Showing posts with label artist deaths. Show all posts
Showing posts with label artist deaths. Show all posts

Tuesday, February 20, 2024

Bing Worthington, Brother of Snoop Dogg, Passes Away at 44

Photo Credit: Instagram/Snoopdogg
Bing Worthington, the younger brother of iconic rapper Snoop Dogg, passed away at the age of 44 on Friday.

Snoop Dogg, 52, whose birth name is Calvin Broadus Jr., shared the heartbreaking news through a series of Instagram tributes, expressing profound grief and reminiscing on cherished moments with his late brother.

In one post, Snoop Dogg shared a photo featuring himself, Worthington, and their nephew Rollin Carter, with a caption adorned with emotive emojis.

Another tribute showcased a video capturing Snoop and Worthington reminiscing amidst family members at a cemetery, evoking memories of shared laughter and camaraderie. "Always made us laugh πŸ’™πŸ™πŸΎπŸ˜’ u bac with moms," Snoop Dogg captioned the post.

Amidst the somber reflections, Snoop Dogg shared a family portrait brimming with smiles and joy, bidding farewell to his brother with a heartfelt message: "Until we meet again ☹️πŸ˜”πŸ˜’πŸ™πŸΎπŸ•Š️."

While the cause of Worthington’s passing remains undisclosed, authorities from the Orange County Sheriff’s Department in California, confirmed ongoing investigations awaiting the results of toxicology and autopsy reports.

Worthington played a pivotal role in Snoop Dogg’s professional endeavors, contributing to various aspects of his brother's business ventures. From collaborating on the launch of Snoop's skateboard brand to pivotal roles in documentary productions and label mergers, Bing's entrepreneurial spirit and dedication were indispensable.

Worthington served as his brother's tour manager and managed the Snoop Dogg Skateboards brand. He co-founded Dogg Records, a Canadian record label, and served as the executive producer for the documentary Bigg Snoop Dogg: Raw ‘N Uncut Vol. 1, released in 2003.

He also briefly ventured into music himself, manifesting his passion for music in the release of the album Liquid Cocaine with his rap group, Lifestyle.

The family's mourning unfolds amidst other recent hardships, including health challenges faced by Snoop Dogg’s daughter Cori Broadus, who battles lupus and recently suffered a stroke. These difficulties compound the grief of the passing of their beloved mother, Beverly Tate, in October 2021.

Thursday, November 2, 2023

Michael Jackson Reigns as Highest-Paid Deceased Celebrity of 2023

Constru-centroCC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons
In a remarkable resurgence, the late 'King of Pop,' Michael Jackson, has reestablished his reign as the world's highest-paid deceased celebrity for the year 2023, according to Forbes magazine's annual list released on Tuesday. With a staggering estimated income of $115 million, Jackson's return to the top spot marks the first time in four years that he has dominated the rankings.

Elvis Presley, Jackson's late father-in-law, closely follows, securing the second position with estimated earnings of $100 million. The list also features an illustrious lineup of other departed legends, including Bob Marley, Prince, John Lennon and Whitney Houston, collectively amassing an approximate $470 million in earnings over the past year. Notably, this figure represents a significant 70% increase from 2022.

These rankings were meticulously determined based on pre-tax earnings derived from sales, licensing deals, streams, and other sources of income spanning from October 1, 2022, to September 30, 2023.

Full List of Highest-Paid Deceased Celebrities in 2023:

US singer, Michael Jackson – $115 million
US singer and actor, Elvis Presley – $100 million
US keyboardist, Ray Manzarek – $45 million
US cartoonist, Dr. Seuss – $40 million
US cartoonist, Charles M. Schulz – $30 million
US singer, Prince – $30 million
US singer, Whitney Houston – $30 million
British singer, John Lennon – $22 million
Jamaican singer, Bob Marley – $16 million
US singer, Bing Crosby – $14 million
British singer, George Harrison – $14 million
US golfer, Arnold Palmer – $10 million
US singer, Marilyn Monroe – $10 million

'Thriller' Resurfaces as a Halloween Hit

Halloween witnessed the haunting revival of one of Michael Jackson's most iconic tracks, "Thriller." The spine-chilling masterpiece reclaimed its throne at the No. 1 spot on Billboard's R&B Digital Song Sales chart, demonstrating that even after decades, its allure continues to captivate music enthusiasts.

The R&B Digital Song Sales chart tracks the bestselling R&B songs in the United States. "Thriller" sold over 2,400 copies during the recent tracking period, marking the sixth time it has ascended to the chart's zenith, with the Halloween season consistently propelling its resurgence.

"Thriller" isn't content with merely topping the R&B Digital Song Sales chart; it has also ascended to No. 11 on the Digital Song Sales ranking, spanning various musical genres. As Halloween festivities continue, "Thriller" is poised to ascend even further on the charts, keeping alive the enchanting spirit of this timeless masterpiece.

Thursday, August 17, 2023

Atlanta Rapper Dopeboy Ra, Aka Young Capone, Passes Away at 35

Photo via Instagram/dopeboyra
The hip-hop community in Atlanta is mourning the loss of Dopeboy Ra, formerly known as Young Capone, who passed away at 35. Publicist Aleesha Carter confirmed his passing on Tuesday; however, the cause of death remains undisclosed.

Carter shared her grief on Instagram, stating, "This is with a heavy, heavy heart that I’m even posting this. We made magic when we strategically put out projects, always." She expressed disbelief at the news of his unexpected passing. Carter also described Dopeboy Ra as not only a client but a dear friend, highlighting his significance in East Atlanta. She concluded, "Rest easy, RIP @dopeboyra #dopeboyra #youngcapone."

Dopeboy Ra had been missing since July before confirmation of his passing, leaving his admirers stunned. Runway Richy, a collaborator and close friend, paid tribute on Instagram, writing, "Rest in peace, my n***a @gxdsxlldxpe @dopeboyra. A true legend, a brother."

Emerging as Young Capone in the mid-2000s, Dopeboy Ra's journey was marked by tracks like the 2006 hit "Lights, Camera, Action," and "It's Hot." His artistic contributions continued through mixtapes such as "Look Who's Back" (2010) and "Paper And Politics" (2011).

Dopeboy Ra eventually found his artistic home with Grand Hustle, the label associated with the eminent rapper and entrepreneur, T.I.'s group Hustle Gang. This affiliation is pivotal as T.I. wields substantial influence in the industry and Atlanta's music landscape.

The label conveyed its sorrow through Tip on Instagram, who wrote, "Deeply saddened by the loss of an Atlanta/Trap Muzik Legend," under a message from the label:

"The Grand Hustle family is deeply saddened by the tragic passing of RaRa (formerly known as Young Capone)," the label announced. They expressed heartfelt condolences to his family, children, friends, and the wider Atlanta community, while highlighting his indelible presence and effortless talent.

Wednesday, March 15, 2023

Legendary R&B Singer Bobby Caldwell Passes Away at 71

Legendary R&B singer Bobby Caldwell, known for his chart-topping hits "What You Won't Do For Love" and "Open Your Eyes," has died at the age of 71.

Caldwell's wife Mary confirmed his death on Wednesday via his official Twitter account.

"Bobby passed away here at home. I held him tight in my arms as he left us. I am forever heartbroken. Thanks to all of you for your many prayers over the years," she wrote.

Caldwell had been suffering from health issues for the past six years after experiencing an adverse reaction to a fluoroquinolone antibiotic, a condition known as "floxed," according to treatment center Regenerative Medicine LA.

Born on August 15, 1951, in New York City, Caldwell was known for his unique ability to blend jazz, R&B and pop into his music.

His soulful hits, including "What You Won't Do for Love," "My Flame" and "Coming Down From Love," earned him worldwide recognition and numerous accolades, including a 1978 Grammy nomination for Best R&B Vocal Performance.

Caldwell's music has been sampled by a wide range of artists, including 2Pac, Aaliyah, Kendrick Lamar, the Notorious B.I.G. and Lil Nas X.

Perhaps his most famous track, "What You Won't Do For Love," appeared on his double-platinum self-titled debut album.

Thursday, February 2, 2023

Charlie Thomas, Member of Legendary Soul Group the Drifters, Dies at 85

SoloEntCC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Charlie Thomas, a prominent member of the golden-era lineup of the R&B group the Drifters in the 1960s, died on Tuesday (Jan. 31). He was 85.

The Rock & Roll Hall of Famer, who sang on two of the group's top 40 hits — 1961's "Sweets for My Sweet" and "When My Little Girl Is Smiling" (1962) — had been battling liver cancer.

Originally formed as a backing group for Clyde Lensley McPhatte, one of the doo-wop and R&B circuit's most popular acts in the ’50s, the Drifters have played an outsized role in music history through the group's various incarnations, lineups and spin-offs.

Thomas was an original member of the second iteration of the band, formed in 1958 when the vocal group he was part of (The Five Crowns) was hired to become the new Drifters by the group's manager George Treadwell following a falling out with the original members over low pay and other issues.  

The group featured legendary singer Ben E. King and was popularly known as Ben E. King and the Drifters. Thomas remained in the group until 1967, only to return to a different lineup later.

Eventually, he formed his own version of the group. Charlie Thomas' Drifters toured incessantly around the world throughout the new millennium until sickness sidelined the singer.

The Lynchburg, Virginia, native was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of fame in 1988, along with six other former members of the Drifters, whose membership spanned three eras of the band.

Tuesday, November 1, 2022

Takeoff, Member of Popular Atlanta Rap Trio Migos, Dead at 28

Takeoff, second from right, was shot and killed Tuesday morning in Houston.

Takeoff, one-third of the popular Atlanta rap group Migos, is dead following an early morning shooting in Houston.

A spokesperson for the Houston Police Department said the artist was shot outside a bowling alley on Tuesday.

Police responded to reports of a shooting at 810 Billiards & Bowling at around 2:30 a.m. When officers arrived on the scene, they discovered one man dead (from a gunshot wound to the head or neck) and two other people injured.

Later authorities positively identified the victim as Takeoff. Born Kirshnik Khari Ball, the 28-year-old was the youngest member of the chart-topping group he formed with his uncle Quavo and cousin Offset.

When the incident transpired, forty to fifty people were at the after-party, including Qauvo. No arrests have been announced yet.

Formed in Atlanta in 2008, Migos has been one of hip-hop's most successful acts. The group has sold over three million albums and received two Grammy Award nominations.

Takeoff also found success outside the group. His solo album, “The Last Rocket,” debuted at No. 4 on the Billboard 200 chart in 2018. Recently, along with Quavo, he released “Only Built for Infinity Links,” which peaked at No. 7.

Friday, October 7, 2022

Motown Legend, Ivy Jo Hunter, Dies at 82

Ivy Jo Hunter

Ivy Jo Hunter, a singer and musician best known for his work at Motown — where he was one of the hitmaking record label's most prolific songwriters — passed away on Thursday (Oct. 6). He was 82.

SoulTrack's Chris Rizik first broke the news, and the Motown Museum confirmed it on Twitter with a poignant post remembering the legacy of the man behind many of its classic releases.

"Ivy Jo was not only a remarkable writer and producer, but also a loving husband, father and grandfather," the company, which credited Hunter as being behind some of its most significant hits tweeted, "We send our condolences to his family, friends and dedicated fans around the world."

No cause of death has been given at this time.

Born George Ivy Hunter, the Detroit native was trained in orchestral music. Following a brief stint in the army, he spent time singing in soul clubs around the city and was eventually discovered by legendary Motown A&R man Mickey Stevenson in the early 1960s.  

Stevenson signed the adept pianist and trumpeter to the label. There he spent time playing keyboards on Motown albums as a session musician before he eventually was made a principal in the studio's house band, playing on some of the label's biggest hits.

At the same time, Stevenson began working with him as a songwriter. Together the duo is credited with writing many of the studio's classics. Hunter’s songs were recorded by Motown's biggest acts including "Truly Yours" by the Spinners, the Temptation's "Sorry Is a Sorry Word" and the Isley Brothers' "Behind a Painted Smile."

He also wrote and produced hits for Martha & the Vandellas, the Four Tops, the Temptations, Marvin Gaye and Aretha Franklin, among many others.

Eventually, Hunter parted ways with the label when it moved to California. Though he continued to work as a vocalist during his time at the label and recorded many demos and other compositions only two of his singles were ever released by the company, both under its VIP subsidiary. "I Remember When (Dedicated to Beverly)" in 1970 and the following year "I'd Still Love You."

A planned album with the working title "Ivy Jo is in this Bag" was shelved when he left Motown.

Hunter continued to enjoy success in the music world following his departure. He played keyboards on Funkadelic's "Mommy, What's a Funkadelic?" in 1970 and later co-produced a hit album for former Dramatics' lead singer William "Wee Gee Howard."

He also remained active in his hometown's music scene. In 2009 Hunter participated in Motown's 50th-anniversary celebration.

British songwriter and producer, Ian Levine, one of his longtime collaborators mourned his death on social media.

"It broke my heart to learn of the death of my friend, my co-writer and my co-producer, the incredible genius Ivy Jo Hunter," Levine wrote in a tweet, noting that he had written over fifty songs with Hunter.

Monday, January 17, 2022

Prince’s Estate Valued at $156.4 Million

In the 1980s, the rivalry between Michael Jackson and Prince was legendary as they both vied for the pop music throne.

At one point, things got so heated between The Purple One and the King of Pop that Prince tried to run over Jackson and some family members in his limo, according to music icon Quincy Jones.

“He waited in the limousine to try and run over him and [Jackson’s sister] La Toya and his mother,” the renowned producer told GQ in 2018, noting that things spiraled out of control between the two when Prince threatened to kill Jackson following an embarrassing exit by His Royal Badness from a James Brown concert (see video below).

So, it is fair to say that Prince — who bullied, mocked and belittled Jackson throughout their feud — might have taken some perverse pleasure from this past Friday’s news.

The Minneapolis Star Tribune reported that after nearly six years of legal battles, parties to Prince's estate have finally agreed on its value: $156.4 million. The new total dwarfs the initial appraisal of $82.3 million by the estate’s administrator, Comerica Bank & Trust.

More importantly for Prince purists, fans of one-upmanship and those who got a kick out of the back-and-forth nature of the sometimes-friendly struggle for superiority from the duo, it exceeds the adjusted value of Jackson’s estate.

After his death in 2009, the IRS appraised Jackson’s wealth at $1.1 billion before adjusting that figure to $482 million. That lofty number wouldn’t last long, however, as a U.S. Tax Court judge finally settled the matter, valuing Jackson's estate at $111 million last spring.

The settlement means that the process of distributing the musician's, who died of a fentanyl overdose in 2016, wealth could begin in February. The estate will be almost evenly divided between Primary Wave, a well-funded New York music company, and the three oldest of Prince's six heirs or their families.

In all seriousness, it is a hollow victory. Author and friend Tavis Smiley told Extra Jackson’s death hit Prince hard:

I've never said it publicly… when the news came that Michael had died, Prince was in rehearsal at Paisley Park… Prince cancels rehearsals, sent the band home, and for days locked himself in his bedroom and wouldn't come out and really didn't talk to people.

Wednesday, January 12, 2022

Ronnie Spector, ’60s Icon Behind ‘Be My Baby,’ dead at 78

The original bad girl of rock'n'roll, Ronnie Spector, died Wednesday following a brief battle with cancer.

Spector, whose signature reach-for-the-ceiling beehive hairdo and sultry vocals propelled her to pop icon status in the 1960s as the lead singer of the chart-topping girl group The Ronettes, was 78.

"Our beloved earth angel, Ronnie, peacefully left this world today," read a statement posted by her family on the singer's website confirming her passing. "She was with family and in the arms of her husband, Jonathan. Ronnie lived her life with a twinkle in her eye, a spunky attitude, a wicked sense of humor and a smile on her face. She was filled with love and gratitude. Her joyful sound, playful nature and magical presence will live on in all who knew, heard or saw her."

Born Veronica Yvette Bennett in Spanish Harlem. Spector, who was of Black and Cherokee descent on her mother’s side and Irish on her father’s, formed The Darling Sisters while she was a teenager with her older sister Estelle and their cousin Nedra Talley.

The group was signed to Colpix Records in 1961. It was not until two years later, however, when it moved to Phil Spector's Philles Records that its music started to take off, and the girls began to blaze their own path in a market crowded with ready-built acts targeted for teen consumption.

Under Spector, known as “the first tycoon of teen" for his adeptness at the market, the group changed its name to The Ronettes and had a string of 60s hits, such as “Be My Baby,” “Baby I Love You” and “Walking in the Rain.”

The Ronettes 

In 1968 the creative marriage between Phil Spector, who produced and wrote many of The Ronettes hits,
became a real one. In 1974 Spector’s abuse and refusal to allow his wife to perform led to a divorce, as detailed by Ronnie in her memoir “Be My Baby: The Autobiography of Ronnie Spector."

Photo Credit: Chris Hall
“I knew that if I didn’t leave I was going to die there,” Ronnie, whose touring for a time was confined to psychiatric wards, told Vanity Fair, adding that when the judge ordered support of $1,300 per month, Phil had a Brink’s truck deliver the first payment to her lawyer’s office—in nickels. The court put a stop to that, so Phil switched to checks stamped with “f—k off” on the back.

Following the divorce, Ronnie struggled to reestablish her career releasing four solo albums from 1980 to 2016 to middling success. She made a brief return to the limelight in 1986 thanks to a memorable solo in Eddie Money's 1986 hit "Take Me Home Tonight."

The Ronettes, who headlined for rock heavyweights The Rolling Stones, Eric Clapton and The Beatles during their career, were inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 2007.

Monday, January 10, 2022

James Mtume, Jazz and R&B Legend, Dies at 76

Courtesy Photo

James Mtume, a legendary jazz musician and R&B artist whose hit 1983 single “Juicy Fruit” provided the
musical foundation for the Notorious B.I.G.'s 1994 rap classic “Juicy,” died Sunday at the age of 76.

No cause of death was given. Lisa Lucas, the daughter of Mtume’s deceased creative partner guitarist Reggie Lucas, was the first to share the news, which was confirmed by his publicist, Angelo Ellerbee.

"So much loss. So much grief. Rest in power to Uncle Mtume," she wrote on Twitter. "My late father’s partner in crime, the co-creator of the songs of my life (and about my birth!). He was essential part of the life of the man who made me, therefore me too. Gone now. He will be dearly, eternally missed."

The Philadelphia native, born James Heath, was a musical legacy. The son of jazz saxophonist Jimmy Heath, he was raised by his stepfather, James Forman, a jazz pianist. In college he adopted the Swahili word for messenger as his stage name.

The percussionist's career had exploded by the 1970s, thanks in part to his collaborations with jazz legends Miles Davis and McCoy Tyner. From 1971-1975 he manned the drums on electronic jazz classics like “On the Corner” and “Pangea.”

A renaissance man Mtume, along with his musical partner Lucas, produced songs and albums for Stephanie Mills, Phyllis Hyman, Lou Rawls and The Spinners in the early 80s.

Their collaboration led to a string of hits including Mills’ Grammy-winning “Never Knew Love Like This Before” in 1981 and Roberta Flack and Donny Hathaway’s 1978 million-selling hit “The Closer I Get to You.”

In 1978 he started leading his eponymous New York-based group Mtume. The group struck gold on its third album release with 1983’s “Juicy Fruit.” The funk-fueled, bass-heavy track earned the No. 1 stop on the Billboard R&B chart and began a legacy that would transcend the artist.

When Notorious B.I.G. sampled the song in his 1994 hit "Juicy,” it served as a powerful platform to propel the artist into eventual rap superstardom over one of the most famous bass and drum samples in history.

According to reporting from NPR, Mtume was flattered by his work being used as the basis for the track.

"Oh, I dug it," remembered Mtume about "Juicy." "They actually wanted me to be in [the music video]. I was asked and I said, 'No, you ain't doing that man. What? You want me to jump around the corner in some high shoes and plaid pants?' They fell out laughing. 'It's your generation, you all do what you do.' "

His work would go on to be sampled by a multitude of other hip-hop artists. Snoop Dogg, Lil Kim and Common are just a few of the luminaries who have sampled Mtume.

In addition to his significant contributions to jazz, besides Davis and Tyner, he contributed to recordings from many of the arts greatest legends including Duke Ellington and Dizzy Gillespie; Mtume co-produced Mary J. Blige’s 1997 hit album” Share My World.” He also served as a music supervisor for television’s “New York Undercover” and scored the 1986 film “Native Son.” An activist at heart, he also co-hosted a community talk series called “Open Line” on New York’s WBLS-FM for 18 years.

Wednesday, January 5, 2022

Force MDs Jessie D Dead at 57

Photo Credit @jessieleedaniels Instagram
Jessie Lee Daniels, a founding member of the Force MDs, has passed away at the age of 57.

The death of Daniels, aka Jessie D, was announced late Tuesday on the pioneering hip-hop and R&B group’s official Facebook page.

“He ate, sleep [sic] and breathe music everyday,” the post read.

“Please put a heart up for him. He was loved!!!!!!!!!! To the family, friends and fans today we lost a real talent. Our condolences goes out to his siblings, kids and the Force MDs."

Formed in Staten Island, New York, the family group rose to fame in the early 1980s propelled by their unique combination of doo-wop and acapella sung over hip-hop beats that became the foundation of the New Jack Swing movement.

Originally named the Fantastic L.D.s, before switching to Force MCs and eventually settling on Force MDs, which stood for musical diversity, the group was comprised of brothers Stevie D., Antoine “T.C.D.” Lundy, and Rodney “Khalil” Lundy, along with their uncle Daniels. In later years their friends Trisco Pearson and Charles “Mercury” Nelson from the Mariners Harbor projects on Staten Island joined the group.

The Force MDs were best known for their hits “Love is a House,” “Itchin’ For a Scratch” and “Tender Love.” Daniels sang lead vocals for the Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis-penned “Tender Love” which reached No. 10 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart and was featured on the soundtrack of the groundbreaking hip-hop movie “Krush Groove” in 1985.

The group which released six studio albums together, the last being “The Reunion” in 2000, has had its music live on in part because of heavy sampling by other artists.

"Tender Love" was sampled in the 1996 Bone Thugs-n-Harmony hit "Days of Our Livez", and Alicia Keys, The Backstreet Boys, Kelly Rowland, Marques Houston and Marsha Ambrosius are among those who have made covers of the song.

The group also lent its vocals to several tracks on Ghostface Killah’s iconic solo debut ‘Ironman" in 1996.

Daniels is the fifth member of the group, which former President Barack Obama revealed was on his Air Force One iPod playlist in a 2009 interview, to pass.

Charles “Mercury” Nelson died from a heart attack in 1995. Antoine “T.C.D.” Lundy died of Lou Gehrig’s disease in 1998, and Trisco Pearson died of cancer in 2016. DJ Dr. Rock, one of the group's former DJs, passed away in 1996 from natural causes.

Monday, December 27, 2021

Motown Legend Wanda Young Dead at 78

Courtesy Motown Museum 

Over the weekend, Wanda Young, one of the lead singers of Motown girl group The Marvelettes, which found chart-topping success with their infectious brand of doo-wop in the 1960s, was confirmed to have died at the age of 78 earlier this year.

Young’s daughter, Meta Ventress, confirmed to The New York Times in a story published Saturday that her mother died on Dec. 15, in suburban Detroit from complications of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

Young, who also recorded as Wanda Rogers after marrying fellow Motown alum, The Miracles Bobby Rogers in 1963, was an early replacement member for the group originally named The Casinyets, replacing founding member Georgia Dobbins shortly before the group signed its first deal with Motown.

After taking a backseat to group founder Gladys Horton, singing lead on B-sides and co-leads on some of the group’s songs but not their singles; Young scored her first A-side lead and a desperately needed hit for the then waning group with "I'll Keep Holding On" in 1965. The Young-led single peaked at No. 11 on the Billboard R&B charts and started a new area of success for the group.

Young remained the lead singer until the group disbanded in 1970, singing on such classics as the million-seller “Don’t Mess With Bill,” "The Hunter Gets Captured by the Game", "When You're Young and in Love," and "My Baby Must Be a Magician.”

Ventress told the Times her mother, who released a solo album produced by Smokey Robinson in 1970 that was billed as “The Return of The Marvelettes,” despite other group members not participating, didn’t wake up every day thinking of The Marvelettes. But she never lost that glamour.

“I told her constantly, ‘All these people love you,’” Ventress said. “And she’d say, ‘Wow.’”

The album flopped and Young left the label and lived off royalties, for the most part, making brief returns to performing in the 80s and 90s.

Founded by 15-year-old Horton in the fall of 1960 with fellow members of her high school glee club at Inkster Michigan’s eponymously named high school, The Marvelettes had a string of hits with Motown after being signed by Motown chief Berry Gordy.

Their signature song and first major release for the label, the 1961 number-one single, "Please Mr. Postman,” was one of the first number-one singles recorded by an all-female vocal group. The Marvelettes have been nominated for the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame twice. On August 17, 2013, The Marvelettes were inducted into the first class of the Official Rhythm & Blues Music Hall of Fame.

Katherine Anderson, Georgeanna Tillman, Juanita Cowart, and Dobbins round out the original lineup for the group.

Along with Ventress, Young is survived by her other children, Robert Rogers III and Bobbae Rogers; seven grandchildren; a great-grandson; four sisters and four brothers.

Wednesday, November 17, 2021

Rapper Young Dolph Shot to Death at Bakery

Authorities have confirmed that rapper Young Dolph was shot and killed today in his hometown of Memphis, Tennessee while patronizing a local business.

Law enforcement sources confirmed to local news outlets, Fox13 and WREG, that Dolph walked into Makeda’s Butter Cookies in South Memphis to make a purchase at around 1 p.m. Owner Maurice Hill said someone then drove up and shot and killed the 36-year-old.
Born Adolph Robert Thornton, Jr., Dolph, was a staple of the Memphis music scene. In 2016 his debut album "King of Memphis" made him a breakout star and his last solo album "Rich Slave" reached No. 4 on the Billboard 200 in 2020.

Aside from his musical success, Fox13 reported that he was well known for handing out turkeys around Thanksgiving in Memphis through the Memphis Athletic Ministries charity and donating money to his alma mater, Hamilton High School.
This was not the rapper's first brush with death. In September of 2017, he spent two weeks in the hospital after three men confronted him outside of a Memphis hotel. During the incident, a fight broke out, and Dolph was critically wounded after being shot three times. It was the second time the artist was shot that year. In February of 2017, he survived a barrage of over 100 bullets that targeted his SUV outside Charlotte, North Carolina.

Friday, April 9, 2021

Hip-Hop Legend DMX Dies At 50

Earl Simmons, also known as DMX, has died one week after suffering a heart attack.

He was 50 years old.

His family announced “We are deeply saddened to announce today that our loved one, DMX, birth name of Earl Simmons, passed away at 50 years old at White Plains Hospital with his family by his side after being placed on life support for the past few days.”

“Earl was a warrior who fought till the very end. He loved his family with all of his heart and we cherish the times we spent with him. Earl’s music inspired countless fans across the world and his iconic legacy will live on forever. We appreciate all of the love and support during this incredibly difficult time. Please respect our privacy as we grieve the loss of our brother, father, uncle and the man the world knew as DMX. We will share information about his memorial service once details are finalized.”

On April 2nd, DMX was rushed to the hospital and by Saturday morning, the rapper’s lawyer, Murray Richman, confirmed that he was in a coma and on life support in the hospital’s critical care unit after suffering from an overdose.

DMX's brain was reportedly deprived of oxygen for 30 minutes and remained in a vegetative state. After a week and a battery of brain function tests, the rapper was taken off life support Friday.

Rest in Peace DMX.