Happy Birthday LutherApril 20, 2011
Sorry Stevie, Ruben, and even Al Green. No one has a voice smoother than Luther.
Luther Vandross sang backup for many popular singers and performed in many bands throughout the 70s and 80s. He also released a slew of solo LPs but never really hit it big until 1981, when he released Forever, For Always, For Love, and the follow up in 1982, Never Too Much.
As I mentioned many times before, I was a teenager at the time and rock radio played Def Leopard/ J. Geils/Queen in heavy rotation (and maybe also Genesis, Asia, and REO Speedwagon), so I listened to the urban stations out of Detroit. Besides playing all of the early hip hop (Kurtis Blow) and electro (Soul Sonic Force), they played these 2 Luther albums non-stop because they had so many amazing tracks: Never Too Much, Sugar and Spice, Don’t You Know That, House is Not a Home, Bad Boy/Having a Party, You’re the Sweetest One, Better Love, and She Loves Me Back were all played in heavy rotation.
Two side notes: Luther Vandross briefly attended Western Michigan University, where both of my siblings graduated. Also, and probably just as unimportant, It’s not mentioned on his fan page nor his wiki page, but Luther was a closet homosexual. I don’t really know when or how I knew this (I probably just assumed)), because Vandross never revealed he was gay for his entire life- he died “in the closet”. It wasn’t until after his death in 2005 that the media “revealed” the truth that he was indeed a homosexual. I mention it only because its a bit sad that he died with such a secret.
Most readers probably know him for his later pop hits. For now , forget that later stuff and take a listen to these gems:
MP3: Luther Vandross- Never Too Much (1981)
MP3: Change-The Glow of Love (1980)
He appeared on Sesame Street in 1970:
Luther Vandross would’ve turned 60 today. Rest in Peace, bro.