William Franklin Guest, a founding member of Gladys Knight & the Pips, grew up singing. Guest sang backup vocals for the group's many hits, including "I Heard It Through the Grapevine" (1967) and "Midnight Train to Georgia."
Known for his wit and easygoing manner, the singer, who family and friends called "Red" and "Bae-bruh" loved a good joke and always made time to mentor aspiring artists, they said.
"His legacy will live on because of the contributions he made not just as a Pip but to the company and young artists," said friend Alfred "Butch" Burch, CEO of Detroit-based Crew Records, which he co-founded with Guest, Pip member Edward Patten and others. "He retained his voice quality and enthusiasm for music until the very end. He was a good guy and a good friend."
Guest of Jonesboro died of congestive heart failure on Dec. 24 in Detroit at the age of 74. Read the news obituary
Published by Atlanta Journal-Constitution on Jan. 9, 2016.