Percy Sledge

Legendary American R&B, soul and gospel singer Percy Sledge was born November 25, 1940 in Leighton Alabama. He is best known for the song “When a Man Loves a Woman”, a No. 1 hit on both the Billboard Hot 100 and R&B singles charts in 1966. It was awarded a million-selling, Gold-certified disc from the RIAA.

Sledge worked in a series of agricultural jobs in the fields in Leighton before taking a job as an orderly at Colbert County Hospital in Sheffield, Alabama. Through the mid-1960s, he toured the Southeast with the Esquires Combo on weekends, while working at the hospital during the week. A former patient and mutual friend of Sledge and record producer Quin Ivy introduced the two. An audition followed, and Sledge was signed to a recording contract. He achieved success in the late 1960s and early 1970s with a series of emotional soul songs. In later years, Sledge received the Rhythm and Blues Foundation’s Career Achievement Award. He was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame

Sledge’s soulful voice was perfect for the series of soul ballads produced by Ivy and Marlin Greene, which rock critic Dave Marsh called “emotional classics for romantics of all ages”. “When a Man Loves a Woman” was Sledge’s first song recorded under the contract, and was released in March 1966.According to Sledge, the inspiration for the song came when his girlfriend left him for a modelling career after he was laid off from a construction job in late 1965, and, because bassist Calvin Lewis and organist Andrew Wright helped him with the song, he gave all the songwriting credits to them. It reached No. 1 in the US and went on to become an international hit. The song was also the first gold record released by Atlantic Records. The soul anthem became the cornerstone of Sledge’s career, and was followed by “Warm and Tender Love” (covered by British singer Elkie Brooks in 1981), “It Tears Me Up”, “Take Time to Know Her” (his second biggest US hit, reaching No. 11; the song’s lyric was written by Steve Davis), “Love Me Tender”, and “Cover Me”. In the 1970’s Sledge released “I’ll Be Your Everything” and “Sunshine” and became an international concert favorite throughout the world, especially in the Netherlands, Germany, and on the African continent; he averaged 100 concerts a year in South Africa.

Sledge’s career enjoyed a renaissance in the 1980s whenWhen a Man Loves a Woman” was a hit twice in the UK, reaching No. 4 in 1966 and, on reissue, peaked at No. 2 in 1987 behind the reissued Ben E. King classic “Stand by Me”, after being used in a Levi’s commercial. In the early 1990s, Michael Bolton brought “When a Man Loves a Woman” back into the limelight again on his hit album Time, Love, & Tenderness. On the week of November 17 to November 23, 1991, Bolton’s version also hit No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 singles chart, exactly 25½ years to the week after Percy’s did in 1966.

In 1994, Saul Davis and Barry Goldberg produced Sledge’s album, Blue Night, which featured Bobby Womack, Steve Cropper, and Mick Taylor among others. Blue Night received a Grammy nomination for Best Contemporary Blues Album, Vocal or Instrumental, and in 1996 it won the W.C. Handy Award for best soul or blues album. In 2004, Davis and Goldberg also produced the Shining Through the Rain album, which preceded his induction into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. Songs on the CD were written by Mikael Rickfors, Steve Earle, the Bee Gees, Carla Olson, Denny Freeman, Allan Clarke and Jackie Lomax. Percy also recorded a live album with his band Sunset Drive entitled Percy Sledge and Sunset Drive – Live in Virginia.

In May 2007, Percy was inducted into The Louisiana Music Hall Of Fame in his home city of Baton Rouge, LA and In December 2010, Rhino Handmade issued a four-CD retrospective, The Atlantic Recordings, which covers all of the issued Atlantic masters, as well as many of the tracks unissued in the United States (although some were simply the mono versions of songs originally issued in stereo; Disc 1 comprises Sledge’s first two LPs. In 2011 Sledge toured with Sir Cliff Richard during his Soulicious tour, performing “I’m Your Puppet”. Sledge married twice and was survived by his second wife, Rosa Sledge, who he married in 1980. He had 12 children, two of whom became singers. Sledge died of liver cancer at his home in Baton Rouge on April 14, 2015, at the age of 74. His interment was in Baton Rouge’s Heavenly Gates Cemetery.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Elaine's Blog

Following and living in the light

Society Reviews

Film Reviews, News, And Editorials From A Conservatarian Perspective

The Geekly Blog

Reviews and Articles from a Fellow Geek!

www.mylongpubcrawl.com

LEJOG - Lands End to John O'Groats via a few pubs

The Exported Film

Movie and TV Show Reviews and Articles by Michael Colan

Jason's Movie Blog

A Movie Blog for the Latest Movie Reviews, Trailers, and More

Articles of Destroyer

"Every review deserves passionate thought."

Roqoo Depot

Where science meets science fiction.

Philip K. Dick Review

A Re-read Project

Olivia’s Liver

My Life With Liver Disease

Rabid Reader's Reviews

Book Reviews from a Reader for Readers

SPeye Joe (Welfarewrites)

Joe Halewood writes about tenant and welfare wrongs

Nature's Place

The place of Nature in the 'ordinary' Spiritual Life through Meditation using Macro Photography to illustrate.

Tish Farrell

Writer on the Edge

Sensible Self Improvement

Love, Life and Happiness

100 Records That Set The World On Fire

( While No One Was Listening )

Scribble and Scrawl

Leadership, Creativity, Innovation, Inspiration

Purplerays

spiritual enlightenment and self improvement

Deidra Alexander's Blog

I have people to kill, lives to ruin, plagues to bring, and worlds to destroy. I am not the Angel of Death. I'm a fiction writer.

@ShashaSelflove

Staying Positive

ipekseyhanpoyrazkarayel

Asla İdeallerinden Vazgeçme Asla! Never Give Up Your İdeals Never!

Yakup Uykutalp

"Yazmak Yaşamaktır"

Good Thoughts

One Step At a Time

Kev Brockschmidt, Illustrator

Flotsam and Jetsam on the Cartoon Art Sea...

Art(ish)

Micke Nikander, Finland

AFQ

Trusted advice for the curious life - ANSWER FOR QUESTION

gooferie

Erie's first fake news source!

moviejoltz

The website where movies count

INDIHOPE

Make This World A Better Place

The WordPress.com Blog

The latest news on WordPress.com and the WordPress community.

drawthepublic

illustrator Russell Jackson

ILLUSTRATION AGE

THE ULTIMATE RESOURCE FOR ILLUSTRATORS

Movie Nation

Informed film criticism, against the grain --since 1984.

conradbrunstrom

Things I never thunk before.

ELLIS NELSON BOOKS

young adult, middle grade, children's books

Pratchett Job

Rereading Discworld, one book at a time

TracyB.art

“Modern Impressionist Art” by Tracy Bezesky

A-wing and A-way

The Influence of Birds on Culture

THE FORESTER ARTIST

Creating art on the big canvas and the small ones too

Hortus Closus

Pour vivre heureux, vivons cachés

Palimpsest

noun ° pa·limp·sest ° Something having usually diverse layers or aspects apparent beneath the surface; something that has changed over time and shows evidence of that change.

%d bloggers like this: