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The Manhattans

The Manhattans were one of those classic R&B vocal groups who manage to achieve incredible career longevity by adapting their style to fit changing times. Formed in the '60s as a doo wop-influenced R&B quintet, the Manhattans reinvented themselves as sweet smooth soul balladeers during the '70s. In doing so, they somehow overcame the death of lead singer George Smith, and with new frontman Gerald Alston became more popular than they'd ever been, landing an across-the-board number one hit in 1976 with "Kiss and Say Goodbye." Under the leadership of Winfred "Blue" Lovett (who also composed some of the group's biggest hits), the Manhattans survived as a viable chart act well into the '80s, over two decades after their formation.

The Manhattans got together not in their namesake location, but in nearby Jersey City, NJ, in 1962. The group was centered around lead singer George "Smitty" Smith and bass (and sometime lead) vocalist Winfred "Blue" Lovett; the other original members were Kenny Kelley, Richard Taylor, and Edward "Sonny" Bivins, the latter of whom sometimes co-wrote material with accomplished songwriter Lovett. In 1964, the Manhattans signed with the Newark-based Carnival label and teamed up with producer Joe Evans; they scored their first hit in early 1965 with "I Wanna Be (Your Everything)," a number 12 R&B hit that established their way with a ballad right from the beginning. It was the first of eight singles for Carnival, a string that continued up through 1967. None were huge hits, but nearly all of them reached the Top 30 on the R&B charts, and are still prized by collectors of vocal-group soul for their aching harmonies, Smith's intense leads, and lack of concession to mainstream pop audiences.

In 1969, the Manhattans signed on with DeLuxe and issued several singles over the course of 1970. Unfortunately, Smith fell ill that year, and the group hired Phil Terrell as a temporary fill-in. Sadly, Smith passed away in 1971; he was replaced on lead vocals by Gerald Alston, who brought a smoother, more pop-friendly sound to the group. That quality soon became apparent when the Lovett-penned "One Life to Live" zoomed into the R&B Top Five in late 1972, giving the Manhattans their first major hit. The following year, they left DeLuxe for Columbia, where their debut single, "There's No Me Without You" (written by Sonny Bivins), equaled the R&B chart peak of "One Life to Live" by reaching number three. Initially working with producer Bobby Martin, the Manhattans' records now fell into line with the sweet, string-laden sound of contemporary '70s soul. The Manhattans hit the R&B Top Ten again in 1974 with "Don't Take Your Love" and 1975 with "Hurt," but their biggest success was still to come.

In early 1975, the Manhattans had recorded a Blue Lovett composition called "Kiss and Say Goodbye," which was released as a single almost a full year later. It became the second platinum single in history (after Johnnie Taylor's "Disco Lady") and their first number one hit in the spring of 1976, not just on the R&B charts, but the pop side as well -- a remarkable feat, considering that they'd never had a single peak higher than number 37 on that survey. While it proved difficult to match the crossover success of "Kiss and Say Goodbye," the Manhattans reeled off a string of Top Ten R&B hits -- "I Kinda Miss You," "It Feels So Good to Be Loved So Bad," "We Never Danced to a Love Song," and "Am I Losing You" -- that lasted into early 1978 and made them staples on the newly emerging quiet storm radio format. Their momentum slowed over the next couple of years, but they came back strong in 1980 with "Shining Star" -- not a cover of the Earth, Wind & Fire hit, but a co-write by their new producer Leo Graham. "Shining Star" reached the Top Five on both the pop and R&B charts, went gold, and won a Grammy -- overall, not a bad haul.

The Manhattans' last major hit came with 1983's "Crazy," which put them in the R&B Top Five for the final time; they bade farewell to the Top 40 in 1985 with a cover of Sam Cooke's "You Send Me." That year Richard Taylor left the group, which carried on as a quartet for a few years; Taylor passed away in December 1987. Gerald Alston signed with Motown as a solo artist in 1988, upon which point the group finally parted ways with Columbia and recorded an album for the small Valley Vue label before disbanding. Alston and Lovett reunited in 1993; with new members Troy May and David Tyson, they toured regularly into the new millennium, with the occasional recording appearing on a small label. ~ Steve Huey
full bio

Selected Discography

x

Track List: With These Hands (Expanded Version)

1. Can't Take My Eyes Off You

2. Loneliness

3. By The Time I Get To Phoenix

4. Straight From My Heart

5. It's Gonna Take A Lot To Bring Me Back

6. If My Heart Could Speak

7. With These Hands

8. Georgia On My Mind

9. Give Him Up

10. People Get Ready

11. From Atlanta To Goodbye

12. Rainbow Week (Single Version)

13. Let Them Talk (Single Version)

14. Fantastic Journey (Single Version)

15. Windmills Of Your Mind (Single Version)

16. The Picture Became Quite Clear (Mono)

17. Oh, Lord I Wish I Could Sleep (Mono)

x

Track List: There's No Good In Goodbye (Expanded Version)

1. There's No Good in Goodbye

2. Then You Can Tell Me Goodbye

3. Tomorrow

4. Share My Life

5. Am I Losing You

6. Happiness

7. You're My Life

8. Goodbye Is the Saddest Word

9. Movin'

10. Everybody Has a Dream

11. Don't Say Goodbye (Single Version)

12. Here Comes the Hurt Again (Single Version)

13. Everybody Has a Dream (Single Version)

14. Am I Losing You (Alternate Version w/o Rap)

15. Don't Say Goodbye (X-Rated Version)

16. Here Comes the Hurt Again (X-Rated Version)

17. That's Not Part of the Show (X-Rated Version)

x

Track List: Too Hot to Stop It (Expanded Version)

1. Don't Say No

2. You Send Me

3. Angel of the Night

4. When We Are Made as One

5. C'est La Vie

6. Dreamin'

7. You're Gonna Love Being Loved By Me

8. Too Hot to Stop It

9. You Send Me (Single Version)

10. Don't Say No (Single Version)

x

Track List: There's No Me Without You (Expanded Edition)

1. There's No Me Without You

2. We Made It

3. Wish That You Were Mine

4. I'm Not a Run Around

5. Soul Train

6. You'd Better Believe It

7. It's so Hard Loving You

8. The Day the Robin Sang to Me

9. Falling Apart at the Seams

10. The Other Side of Me

11. You'd Better Believe It (Single Version)

12. Wish That You Were Mine (Single Version)

x

Track List: After Midnight (Expanded Version)

1. Shining Star

2. It's Not the Same

3. Girl of My Dream

4. Cloudy, With a Chance of Tears

5. The Closer You Are

6. If My Heart Could Speak / One Life to Live

7. Just as Long as I Have You

8. It Couldn't Hurt

9. Tired of the Single Life

10. I'll Never Run Away from Love Again

11. Shining Star (Single Version)

12. I'll Never Find Another (Find Another Like You) (Single Version)

13. Girl of My Dream (Single Version)

14. It Happened to Me

15. No Way to Love Somebody

16. Seclusion (Long Version)

17. What's Inside Your Heart

x

Track List: Forever by Your Side (Expanded Version)

1. Crazy

2. Start All Over Again

3. Forever by Your Side

4. Just the Lonely Talking Again

5. Locked Up In Your Love

6. Lover's Paradise

7. Love Is Gonna Find You

8. I'm Ready to Love You Again

9. Crazy (Single Version)

10. Crazy (Instrumental)

11. Just the Lonely Talking Again (Single Version)

12. Love Is Gonna Find You (Single Version)

13. Lovin' You Didn't Come Easy

x

Track List: Black Tie (Expanded Version)

1. Just One Moment Away

2. You Stand Out

3. Let Your Love Come Down

4. Honey, Honey

5. When You See Me Laughing

6. I Wanta Thank You

7. Deep Water

8. Just Can't Seem to Get Next to You

9. I Was Made for You

10. When I Leave Tomorrow

11. Just One Moment Away (Single Version)

12. Let Your Love Come Down (Alternate Version)

13. Let Your Love Come Down (Single Version)

14. Do You Really Mean Goodbye? (Single Version)

15. Rendezvous (Single Version)

16. I Wanta Thank You (Single Version)

x

Track List: A Million To One

1. A Million To One

2. It's The Only Way

3. Back Up

4. You On My Mind

5. Fever

6. Do You Ever

7. Strange Old World

8. One Life To Live

9. Blackbird

10. Cry If You Wanna Cry

11. Teenage Liberation

12. I Can't Stand For You To Leave Me

x

Track List: Love Talk

1. After You

2. Love Talk

3. The Right Feeling At The Wrong Time

4. Devil In The Dark

5. Here Comes The Hurt Again

6. I Just Wanna Be The One In Your Life

7. New York City

8. That's Not Part Of The Show

9. The Way We Were/Memories

10. We Tried

x

Track List: Sweet Talking Soul 1965-1990

Disc 1

1. I Wanna Be (Your Everything)

2. Searchin' For My Baby

3. Follow Your Heart

4. Baby I Need You

5. Can I

6. I Bet'cha (Couldn't Love Me)

7. When We're Made As One

8. I Call It Love

9. It's Gonna Take A Lot To Bring Me Back

10. If My Heart Could Speak

11. From Atlanta To Goodbye

12. A Million To One

13. Cry If You Wanna Cry

14. One Life To Live

15. Back Up

Disc 2

1. There's No Me Without You

2. Do You Ever

3. You'd Better Believe It

4. Wish That You Were Mine

6. Don't Take Your Love

7. Hurt

8. Kiss And Say Goodbye

9. I Kinda Miss You

10. It Feels So Good To Be Loved So Bad

11. We Never Danced To A Love Song

12. Am I Losing You

13. Everybody Has A Dream

Disc 3

1. Shining Star

2. Girl Of My Dream

3. I'll Never Find Another (Find Another Like You)

4. Just One Moment Away

5. Let Your Love Come Down

6. Honey, Honey

7. Crazy

8. Forever By Your Side

9. You Send Me

10. Don't Say No

x

Track List: Super Hits

1. It Feels So Good To Be Loved So Bad

2. Wish That You Were Mine

3. There's No Me Without You

4. Kiss And Say Goodbye

5. Am I Losing You

6. Don't Take Your Love

7. I Kinda Miss You

8. We Never Danced To A Love Song

9. Hurt

10. Shining Star

x

Track List: ...Even Now...

1. Love Me Right

2. Turn Out The Stars

3. Nights Like This

4. Even Now

5. Everyday People

6. Let's Try Love

7. Any Other Way

8. How Much More ?

9. I Got It Right

10. Lover's Lullaby

11. Can You Take It

x

Track List: Love Songs

1. Shining Star

2. Kiss and Say Goodbye

3. It Feels So Good to Be Loved So Bad

4. Wish That You Were Mine

5. Girl of My Dream

6. Cloudy, With a Chance of Tears

7. I'll Never Find Another (Find Another Like You)

8. Just One Moment Away

9. A Million to One

10. We Never Danced to a Love Song

11. Am I Losing You

12. The Way We Were/Memories

13. You're My Life

x

Track List: Kiss And Say Goodbye: The Best Of The Manhattans

1. Kiss And Say Goodbye

2. Don't Take Your Love

3. There's No Me Without You

4. Wish That You Were Mine

5. The Day The Robin Sang To Me

6. That's How Much I Love You

7. Hurt

8. La La La Wish Upon A Star

9. I Kinda Miss You

10. It Feels So Good To Be Loved So Bad

11. Am I Losing You

12. Everybody Has A Dream

13. Shining Star

15. Just One Moment Away

16. I Was Made For You

17. Just The Lonely Talking Again

18. You Send Me

19. Goodbye Is The Saddest Word

x

Track List: One Life To Live

1. One Life To Live

2. Then You CanTell Me Goodbye

3. Don't Say No

4. The Way We Were/Memories

5. Fever

6. A Change Is Gonna Come

7. I'm Through Trying To Prove My Love To You

8. Just The Lonely Talking Again

9. There's No Me Without You

10. Where Did We Go Wrong

x

Track List: Black Tie

1. Just One Moment Away

2. You Stand Out

3. Let Your Love Come Down

4. Honey, Honey

5. When You See Me Laughing

6. I Wanta Thank You

7. Deep Water

8. Just Can't Seem To Get Next To You

9. I Was Made For You

10. When I Leave Tomorrow

x

Track List: After Midnight

1. Shining Star

2. It's Not The Same

3. Girl Of My Dream

4. Cloudy, With A Chance Of Tears

5. The Closer You Are

6. If My Heart Could Speak / One Life To Live

7. Just As Long As I Have You

8. It Couldn't Hurt

9. Tired Of The Single Life

10. I'll Never Run Away From Love Again

x

Track List: Greatest Hits

1. I'll Never Find Another (Find Another Like You)

2. Shining Star

3. Kiss And Say Goodbye

4. Hurt

5. There's No Me Without You

6. Do You Really Mean Goodbye?

7. We Never Danced To A Love Song

8. It Feels So Good To Be Loved So Bad

9. I Kinda Miss You

10. Don't Take Your Love

x

Track List: It Feels So Good (Expanded Version)

1. I Kinda Miss You

2. Up On The Street (Where I Live)

3. Let's Start It All Over Again

4. It's You

5. I'll See You Tomorrow

6. It Feels So Good To Be Loved So Bad

7. It Just Can't Stay This Way

8. We Never Danced To A Love Song

9. Mind Your Business

10. Too Much For Me To Bear

11. I Kinda Miss You (Single Version)

12. Let's Start It All Over Again (Single Version)

13. Let's Start It All Over Again (12" Version)

14. It Feels So Good To Be Loved So Bad (Single Version)

15. We Never Danced To A Love Song (Single Version)

x

Track List: The Manhattans

1. Searching For Love

2. We'll Have Forever To Love

3. Take It or Leave It

4. Reasons

5. How Can Anything So Good Be So Bad For You?

6. Hurt

7. Wonderful World Of Love

8. If You're Ever Gonna Love Me

9. La La La Wish Upon A Star

10. Kiss and Say Goodbye

11. Take It or Leave It (Instrumental Version)

12. Excerpt From "An Interview Special With The Manhattans"

13. Searching For Love (Alternate Version)

Comments

Report as inappropriate
mrgidney
. . . Don't you go away girl! Yes
Report as inappropriate
LOVE THIS SONG!!!!
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YES REV. AL GREEN SING THE GOSPEL OF LOVE and HAPPINESS
Report as inappropriate
justinjenny4 9 5
❤❤❤❤❤❤❤❤
Report as inappropriate
Let's just kiss and say goodbye. If only it was as easy as that Great sound.great group
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In the 70 cheating was not uncommon yet it was self contained and did not destroy the world
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bkracer26
If you ever get a chance to see these guys live (yes, they're still touring), put on your best suits and evening gowns and do it. I've seen them three times and am looking forward to seeing them again in Oakland in February. Insanely cool old-school soul: tuxedos, dancing in unison, incredible soulful lead vocals and lush harmonies, and they do some powerful gospel stuff that leaves you FEELIN' the power of Jesus! Manhattans forever!
Report as inappropriate
justinjenny4 9 5
❤❤❤❤❤❤❤❤❤❤❤❤
Report as inappropriate
Great song I love
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Manhattans from Jersey. Imagine that.
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JUST WANNA DEDICATE THIS TO THAT B**CH YOU SEE IN THE MIRROR!!! GOOD LORD I HATE LOVING HER THIS MUCH!!!
Report as inappropriate
A great great song from the week I was born
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Another super group and song from the early 70s love this music brings back some good memories
Report as inappropriate
Let's just kiss an say goodbye
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It don't get any better than this
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I like this song it brings back some memories for me the good times when men were men and treated women with respect
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I'll always be your shinning star!! Much love ❤️ to you!
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Man one of the best groups of ALL TIME!
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I really miss you ricky i still love you so much lets start over again we can make things work
Report as inappropriate
Who did not love the Manhattans? Every song they sang was my favorite. Especially Kiss and say good bye!
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aestrada223
reggiedavis6 0 5 4 , you are right. If I recall it was Hank 'Dr Dunkenstein' Brown. Those were some bad dudes. Seems like just yesterday.
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aestrada58 how bout dem Sky Kings Ronald "rags" Richards and rest. Hank.Brown on the bball court. USAFE baby!!!
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Kiss and Say Goodbye..... f o r e v e r the sexiest nicest breakup songs, lol! Saw the Manhattans back in early 2000's....st i l l on point rocked it!
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Just saw this group dec 2&3 2016 at the Fitzgerald what a wonderful show I just can't get enough of them!
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I wonder how many men in this group were"Jody" at some point in time ?
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Love this song.memorie s lol
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Awsome song
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curtisvasseu r
Cool song to drive with the top down to.
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this remind me of mom & dad
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ericatashaem a e o d a
I miss U Mae Oda Thomas...(my mother By the way)...����
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KISS AND SAY GOODBYE
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nancyweissbe i n
One life to live, so don't sweat the small stuff!
Take one day at time! Have a bless day❤️
Report as inappropriate
This song I live this thankful he came back .lol
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For the love of LEO continue to sing he's in heaven smiling down on us! Love you always MARGO!! Rest in Peace BIG LEE I'll always be your shinning Star!!!
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Kiss and Say Goodbye..... . t h e ultimate break up song....We can still be friends, lol.
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nancyweissbe i n
Wish you could be mine, very nice song❤️
Report as inappropriate
Play more because thinking back when these songs were made bring me out of a deep depression Lord we won't never see those days again from Debbie
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Leave a comment…
Report as inappropriate
MAGNIFIQUE ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! !
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See Gerald, we would be lost without your voice. Don't stop!!!! Love you always and will never forget all the fun I had with you and LEO.
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aestrada223
Listening to 'Shining Star' while stationed at Upper Heyford, England. British ladies were beautiful and loved to dance. Think back on those times and am thankful for serving my country there from 1979 til 1982.
Report as inappropriate
GREW UP LISTENING TO THIS MUSIC STILL DO WONDERFUL MEMORIES
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jserrano2276
Love this song.
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This goes out to you ricky love you always
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That was baby making music
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tbonewink8
There's no school as ole school. Now that was music.
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I luvvv my old school music
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jserrano2276
I like it
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Great music
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Summer cookouts in Virginia.. good times:)
Show more

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