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Dennis Edwards (1943 - 2018), lead singer of The Temptations

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Hits included "Cloud Nine" and "Papa Was a Rollin' Stone"…

Dennis Edwards, lead singer of Motown’s famed vocal group The Temptations, died Thursday, Feb. 1, 2018, according to multiple news sources. He was 74.

His family told CBS News that he died in Chicago, two days before he would have turned 75. According to The Associated Press, his booking agent, Rosiland Riche Roberts, said that Edwards died after a long illness.

Edwards replaced David Ruffin as lead vocalist of The Temptations in 1968. He brought soulful lead vocals to the band’s psychedelic, funk, and disco era of the late 1960s and 1970s. The group’s song lyrics also shifted during this era to address social issues. Hits during that time included “Cloud Nine,” “I Can’t Get Next to You,” “Ball of Confusion (That’s What the World is Today),” and “Papa Was a Rollin’ Stone.”

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He left the band in 1977, around the time the band changed labels from Motown to Atlantic Records. He returned to The Temptations for several reunion albums and tours during the 1980s.

As a solo artist Edwards scored a hit with “Don’t Look Any Further,” that reached number two on the R&B charts in 1984.

He was briefly married to Ruth Pointer, of The Pointer Sisters, in the 1970s. The couple had a daughter, Issa Pointer.

He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1989 as a member of The Temptations. During his tenure the group won Grammys for “Cloud Nine” and “Papa Was a Rollin’ Stone.”

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