‘What You Will not Do for Love’ singer Bobby Caldwell dies : NPR

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‘What You Will not Do for Love’ singer Bobby Caldwell dies : NPR
‘What You Will not Do for Love’ singer Bobby Caldwell dies : NPR


Bobby Caldwell performs onstage on the 2013 Soul Practice Awards on the Orleans Enviornment on Friday, Nov. 8, 2013 in Las Vegas.

Frank Micelotta/Frank Micelotta/Invision/AP


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Frank Micelotta/Frank Micelotta/Invision/AP


Bobby Caldwell performs onstage on the 2013 Soul Practice Awards on the Orleans Enviornment on Friday, Nov. 8, 2013 in Las Vegas.

Frank Micelotta/Frank Micelotta/Invision/AP

Bobby Caldwell, a soulful R&B singer and songwriter who had a significant hit in 1978 with “What You Will not Do for Love” and a voice and musical model adored by generations of his fellow artists, has died, his spouse stated Wednesday.

Mary Caldwell informed The Related Press that he died in her arms at their house in Nice Meadows, New Jersey, on Tuesday, after a protracted sickness. He was 71.

The graceful soul jam “What You Will not Do for Love” went to No. 9 on the Billboard Sizzling 100 and No. 6 on what was then referred to as the Sizzling Promoting Soul Singles chart. It grew to become a long-term normal and career-defining hit for Caldwell, who additionally wrote the tune.

The tune was lined by artists, together with Boyz II Males and Michael Bolton, and was sampled by Tupac Shakur on his posthumously launched tune “Do For Love.”

Different Caldwell songs had been sampled by hip-hop artists together with The Infamous B.I.G., Frequent, Lil Nas X and Probability the Rapper.

Tales abound, a lot of them shared on social media after his dying, of listeners being stunned to be taught that Caldwell was white and never Black.

Caldwell appeared solely in silhouette on the self-titled debut solo album on which “What You Will not Do for Love” seems.

“Caldwell was the closing chapter in a era by which document execs wished to cover faces on album covers so maybe perhaps their artist may have an opportunity,” Questlove stated on Instagram.

“Thanks in your voice and reward #BobbyCaldwell,” Questlove wrote.

Probability the Rapper shared a screenshot on Instagram of a direct message trade he had with Caldwell final yr when he requested to make use of his music.

“I will be honored should you pattern my tune,” Caldwell wrote.

“You’re such an inspiration to me and lots of others,” Probability informed him. He stated within the publish that he had by no means been thanked for sampling a tune earlier than and has “not felt damaged like this at a stranger’s passing in so lengthy.”

Born in New York and raised in Miami, Caldwell was the son of singers who hosted a musical selection TV present referred to as “Suppertime.” A multi-instrumentalist, he started performing professionally at 17, and received his break enjoying guitar in Little Richard’s band within the early Seventies. Within the mid ’70s, Caldwell performed in numerous bar bands in Los Angeles earlier than touchdown a solo document deal.

Caldwell would by no means have a success that got here shut in prominence to “What You Will not Do for Love,” however he launched a number of revered albums, together with Eighties “Cat in The Hat” — on which he appeared prominently on the quilt sporting a fedora — and 1982’s “Carry On,” on which he was his personal producer and performed all of the devices.

His tune “Open Your Eyes” from “Cat in The Hat” was lined by John Legend and sampled by Frequent on his Grammy-nominated 2000 single “The Mild.”

Within the Nineteen Nineties, Caldwell shifted to recording and performing American requirements, together with songs made fashionable by Frank Sinatra and Nat King Cole, he beloved in his youth.

Along with Mary, his spouse of 19 years, Caldwell is survived by daughters Lauren and Tessa and stepdaughter Katie.



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