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Eddie Kendricks

Known for both his years with the Temptations and his major solo hits of the 1970s, Eddie Kendricks was among the many soul legends who did his part to put Motown on the map. The expressive vocalist (who often sang in a falsetto), born Edward James Kendrick, grew up in Birmingham, Alabama, but it was Detroit's Motown label that made him a star. Kendricks was still living in Alabama in the late '50s when he formed the Primes with Kell Osborne and Temptation-to-be Paul Williams. After moving from Alabama to Detroit, the Primes caught the attention of a Motor City group known as the Distants, whose members included Temptations-to-be Otis Williams, Elbridge Bryant, and Melvin Franklin. The Primes broke up after being together only a few years, and the Temptations (originally known as the Elgins) were formed when, in 1961, members of the Primes and the Distants came together.

With a lineup that included former Primes members Kendricks and Paul Williams, and former Distants members Otis Williams (who was unrelated to Paul), Melvin Franklin, and Elbridge Bryant, the Temptations signed with the little-known Motown subsidiary Miracle. The Temptations, who went through many personnel changes over the years, didn't become successful right away, but by the mid-'60s, they had become huge thanks to such smashes as the Kendricks-led "The Way You Do the Things You Do" and "My Girl." The group enjoyed one mega-hit after another in the mid- to late '60s, including "The Girl's Alright with Me" and "Get Ready." Kendricks also did a little songwriting and created many of the group's vocal arrangements.

By the time the Temptations scored their 11th number one R&B hit with "Just My Imagination," Kendricks had left to pursue a solo a career. Many fans questioned the wisdom of his leaving such a successful group, but he proved to be quite viable as a solo act thanks to early-'70s singles like "Keep on Truckin,'" a number one R&B hit, and "Boogie Down," which went to number two on the R&B chart. Other noteworthy solo hits followed, including "Shoeshine Boy," "Get the Cream Off the Top," "Happy" in 1975," and "He's a Friend" in 1976. Most of his solo albums came out on Motown, although Kendricks recorded for Arista and Atlantic during the late '70s and early '80s. By that time, however, his popularity had decreased considerably. The singer wasn't heard from much in the '80s, though in 1985, he did participate in the Artists United Against Apartheid's Sun City project and recorded Live at the Apollo with Daryl Hall, John Oates, and Temptation partner David Ruffin. Two years later, he and Ruffin released an album for RCA.

Sadly, the '90s would see the premature deaths of no less than three former members of the Temptations. First, Ruffin died of a cocaine overdose in 1991, followed by the deaths of Kendricks in 1992, and Melvin Franklin (from a brain seizure) in 1995. (Tragedy was nothing new to Temptations members: Paul Williams had committed suicide back in 1973). Kendricks was only 52 when he died of lung cancer in his native Birmingham on October 5, 1992. ~ Alex Henderson
full bio

Selected Discography

x

Track List: The Ultimate Collection

1. Keep On Truckin'

2. If You Let Me

3. Get The Cream Off The Top

4. Tell Her Love Has Felt The Need

5. Boogie Down

6. Goin' Up In Smoke

7. Shoeshine Boy

8. This Used To Be The Home Of Johnnie Mae

9. Date With The Rain

10. Darling Come Back Home

11. Girl You Need A Change Of Mind

12. He's A Friend

13. Intimate Friends

14. Skippin' Work Today

15. Get It While It's Hot

16. Can I

Comments

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So smooth.. I glide I love too!
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wendybrooke1 1 8
Voice of an angel! Just My Imagination - one of my favorite songs of all time
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I love him so much
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spigg143
Tessa's��
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This man and group taught me that saying I love you is best thing a man could say to a woman that will make her butter
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My twin flame song.....
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"I KNOW I BLEW YOUR MIND".....
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"Let your mind relax....
Lay your head on heart......"
DON'T LET IT SLIP AWAY
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I miss all the great ones they will always be rembered. Rest in peace
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Whispers getting louder...cal l i n g your name...

"RE-RE"..... . .

SAILING THIS SHIP ON DRY LAND!!!
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ubm3
It is heart warming to read all of the comments. What sticks out also, is the amount of respect that is demonstrated by his admirers. If you were born in that genre you had to have manners and show respect or else.
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a601divaiam
Eddie and David....the voices of the tempting Temptations!
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.....The day I found you....
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at the age of 12 years old when I came across my older cousins album the Temptations I immediately fell in love with Eddies vocals peace to the pleasures that the Temptations brought through the years especially Eddie.......
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Thank you! and to all the song you sang with the temptation and going on with your life as a solo artist R.I.P. Eddie Kendricks.
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Eddie Kendricks is one in a million; he is the best of the Temptations. I loved him so much, I married a guy that looked just like him!!! :) RIP Eddie!!!
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d.holliday58
with the temps he was cold on his own he was cold. R I P Eddie. Hollywood
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Shoeshine boy
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ONLY ROOM FOR TWO was very un-noticed but should be remade by someone with that strong falsetto voice!!!!!
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Boogie down..baby..
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Keep on truckin..,��
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This man sang what I felt in my Heart!!!
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the song. Can I sends me away. It touches my soul
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Eddie is one of the best falsetto singers of all time!
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the song johnnymay
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Mr kendrics held his own , iconic musician
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I just truly believe this!!! nothing but God our Friend
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Each Day I Cry A Little...Edd i e at his best!
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NICE **** MR.E KENDRICKS
(( Temptations) )
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soul brother
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One of the Greatest singer's ever RIP Eddie
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Can I.....make a dream come true?
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I met Eddie and one other member of the Temptations when they performed at the Columbia township auditorium in Columbia, South Carolina.How e v e r , I can only remember tall handsome Eddie Kendrick and the feel of his hands and voice. I love and miss him so much.Always and forever in love with Eddie's sweet voice and tall statue. Margaret E
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I met Eddie and one other member of the Temptations when they performed at the Columbia township auditorium in Columbia, South Carolina.How e v e r , I can only remember tall handsome Eddie Kendrick and the fell of his hands and voice. I love and miss him so much.Always and forever in love with Eddie's sweet voice and tall statue. Margaret E
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There will never be a voice like Mr. Eddie Kendricks, RIP Lover forever.
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MOTOWN Man what an awesome falsetto. ..so recognizable
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Love love them
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Temptations is the group..... Eddie Kendricks is the "man"!!..... the prophet man from the bombing happy land!!!


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taylorpaula2 0 1 3
God Bless his Soul,what a voice love you Eddie!
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Oh magnificent Eddie, how I wish I was around in your days!!
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pdaddylight
Best of the days
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Eddie's version of Day by Day showed the power of his voice.
nobody can touch it.
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Eddie was the true sound of the Temptations with that sweet voice. This album HE'S A FRIEND is my favorite.
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kleatherbury 1
One of my favorite Kendricks song was the song he dedicated for his mom Johnny-Mae, very moving and gripping.
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Best Of Strangers Now by Eddie is my all time Fave a new discovery grabs me in the core check it out........
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smooth soul
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Date with the rain 1972 Eddies best
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kleatherbury 1
One of my favorites song by Eddie was Two Sides of Love,which he sang lead with the temptations its an all time ballad for young lovers who separate. This song helped me through my young disappointin g romantic times.
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I love you Eddie! no one has ever brought so much emotion and feeling to the music. Jeannette from Chicago
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bre1952
Still one of my favorite artists, RIP
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