaps best represented the many moods of Pendergrass " tender and coaxing yet strong as the song reached its climax.

Pendergrass, the first black male singer to record five consecutive multi-platinum albums, made women swoon with each note, and his concerts were a testament to that adulation, with infamous stories of women throwing their underwear on stage for his affection.

Following the car accident, it was 19 years before Pendergrass resumed performing concerts. He made his return on Memorial Day weekend in 2001, with two sold-out shows in Atlantic City, N.J.

Pendergrass is survived by his son, two daughters, his wife, his mother and nine grandchildren.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest t5vespa

PHILADELPHIA - Teddy Pendergrass, who became R&B's reigning sex symbol in the 1970s and '80s with his forceful, masculine voice and passionate love ballads and later became an inspirational figure after suffering a devastating car accident that left him paralyzed, died Wednesday at age 59.

The singer's son, Teddy Pendergrass II, said his father died at a hospital in suburban Philadelphia. The singer underwent colon cancer surgery eight months ago and had "a difficult recovery," his son said.

"To all his fans who loved his music, thank you," his son said. "He will live on through his music."

Pendergrass suffered a spinal cord injury and was paralyzed from the waist down in the 1982 car accident. He spent six months in a hospital but returned to recording the next year with the album "Love Language."

He returned to the stage at the Live Aid concert in 1985, performing from his wheelchair.

Pendergrass later founded the Teddy Pendergrass Alliance, an organization whose mission is to encourage and help people with spinal cord injuries achieve their maximum potential in education, employment, housing, productivity and independence, according to its Web site.

Pendergrass, who was born in Philadelphia on March 26, 1950, gained popularity first as a member of Harold Melvin & the Blue Notes.

In 1971, the group signed a record deal with the legendary writer/producers Kenny Gamble and Leon Huff. The group released it first single, "I Miss You," in 1972 and then released "If You Don't Know Me by Now," which was nominated for a Grammy Award.

Pendergrass quit the group in 1975 and embarked on a solo career in 1976. It was his solo hits that brought him his greatest fame. With songs such as "Love T.K.O.," "Close the Door" and "I Don't Love You Anymore," he came to define a new era of black male singers with his powerful, aggressive vocals that spoke to virility, not vulnerability.

His lyrics were never coarse, as those of later male R&B stars would be, but they had a sensual nature that bordered on erotic without being explicit.

"Turn Off the Lights" was a tune that perhaps best represented the many moods of Pendergrass " tender and coaxing yet strong as the song reached its climax.

Pendergrass, the first black male singer to record five consecutive multi-platinum albums, made women swoon with each note, and his concerts were a testament to that adulation, with infamous stories of women throwing their underwear on stage for his affection.

Following the car accident, it was 19 years before Pendergrass resumed performing concerts. He made his return on Memorial Day weekend in 2001, with two sold-out shows in Atlantic City, N.J.

Pendergrass is survived by his son, two daughters, his wife, his mother and nine grandchildren.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So many tears this week, both for Sandra Wright and now Teddy P.

Tears of sadness tinged with tears of joy for the memories left behind.

I'm so so sad.

Karenxxx

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

PHILADELPHIA - Teddy Pendergrass, who became R&B's reigning sex symbol in the 1970s and '80s with his forceful, masculine voice and passionate love ballads and later became an inspirational figure after suffering a devastating car accident that left him paralyzed, died Wednesday at age 59.

Such sad news, as a young kid growing up in the 70s that Philadelphia sound was so much a part of our lives.

The message is enjoy life to the full, plan for tomorrow but don't worry too much about it.

Chris L

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

HE WAS A TALENTED CHURCH SINGER-YET ANOTHER SOUL SINGER WHO STARTED AT AN EARLY AGE SINGING IN THE CHURCH -ALL OF HIS EXTENTED FAMILY WERE SOUTHERN AND HE SPEND HAPPY SUMMERS VISITING THEM IN SOUTH CAROLINA.

TEDDY PENDERGRASS LIFE IS A SONG WORTH SINGING PIR -

BAZ A

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

  Sign up/in to remove

TEDDY PENDERGRASS - TURN OUT THE LIGHTS - TEDDY LIVE LP -

BAZ A

Tell ya ,...many a good night have been had with this track on...in the background!!!!!:whistling:Delxxxx

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest garv

Like so many others on here, Teddy has been there right from the start of my love affair with soul music & one of my favorite artists. For my money one of the true greats in black American music.

RIP Teddy

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

An absolute legend, one of the first big concerts I ever seen that turned me onto just soul, massive voice, massive personality, colossus of a man both in stature and talent. And so sexy, even from a straight mans view!

Just so sad, will play all his albums over the next few days and remember him pre accident.

Sad sad day.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

How very sad. He's been very fragile for a long time now and you could hear that in "My People" which came out in 2007. He's definitely one of the all time greats and in my top 10 male vocalists of all time. All his Philly stuff was superb and he also had some fantastic moments later, notably the Joy LP in 1988. From dancers like "You Can't Hide From Yourself" to wonderful tearjerking ballads like "The Whole Town's Laughing At Me", he really was a legend. RIP Teddy.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Couldn't agree more, this has left me quite numb.

RIP Teddy....you are a legend.

KTF

Baz

An absolute legend, one of the first big concerts I ever seen that turned me onto just soul, massive voice, massive personality, colossus of a man both in stature and talent. And so sexy, even from a straight mans view!

Just so sad, will play all his albums over the next few days and remember him pre accident.

Sad sad day.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Like many on here - Teddy Pendergraass was one of the very, very first 'big' black voices to stick in my mind - his vocal part in 'Let's Clean Up The Ghetto' blew the others outta the water...and one of the first slowies I also loved, loved, loved was 'The Whole Town's Laughing At Me' - stunning tune...my cousin, Caroline, had that on constant rotation when it first came out.

A truly gifted singer and I now need to rifle thru a few Philly LPs here and dig out a few tunes on him...

Gad Bless and all that..............:lol:sad.gif:(

(remember Lenny Henry's 'Love God' tribute - forget the name - hairy chests and comedy beard - that was based mostly on Teddy Penderfrass!! Was it Theophoilis T Wildebeest or summat...? Funny stuff.... )

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

one of the greatest live performances ever recorded (from Soul!):

http://www.youtube.c...h?v=aOZuyAkj7Bc

Totally agree mate, the very essence of soul music, as already mentioned a terrible week for music with Willie Mitchell, Sandra Wright and Earl Gaines recently departed. Thankfully we have their wonderful legacy to remind us of all the joy they've brought us :sad:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just seen this on the BBC breakfast news

A love TKO-what a great song ! Teddy was on my "Hit list" to see-sadly never to become true.

He triumphed over his disability still recording and performing. He has left a huge body of quality music behind for us all to enjoy-thank you Teddy

RIP

Rob & Karen

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

RIP Teddy.

Respect for a job well done sir.

You have left us with a wonderful legacy.

"Be Sure" off his self titled 1977 album is a masterpiece.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Comment now!

Comments are members only

Sign Up

Join Soul Source - Free & easy!

Sign up now!

Sign in

Sign in here.

Sign in now!

Adverts



×

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.