Gene Chandler Biography

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Eugene Dixon, 6 July 1937, Chicago, Illinois, USA. Recalled for the gauche but irresistible 1962 US number 1, ‘Duke Of Earl’, Chandler’s million-selling single in fact featured the Dukays, a doo-wop quintet he fronted (Eugene Dixon, Shirley Jones, James Lowe, Earl Edwards and Ben Broyles). His record company preferred to promote a solo artist and thus one of soul’s most enduring careers was launched. Temporarily bedevilled by his ‘dandy’ image, the singer was rescued by a series of excellent Curtis Mayfield -penned songs, including ‘Rainbow’ and ‘Man’s Temptation’. These were hits in 1963, but the relationship blossomed with ‘Just Be True’ (1964) and the sublime ‘Nothing Can Stop Me’ (1965), both US Top 20 singles. Chandler later recorded under the aegis of producer Carl Davis, including ‘(The) Girl Don’t Care’, ‘There Goes The Lover’ and ‘From The Teacher To The Preacher’, a duet with Barbara Acklin. Switching to Mercury Records in 1970, ‘Groovy Situation’ became another major hit, while an inspired teaming with Jerry Butler was an artistic triumph. Chandler’s career was revitalized during the disco boom when ‘Get Down’ was an international hit on Chi-Sound (Chandler was also a vice-president for the label). Further releases, ‘When You’re Number 1’ and ‘Does She Have A Friend’, consolidated such success, while recordings for Salsoul, with Jaime Lynn and Fastfire, continued his career into the 80s.

Source: The Encyclopedia of Popular Music by Colin Larkin. Licensed from Muze.

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