Ali-Ollie Woodson
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DETROIT (AP) - Ali-Ollie Woodson, who led the legendary Motown quintet The Temptations in the 1980s and '90s and helped restore them to their hit-making glory with songs including "Treat Her Like A Lady," has died, a friend said. He was 58.

Woodson died Sunday in southern California after battling cancer, Motown Alumni Association President Billy Wilson said. Wilson said Woodson's wife, Juanita, told him about the death Sunday.

Woodson was not an original member of the group, which had several lineup changes since it started in the 1960s. But he played an integral part in keeping the Temptations from becoming just nostalgia act.

By the early 1980s, the Temptations were no longer posting hit after hit like they did in the 1960s and '70s with classics such as "Papa Was a Rolling Stone," ''My Girl," and "I Wish It Would Rain."

The group had lost original members, and Woodson was charged with replacing Dennis Edwards, whose passionate voic e defined the group during the 1970s.

Woodson's voice, though similar to Edwards' with its fiery tone, was distinct in itself, and helped the group notch the R&B hits "Treat Her Like A Lady," ''Sail Away," and "Lady Soul," from 1984 to 1986.

"He had this swagger about himself. He was cool. He had a coolness about himself that was really very inviting," said Wilson. He said he first met Woodson in 1980 before Woodson joined the group and that he last spoke with his friend about two weeks ago.

Despite his fame, Woodson was "always a gentleman and always polite and kind to everybody. If we ever asked him to do anything, he never said, 'well, it's going to cost you.' He'd always say, 'yeah, let's go,'" said Wilson, who founded the Detroit-based Motown association in the mid-1990s.

"He was just a star performer. Wonderful person. Wonderful, wonderful person. He was very kind."

Messages were left Monday for a producer and a manager who worked with Woodson. A recorded message at a phone number for his wife said the voice mailbox was full.


Copyright © 2010 The Associated Press
Published in Atlanta Journal-Constitution on May 31, 2010.
Memories & Condolences
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933 entries
February 18, 2021
Love your music. What a voice.
Denise Nevins
Friend
January 29, 2021
Miss your beautiful voice
Marcia FORDE
Acquaintance
January 23, 2021
I saw Mr Woodson at a Club in Redlands California, called "Whiskey Creek ". Really enjoyed his show and talked with him. Very humble,polite Gentleman. In my opinion he was the greatest voice of the Temps. "TREAT HER LIKE A LADY" is my "go to song"! And "FOR LOVERS ONLY" is my "go to album" both featuring Mr Woodson. My music genre is smooth jazz but R&B is right there! OLLI WOODSON, MARVYN GAYE, TEDDY PENDERGRASS are my epitome of great male R&B singers. I wonder what they would have accomplished if their lives hadn't been cut so short. But maybe we will hear their voices again. RIP MR OLLIE WOODSON a gifted singer and gentleman.
Fred Ashe
January 23, 2021
I saw Mr Woodson at a Club in Redlands California, called "Whiskey Creek ". Really enjoyed his show and talked with him. Very humble,polite Gentleman. In my opinion he was the greatest voice of the Temps. "TREAT HER LIKE A LADY" is my "go to song"! And "FOR LOVERS ONLY" is my "go to album" both featuring Mr Woodson. My music genre is smooth jazz but R&B is right there! OLLI WOODSON, MARVYN GAYE, TEDDY PENDERGRASS are my epitome of great male R&B singers. I wonder what they would have accomplished if their lives hadn't been cut so short. But maybe we will hear their voices again.
Fred Ashe
October 1, 2020
A musical genius that left a magical legacy of vocals We lost an earthly vocalist but heaven gained yet another that displayed such love and passion for his talents. Rest peacefully Ollie..........
Arlene Swilling
September 28, 2020
May God bless you and your family in this time of sorrow.
Linda MOORE
September 26, 2020
Love his performances still. Every song he sang he made it his own. I recognize his voice each time a temptation song is playing.
Dorothy Travis
September 4, 2020
i still miss you my friend we share Alot of good times ,having the chance to share the stage with you singing as backup was great ,to this day you are truly missed sleep with the Angels my Brother
charlene Moore
Friend
August 11, 2020
I still listen to the temptations music today but my husband and I listen to treat her like a Lady the most. We miss you Ollie.
Christine crews
Friend
June 6, 2020
Ollie was a great, great singer and writer of music. The work he did on the song "Touch Me" and "My Girl" was outstanding. His vocal range was incredible and the way that he could maintain octaves was tremendous. Even though Ollie has been deceased since 2010, I just wanted to say that he will always be remembered as a "Temptation" forever. Continued resting in peace Mr. Woodson. You will always be missed.
Preston Williams
Friend
May 10, 2020
Always a gentleman with a beautiful unforgettable voice
Marcia
Friend
April 14, 2020
More Love!
Ric Bowens
March 31, 2020
Mr Woodson, you brought smiles to so many. Thank You now youll injoy a and everlasting joy! God bless the family, Stay encouraged to know that hes in the Lords hands now!
Will Morgan
March 12, 2020
I love U
Blanco Woodson
Acquaintance
January 1, 2020
You will always be missed!
Emma Lyons
November 3, 2019
I know,,,GOD has u gone but not forgotten 9yrs later still listening 2U,,, LOVE GJL...
G Lewis
Acquaintance
October 15, 2019
Best Temptation ever! Sincere condolences to your wife and children. Rest in Heaven Ali!
Jeri Crosby
July 5, 2019
Sitting here listening to Soul to Soul and just truly missing this beautiful voice may he Rest In Peace
Blondie Collins
June 1, 2019
In loving memory of a beautiful soul gone too soon.
Sylvia Wilson
May 7, 2019
Well on March 29,2019 both you and Uncle Jimmie (James Martin) are walking around heaven singing.Two brothers are embracing each other one again. Both of you have earned your wings. Though you will be missed I know God needed you both more.Rest in heaven
Precious Robinson
May 1, 2019
Wow one of the greatest voices ever!! Love "Treat Her Like A Lady"..Mr. Woodson you were fantastic!! I listen to Treat her Like A Lady everyday and watch the AWESOME video and dance with it!! Such a great talent gone too soon!! You will be missed forever!! RIP!!
Deborah Furey
April 28, 2018
When I didn't"t hear from the Temptations for a while, I did not think about them. When "Treat Her Like A Lady came out, WOW!! Was very impresses. Fell in love with voice of lead singer!! RIP my brother. Peace to the Woodson family
Alice Walker
April 28, 2018
Alice Walker
March 1, 2018
I used to love to see you perform the song Treat Her Like a Lady Mr.Ali you are a down to earth entertainer. Continue to entertain in "HEAVEN'much love
Tracy Cabarrus
February 10, 2018
Remembering The late Temptatios.
David Ruffin36@gmail.com Blue
February 9, 2018
Love from the D.
Ali,ali,ali the fun times we all had will never be forgotten,and. Neither will you.truly a gentleman and a powerful singer,w words could never describe your talent.may god open his love to your soul. Thanks for the wonderful memories.love from the D.(Detroit)
Fernandez
February 3, 2018
demetrius bellamy;;rocky mount, N.C TREATING HER LIKE A LADY TILL THIS DAY AND FOR EVER
DEMETRIUS BELLAMY
November 30, 2017
To the best singer ever. Your light will always shine.
Don't a Craig
November 30, 2017
Donna Craig
April 4, 2017
Mr. Ollie was one of the best singers of R & B history. His work on "For Lovers Only" was a true masterpiece. U will be sorely missed. R.I.P.
Perry Jackson
February 14, 2017
I am (not was) "AM" a HUGE fan of Ali-Ollie-Woodson. In my small circle I am considered an authority on R&B music. I'll stand by this statement long as I live: Ali-Ollie-Woodson is the greatest singer "EVER"! Ali could reach notes effortlessly where others could not. And that set him apart. Superman, Spiderman, etc. That's fake. To singer like Ali Ollie-Woodson, a power that ordinary didn't have, that's the definition of a Super hero. If I could be wealthy or sing like Ali, I'll take singing. I listen to this guy EVERY day. I'm sure he and his lovely wife didn't always agree. Once he starts to sing it's over. And that's my case to say Ali is the best EVER!... PS: I'd love to see his story on Unsung.
Greg Lucas
December 19, 2016
Linda Gaines
December 18, 2016
I learned of ollie passing about a year ago. I met ollie in atlanta in 1980 while I was working for Issac hayes. His manager Delos is de gum an were friends and I use to take ollie with me to concerts at the old omni where most large acts where held, which I had back stage prevelegde and I could bring two guest with me and I would always take ollie with me, and when issac's band the movement Diba need in 1981, ollie offer me to live with him and share the rent of a house he had, but I became I'll and I came back to cleveland, because my family and the best doctors was at cleveland clinic, and I just disappeared . RIP MY OLD FRIEND! Love Easy.
November 4, 2016
RIP Mr. Wooodson, though I never got a chance to hear you live, you are truly a beast. You brought the Temptations back to life. No one can duplicate you!! You were truly one of a kind singer.
Sheryl
October 6, 2016
Ollie, just discovered your talent two days ago. This is one of the all time greatest jams ever written...."Treat her like a lady" congratulations to you for writing and singing it like no other can. The song is part of my life soundtrak, follows me everywhere. Love you.
val jamison
July 30, 2016
Maggie Finley
July 29, 2016
tracey williams
July 21, 2016
Valenda Newell
March 5, 2016
Prayers to the Woodson family. Ali, will be greatly missed. As a Vocalist, entertainer, showman, and friend. "Miss you my brother"
Gregory Newman
August 23, 2015
I enjoyed his music so much that I cried every time he sang at city of refuge,he will truly be missed
Louvenia Anderson
August 23, 2015
WOW THIS IS A SHOCK! I'm FINDING THIS OUT 5 YEARS LATER. BEEN LISTENING TO HIS MUSIC COUPLE OF MONTHS AGO AND TODAY. GOD BLESS HIS FAMILY. I LOVE THIS MAN MOVES AND VOICE WAS OUT OF THE ORDINARY. WE LOVE YOU, BUT GOD LOVES YOU BEST...LAVAUGHN HOWARD IN MEMPHIS TN.
LAVAUGHN HOWARD
July 29, 2015
I sure loved his voice."Treat her like a lady" was my all time west coast swing song.
Katherine Morris,Tucson,Arizona
Katherine Williams Morris
July 21, 2015
That voice, that voice, that voice! You will truly be missed! You live on through your music! God bless! Jennifer C. from Cleveland,Ohio
February 18, 2015
Was just watching Mr.Woodson,on YouTube,when he and the late Mr.Womack had appeared on The Arsenio Hall Show , My God,What a Talent!!He and Mr. Womack,Gave heart tugging,riveting performances!!May they both rest in Perfect Peace!Mr. Woodson was and is (in my opinion,)one of the most God gifted singers ......Ever!!!!
Linda Lyte
December 20, 2014
Mr. Woodson: You are remembered and missed by all your friends and fans. May God bless your beloved wife and family this holiday season.
B Morgan
December 13, 2014
RUBY RAMIREZ RANDLE
December 13, 2014
MR,WOODSON , YOUR MISSED AND LOVED,GONE BUT NEVER EVER FORGOTTEN, YOU WILL ALWAYS BE #1.WE THANK FOR LEAVING US WITH THE BEAUTIFUL MEMORY OF YOUR MUSIC.. RIP
RUBY RAMIREZ RANDLE
December 1, 2014
I was so crazy about "Lady Soul" he was so smooth and a very gentleman.
Connie Cummings
November 22, 2014
After becoming friends and breaking bread together as well as helping out on a few community based projects here in Fort Washington, Maryland you died on my birthday May 30. I really miss you man and will never forget the laughs that you, Joe and I had. And thanks for the song about my wife in always treating her like a lady. May bless you always. Billy
Bill Rice
October 15, 2014
I listen to Mr. Woodson. His songs along with the Temptations songs he lead are on the phone. I go to sleep listening to him. You will forever be missed. R.I.P. May God continue to bless your family.
C Wms.
September 14, 2014
There is no doubt about it and no one can challenge the fact that Ali-Ollie Woodson is one of the greatest singers to ever live. He was a personal friend of mind who was always a gentleman and devoted husband to Juanita. Always had time for his #1 fan which I am. What a voice and what a deliverer of song. He had style, class and that great sense of humor. He was also a great actor. Followed his career religiously and was part of the funeral. My prayers will continue to be with the family. Everyone who heard his wonderful voice was blessed.
Absolutely one of the greatest lead singers of the Temps even David Ruffin
made a statement to that not taking anything away from Mr. Ruffin. RIP Gone too soon! Thank you Jesus for sharing him with us. He truly had a gift from you. It still makes me sad to think of him being gone, but he is now in God's hands and will be part of the heavenly choir singing lead.
Joanie Crouse
September 12, 2014
One of the greatest singers ever!! A God-given voice that cannot be described. Happy Birthday and RIP. ~September 12, 2014
Wanda BELL
September 3, 2014
This guy was truly underrated. He has to have a lead part in the choir in heaven.
Larry Trower
August 3, 2014
I was getting ready to give up on my husband, after playing Girl Don't Walk Away. I talked to the Lord and realized that I want my man back. I believe that you are looking over heavens balcony. R I P OLLIE :-)
Joan Broward
June 7, 2014
Never be forgotten such a amazing singer with a beautiful voice and such a great guy rest in piece.
LaTonya Williams
May 30, 2014
Heaven truly gained an angel Rip
Lyneka Harris
May 30, 2014
On this 4th anniversary of having lost on earth a wonder man, but gained in heaven a wonderful sprint., our hearts are still heavy at the lost of you, our minds are still filled with love for you, and are souls are filled with your wonderful music. RIP! Gone to soon. (Die Hard Fan) Miami, FL
May 27, 2014
You still live in our hearts. Your awesome voice will be here forever and we'll never forget you. The greatest singer of all times. God continue to bless your wife and children.
Ali Woodson Fan Club of
May 25, 2014
Remembering you, Mr. Woodson on your fourth anniversary in heaven.
I ask God to bless your family
Evelyn, Jean & Charles
May 7, 2014
Ollie you are truly missed it still seems that you are down here with us,but one day we will all be together RIP forever dorothy singletary buffalo ny
dorothy singletary
April 15, 2014
Lord I still think of this talented man. He was an anointed man as well. I know he is singing in God's heavenly choir. Sleep Ollie, sleep.
Evelyn Parker
March 17, 2014
Ollie, you are missed so very much.
W. Irvin
February 23, 2014
We miss you
Traveon Smith
February 9, 2014
As I remember Sir Ali Ollie Woodson, I am reminded of a song he sang entitled Believe That off his album Right Here All Along. The song encourages all to hang in there an wait for a better day. That being said, does does anyone know when Mr. Woodson's gospel album will be release. He indicated in an article he had been circulating it around different churches. This world could use some inspiration and who better than Mr. Ali Ollie Woodson!
January 16, 2014
To the Woodson family: May God continue to bless you and heal your hearts. Ali was a dynamic singer and gentlemen. HE OWNED EVERYTHING THAT HE SANG, GOSPEL OR R&B. My favorite performance of Ali was when he sang "Some enchanted evening" ,"Touch me" and "I'm not alone". I could go on and on. RIP Ali, you don't have to suffer anymore.
lajeana guy
January 16, 2014
Here it is 2014 and I am just learning of the passing of this wonder and talented man. I have read and listened to sorry many share their love for him and I wanted to do the same. He seemed like a real MAN and a great person. I so love his music and his smile (flashing his pearly whites). Just like when we lost Martin Luther King, Jr. a and Mandela, it think the world grew a bit dimmer by losing such a great man. Heartfelt thanks to his family for sharing him with the world.
T Wilson
September 13, 2013
Proud to call Ali Ollie Woodson a friend. The world is a sadder place without you...miss you x
Dawn Randle
September 3, 2013
IN THIS WORLD I AM GLAD THERE WAS YOU!!!


CECIL BEZUIDENHOUT(ELDORADO ESTATES.JHB.SA)
August 16, 2013
This man had the most voice off and angel oh I love his song treat her like a lady my husband bought me the CD every time I hear that song it makes happy&feel good & 2no I got a husband & he treats me like a lady we going to. Miss you Mr Ali Woodson R.I.P. our brother in Christ Jesus
Hattie&Alfred Ingram
August 10, 2013
Ive always LOVED HIS VOICE. I was sadden to know that he passed a while back. I did not have the pleasure of meeting him. But everything he was on TV I WATCHED. Good News was my fav. The Whoopie Show. WOW, I KNOW THE ANGELS ARE LOVING HIS VOICE, WE WERE TRULY BLESSED.
Pamela Farley
July 24, 2013
I HAVE FOLLOWED HIS MUSIC FROM DAY ONE THEIR WELL NEVER BE ANOTHER OLLIE WE ALL MISS YOU. FOREVER MISSED
NANCY WILEY
July 20, 2013
I met Mr. Woodson as a stagehand in Charlotte N.C. ,I told him how I'd enjoyed his performance and he was gracious ,cool performer.He will be remembered.
Carlton Cunningham
July 4, 2013
I have been a fan of the Temptation since a teen. When Ruffin left as lead thought there wound never be a voice like that again; along came Ali....God bless the Temptations
Ralph B
June 22, 2013
You will be dearly missed by all But your music will live on in our hearts forever. Terry Hester(Minneapolis, Mn)
May 11, 2013
SHIRLEY JACKSON
May 11, 2013
MY NAME IS SHIRLEY JACKSON IM FROM.S.F. CALIF. IM JUST LEARNING ABT MR WOODSON DEATH HE WAS IN A CLASS BY HIS SELF WHEN IT CAME TO SINGING MY PRAYERS ARE WITH THE ENTIRE FAMILY I WILL BE LISTENG FOR HIS VOICE IN HEAVEN SHIRLEY.
SHIRLEY JACKSON
March 24, 2013
I'm so sorry for your loss. Just know Mr.Woodson is at peace and that he is singing in Heaven. I remember him singing with the Temps.Ollie's music will play forever. He completed them.
Terry S.
March 17, 2013
Your memory will live on through all of the Motown lovers. What a great legacy. Wishing your loved ones all the best in life.
Nazarene Mckinney
March 7, 2013
Praise God 4u and your wonderful gift of music.
Look forward 2 seeing you and hearing u at home in Heaven.
J C
March 2, 2013
May God bless you and your family in this time of sorrow.
July 21, 2012
I'm going to miss you dearly
debra lockhart
July 6, 2012
Marva
June 19, 2012
From Detroit, Michigan the home of Motown we truly, truly miss you Ali you were one of a kind. May the Lord give your family the comfort they need to live on. One of my favorite songs is TOUCH Me Baby. Treat her like a lady will always be a classic. Let there be no mistake Ali will always be the man with the voice. AMEN!
Love to all of your family and fans. R.M.Eubanks
June 19, 2012
From Detroit, Michigan the home of Motown we truly, truly miss you Ali you were one of a kind. My the Lord give your family the comfort they need to live on. Love to all of your family and fans. R.M.Eubanks
Rainelle Mallory-Eubanks
June 5, 2012
U were truly a Temptation....second to none....RIP...U were truly blessed with a gift...
Kevin H
March 31, 2012
Even though you;re gone, I love you and your music so very much. Wish I could have met you personally. A true fan of your music. Love to your wife and family.
- Carla Hagins (Raleigh, NC)
February 20, 2012
Grief can be so hard, but our special memories help us cope. Remembering you and your loved one today and always.
Donald & Sharon Somerville
January 10, 2012
my cousin past away and all we listen to in KALAMAZOO MICHIGAN was listen to TREAT HER LIKE A LADY.. the whole lp. not to many soulful stations that way. everytime i hear anything about your family member friend husband uncle dad artistMR WOODSON OF COURSE it makes me think of my cousin. ANNETTE PEETE. im very sorry for your lose. it hurts my heart also. he had my full attention when he sang. im still enjoyin his music, but its hard. in every dark cloud there is a silver linin.I will reach for mine, and yall do the same. to his family.Hold on to your FAITH. TERESA.DETROIT
TERESA PEETE
December 17, 2011
No one to this day has a range like Mr. Woodson. He could sing 4 or 5 octaves over the scale by just taking one breath!!! God bless him and his family. CB (Tampa, FL.)
Clifford Brown Sr
December 16, 2011
You will be greatly missed. I met you in Atlanta about four years ago when you were inducted into the Atlanta R&B Hall of Fame. I sat with you, Gerald Austin, Freda Payne and Millie Jackson.

Having never been around STARS, you demonstrated that you were just a regular guy. The songs you've sang would never have been the same without that smooth silky voice of yours. While all of your songs are great, one, to me, stands above the rest. When I'm with my lady, I dedicate your song, 'AT LAST' to us. I'll miss you, but I don't mind God have such a beautiful singing Angel in his midst.

Rest in Peace
William Long
November 10, 2011
Shirley Caldwell
October 24, 2011
I Loved Ollie Woodson, there is no one with a voice like his to this day... He was the very best to me...RIP Ollie, you are loved...
rosemary wyatt
October 7, 2011
He will be missed dearly. Although other lead singers of the group were good his melodic voice had something special.
Gone too soon. RIP. We loved him but GOD LOVED HIM BEST.
Charlean Price
September 4, 2011
May God bless you and your family in this time of sorrow.
August 29, 2011
JESUS OUR COMFOTER GIVES HOPE
VROXANE JOHNSON
August 29, 2011
BLESS GOD FOR GIFT'S IN MEN
VROXANE JOHNSON
August 26, 2011
Rest in peace Ali, you will never be forgotten and your voice will always remain in our minds and hearts. You are and were truly one of the best artists that has graced our lives. You are in a better place now although me miss you here. God Bless.
Maria Walker
July 4, 2011
Love you and miss you badly Ollie. I play and listen to your songs daily with tears flowing down my face. You will always be my "superstar". Your voice and style always make me happy. Then reality sets in and i again start missing my all time soul stirring ali ollie woodson but i do have you right hear in my heart. ~GONE TOO SOON~
Carolyn States
May 31, 2011
Ali, 1 year, I hear your voice, feel your presence, know you will always be there, my friend and brother forever, Eric W.
ERIC W
May 29, 2011
Lolita Smith
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