Motown legend Bobby Taylor dies at age 83

(July 23, 2017) Bobby Taylor was a legend in the annals of Motown for two reasons: He was the lead vocalist of the group Bobby Taylor & the Vancouvers, which scored with the hit “Does Your Mama Know About Me” in 1968; but perhaps more importantly, Taylor has been credited by many for discovering The Jackson 5, one of the most important soul music groups of all time. Sadly, Bobby Taylor has died after a battle with cancer.

(July 23, 2017) Bobby Taylor was a legend in the annals of Motown for two reasons: He was the lead vocalist of the group Bobby Taylor & the Vancouvers, which scored with the hit “Does Your Mama Know About Me” in 1968; but perhaps more importantly, Taylor has been credited by many for discovering The Jackson 5, one of the most important soul music groups of all time. Sadly, Bobby Taylor has died after a battle with cancer.

The 83 year old Taylor was a doo-wop staple in the 50s, quietly working with such acts as Little Anthony & The Imperials and Frankie Lymon & The Teenagers, before teaming with guitarist Tommy Chong (yes, the same Tommy Chong who would later be ½ of the comedy duo Cheech and Chong), Eddie Patterson, Wes Henderson, Robbie King and Ted Lewis to form The Vancouvers. Motown signed the sextet and they scored immediately with “Does Your Mama Know About Me,” a hit on both the pop and soul charts. The Vancouvers landed a few more hits, most notably “Malinda,” before splitting up.

In 1968, after seeing The Jackson 5 perform as a warm up act, Taylor brought the group to the attention of the Motown brass, leading to the signing of the quintet that would become Motown’s signature act of the 1970s, and the springboard for Michael Jackson’s historic solo career. And Taylor played a continuing key role. In addition to discovering the group, Taylor mentored the Jackson 5 and helped produce the quintet’s smash debut album.

Taylor continued to perform as a solo act over the years, and reunited briefly with The Vancouvers in the 1980s for a recording in the UK.

As a performer and as a producer, Bobby Taylor played a key role in the development of soul music over the past half century. And, like millions of fans everywhere, we will be mourring the passing of this all-time great. Rest In Peace, Mr. Taylor.

You can fine Bobby's Taylor's Facebook page here.

Thanks to Gary Van den Bussche of the DSG label for letting us know

 
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