This article needs additional citations for . verification (February 2010) Doris Troy (January 6, 1937 – February 16, 2004) [1 ] was an [2 ] American R&B singer and songwriter, known to her many fans as "Mama Soul". Life and career [edit ]
She was born as
Doris Elaine Higginsen, in [1 ] The Bronx, the daughter of a Barbadian Pentecostal minister. She later took her grandmother's name and grew up as Doris Payne. Her parents disapproved of "subversive" forms of [3 ] music like rhythm & blues, so she cut her teeth singing in her father's choir. She was working as an usherette at the Apollo where she was discovered by James Brown.
Troy worked with
Solomon Burke, The Drifters, Cissy Houston, and Dionne Warwick, before she co-wrote and recorded " Just One Look", which hit #10 in the US Billboard Hot 100 in 1963. The song has been [4 ] covered by The Hollies, Major Lance, Linda Ronstadt, Bryan Ferry, Anne Murray, Klaus Nomi, and Harry Nilsson. Her only foray into the UK Singles Chart, "Whatcha Gonna Do About It", peaked at #37 in December 1964. [1 ]
solo career peaked, she sang back-up for Rolling Stones, Humble Pie, Kevin Ayers, Pink Floyd (on their album ), Dark Side of the Moon [2 ] George Harrison, Johnny Hallyday, Vivian Stanshall, Dusty Springfield, [2 ] Nick Drake, Junior Campbell and Carly Simon.
She was signed by
The Beatles to their Apple Records label in 1969, and released the album the following year, co-produced by Troy and George Harrison. Troy worked in the Doris Troy UK throughout the 1970s, appearing at Ronnie Scott's Club and recording a live album, The Rainbow Testament. Her People Records album, Stretching Out, was not a big seller. Mama, I Want To Sing is a stage musical based on her life, and was co-written with her sister, Vy, a popular [2 ] New York radio personality. It ran for 1,500 performances at the Heckscher Theatre in Harlem. Troy played her own mother, Geraldine. Chaka Khan played her aunt in the London production, as did Deniece Williams. The musical was made into a motion picture, starring Ciara, Patti Labelle and Hill Harper, which was released on DVD in 2012.
Troy died from
emphysema at her home in Las Vegas, Nevada, aged 67. [2 ] References [edit ] External links [edit ]