. "Teddy Bear
"; a tenor growl
that the ladies love (or so I'm told
). He was the drummer
in the backing band for Harold Melvin and the Blue Notes, but he gained a singing
role, one that increased until, at last, he became the lead singer
. This was, arguably, his prime (the ladies
would disagree): "Bad Luck
" and "If You Don't Know Me By Now
" (from the mid 70s
) are two classix of Philly Soul
. He went solo
His early solo career was characterized by the
consolidation of the Teddy Bear Mystique, with makeoutmusik like "Close the Door" and "Turn Off the Lights"; he had his moments, but it was, in general, Love Man self-parody (there was even a "For Women Only" tour - "wives, leave your husbands at home!" sort of stuff) compared to the
preachifyin' highs of the best Blue Notes material (Ain't love a... can I get a witness?).
He was paralyzed in a 1982 auto accident; after rehab, he resumed his career, but in somewhat muted form. It would take years for him to regain the vocal power that had established him.