Teddy Pendergrass, whose real name is Theodore Pendergrass, was an American singer who will stay in history for having notably been the singer of the group 'Harold Melvin & The Blue Notes'. But also for having produced 5 consecutive Platinum certified albums in the R&B field during his solo career.
Singer who started his artistic career not as a singer but as a drummer for various local groups in Philadelphia in the late 1960s.
And it was in 1970 that Harold Melvin spotted him as a drummer and offered him to join his group. During a performance, the young drummer will be called upon to sing and this is where his fate will change as his performance does not go unnoticed and will push Melvin to propel him to lead singer. A promotion that will literally change the fate of the group which will go from shadows to light in a shattering way.
The adventure with the Blue Notes will last until 1975 and it is from the year 1977 that the singer really takes his career in hand with the release of a first solo album. Eponymous album which offers the singer his first personal hits of very high caliber thanks to the singles "I don’t love you anymore" and "The whole town laughing at me".
Success confirmed and amplified a year later with the release in 1978 of the album "Life is a song worth singing", a huge album from which the flagship single "Close the door" was mainly extracted.
But that's without counting on the release of the album "Teddy" in 1979, album that will stay as his biggest album success. An album that paradoxically will not manage to produce world class singles. Only the title "Turn off the lights" will more or less save the furniture ...
The singer's popularity was such at this time, especially with women, that his producer organized “special women” tours for him ! A popularity such that the specialized media no longer hesitate to call him "The Black Elvis", especially since the singer has purchased a mansion equivalent to the King's Graceland.
The adventure continued at the start of the 1980s with the successful release of the album "TP", an album with once again limited global influence and which only came out thanks to the singles "Can't we try" and " Love TKO".
New album "It’s time for love" in 1981, an album that concludes the incredible series of 5 consecutive Platinum certified albums, an incredible feat for an R&B artist for the time in the USA. Album carried at arm's length by the single "You’re my latest, my greatest inspiration".
An incredible adventure which was to be brought to a halt a year later in 1982 by a car accident to which the singer was to be the victim, an accident which would at first sight be caused by the sabotage of the Rolls Royce which he then drove. Accident that will leave him quadriplegic, paralyzed from the chest to the bottom !
1982 also saw the release of the album "This one's for you", an album of lesser success than its predecessors and which only contained recordings dating from before the accident. Ditto for the album "Heaven only know" which will be released in 1983 and which will experience only a limited level of success.
The artist nevertheless got back to work and released the album "Love language" in 1984, an album that saw him come back to the race in an impressive way. Notably thanks to the huge single "Hold me" which he performs as a duet with a young stranger by the name of...Whitney Houston !
At the rate of one album per year since his solo debut, it was the turn of the album "Workin’ it back " to be released in 1985, whose flagship single was "Love 4/2". Title which will be released a year later in 1986.
We will have to wait 2 years and the year 1988 to see the release of the next album "Joy", album which confirms that the artist is still trendy and which will offer him his last global top hit with the single which bears the name of the album.
Unfortunately, the 90s will be much less favorable and all the albums that will come out subsequently will only experience an average level of success and the artist will never again find the incredible level of success reached at the end of the beginning of the early 70s/early 80s.
And the adventure will come to an end on January 13, 2010 when the singer dies at the age of 59 from respiratory failure.
To discover or rediscover.
Discography (among others ...) :
I don’t love you anymore 1977
You can't hide from yourself 1977
The whole’s town laughing at me 1977
Close the door 1978
Only you 1978
It don’t hurt now 1978
Turn off the lights 1979
Come go with me 1979
Shout and scream 1979
It's you I love 1980
Can’t we try 1980
Love T.K.O. 1980
Two hearts 1981
I can't live without your love 1981
You're my latest, my greatest inspiration 1981
The gift of life 1982
Nine times out of ten 1982
I want my baby back 1984
Hold me 1984
You're my choice tonight (Choose me) 1984
Somewhere I belong 1985
Never felt like dancin’ 1985
Love 4/2 1986
Let me be closer 1986
2 A.M. 1988
Love is the power 1988
Glad to be alive 1990
It should've been you 1991
Believe in love 1994
I'm always thinking about you 1994
Don't keep wastin' my time 1997
Give it to me 1997
1977 ... first solo title and huge success directly. The transition from the Blue Notes is done in the best possible way and allows the singer to now exist alone in broad daylight ...
1977 ... we thought he only existed through the Blue Notes but he quickly demonstrated just the opposite. Rather, it was the Blue Notes that existed through him ...
1977 ... he will reveal absolutely exceptional qualities in the Intimist. Starting with this title which allows him to win his first planetary class success ...
1978 ... in a few years he will become one of the biggest sex symbols of R&B. It must be said that with titles like this, easy to melt the girls, it's clear ...
1978 ... which does not prevent him from trying some successful forays into Dance. A year 1978 which will undoubtedly remain as one of its best vintages !
1978 ... another very high class Intimist title which paradoxically will not even be classified. Anyway, a truly exceptional 1978 in every way !
1979 ... another title 'Serial lover' which allows him to show that in this field he is one of the best of the moment. And that's only the beginning...
1979 ... a talent in the Intimist which literally outclasses the competition. A competition that is chomping at the bit while waiting for a drop in inspiration on its part to return to contact. We will have to wait a little longer ...
1979 ... the Dance title of the year. It is clear that he will not know his biggest successes in this field but what he offers holds up, it is clear !
1980 ... chase the natural, it comes back at a gallop. He never deviates from the 'emotional' register for very long and you can tell that this is really part of his DNA. What talent !
1980 ... how can girls resist him with such an incredible number of glamorous titles ? It is almost impossible and he understood it well ...
1980 ... originally written for David Oliver, it is the handsome Teddy who will steal the spotlight from him and make this title one of his flagship titles. Nothing, and no one, can resist him at this stage ...
1981 ... the shocking and charming duo that was missing from its charts. It is now done with the key to a title that will go around the world. It's so much better at 2 !
1981 ... each year its share of titles 'take out the handkerchiefs'. The list of titles in this field produced by the artist is truly mind-blowing and borders on the absolute record. And it's not over !
1981 ... the proof with this new title ! It's an uninterrupted series of incredible Intimist titles since he took back his career in hand and we haven't seen it all, or at least heard it all !
1982 ... and it continues ! But how does he manage to maintain such a level of inspiration in such a demanding field ? Good question as they say ...
1982 ... even if the tempo accelerates somewhat, we know that with him it never lasts long. We must therefore take advantage of it because the rest may be much less rhythmic ...
1984 ... thing promised, thing due, the tempo slows down drastically. Rarely has an artist built his career so much almost entirely on pure and hard Intimist ...
1984 ... if that's not what we call flair, I don't know what it is then. Because taking this young unknown woman to sing the song was risky to say the least. But he has already understood everything and knows that he has next to him a real gem that asks only to be cut ...
1984 ... like a slight tremor at the start of deceleration. Nothing to worry about at the moment but the level of success is starting to decrease slightly ...
1985 ... here he arrived in soundtrack mode and for a movie that will staty as one of the defining films of the decade. But at this time, nobody knows it yet ...
1985 ... a complete artist who will have been able to do everything, whether in group, solo, duet, Intimist mode, dance mode or soundtrack mode. Hard to beat !
1986 ... impossible to chain 2 Dance titles in a row. He must systematically insert a title very gently to remind women that it is still there. We will not remake him again !
1986 ... it must be said that with such a high level of inspiration, it would be a shame not to ask for more. We take, we take !
1988 ... new planetary class hit in Dance mode, a notable fact about him. That's on the positive side. Unfortunately there is also a negative side to the case, namely that it will be his last major hit ...
1988 ... no year possible without at least 1 Intimist title. For the year 1988, it will be this one. Paradoxically, the previous Dance title will have brought him much more profit on the Charts side. The trend is reversing ...
1988 ... this one will do even worse than its predecessor. Decidedly, the wind seems to be turning for the fop. Attention danger...
1990 ... new duo of shock and charm. Unfortunately, this duo will not really have the same level of success as the previous one. It's not Whitney who wants ...
1991 ... even if the level of success no longer has much to do with what it was at the start of the 1980s, it is clear that what the artist offers is still worth the detour. We are therefore not going to shy away from our pleasure, that's clear ...
1993 ... the years go by, just like the decades, and nothing undermines his extreme talent in the 'emotional' register. A register really tailor-made for him and in which he will have shone with a thousand lights !
1994 ... a decade of 90 which saw him much more at work in the Dance register. A reorientation not necessarily paying off but which will at least have had the merit of showing him in another light ...
1994 ... well, who says Dance title says Intimist title straight away. He is no exception to the rule and gives us this title which once again floats in the air just like the others ...
1997 ... 20 years after his solo debut, the circle is about to come full circle. Here he signs his last major titles and is preparing to leave the adventure through the front door, the very large one ...
1997 ... a sumptuous title to close an incredible adventure which will have devoted him as much in group mode as in solo mode. With the key to a place of choice well-deserved in the musical Pantheon of this end of the XXth century !
Greatest Hits :