Ronnie Dyson

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Ronnie Dyson
Birth nameRonnie Dyson
Born(1950-06-05)June 5, 1950
OriginWashington, D.C., United States
DiedNovember 10, 1990(1990-11-10) (aged 40)
GenresSoul, rhythm and blues
OccupationsSinger, actor
Years active1969–1990
LabelsColumbia, Cotillion
 
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Ronnie Dyson
Birth nameRonnie Dyson
Born(1950-06-05)June 5, 1950
OriginWashington, D.C., United States
DiedNovember 10, 1990(1990-11-10) (aged 40)
GenresSoul, rhythm and blues
OccupationsSinger, actor
Years active1969–1990
LabelsColumbia, Cotillion

Ronnie Dyson (June 5, 1950 — November 10, 1990)[1] was an American singer and actor.

Contents

Career

Born in Washington, D.C.,[1] Dyson grew up in Brooklyn, New York where he sang in church choirs. At just 18 years of age, he won lead part in the Broadway production of Hair, debuting in New York in 1968.[2] Dyson became an iconic voice of the 1960s with the lead vocal in the show's anthem of the hippie era, "Aquarius". It is Dyson's voice leading off the song and opening the show with the famous lyric "When the Moon is in the seventh house, and Jupiter aligns with Mars".

Dyson also appeared in the 1969 film, Putney Swope.[2]

After Hair, Dyson pursued his stage career with a role in Salvation in 1970. His recording of a song from the Salvation score "(If You Let Me Make Love To You Then) Why Can't I Touch You?", successfully launched his record career, breaking into the Top 10 of the Billboard Hot 100 chart, peaking at #8 in 1970. The follow-up, "I Don't Wanna Cry" was a strong R&B seller, climbing to #9.

In 1971, "When You Get Right Down To It" (a more dramatic cover version of a hit the previous year for The Delfonics), made the US charts, and reached #34 in the UK Singles Chart in December that year.[3]

His record company, Columbia Records sent him to Philadelphia in 1973 to be produced by Thom Bell, one of the premier producers of the day, for several tracks. Bell's highly orchestrated style suited Dyson with hits including "One Man Band", which reached #28 on the Hot 100 and #15 on the R&B chart, and "Just Don't Want To Be Lonely" (#60 pop, #29 R&B). These appeared on an album which was also made up of re-mixes of some earlier recordings, including "When You Get Right Down To It".

Dyson remained with Columbia working with top-line producers for another three albums, The More You Do It (1976), Love in All Flavors(1977) and If The Shoe Fits (1979). The title track of the first of the three resulted in one of the singer's biggest-selling records, reaching #6 R&B. It was produced by Chuck Jackson and Marvin Yancy, who had been responsible for successfully launching the career of Natalie Cole with a series of hits. They also produced hits for Chicago soul group, The Independents with whom Jackson was also lead singer.

Dyson then moved to Atlantic subsidiary, Cotillion in 1981 for two albums and several singles which were only moderately successful. His acting and singing career had begun to stall in the late 1970s due to ill health and it was in 1983 that Dyson appeared on the R&B chart for the last time on Cotillion with "All Over Your Face".[4] His final solo recording was "See the Clown" in 1990.[2]

Dyson died at the age of 40 from heart failure in late 1990, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.[1]

A posthumous release on Society Hill Records appeared in 1991, when a duet with Vicki Austin, "Are We So Far Apart (We Can't Talk Anymore)" dented the Billboard R&B chart, reaching #79 during a five week run.[5]

Discography

Chart singles

YearSingleChart Positions
US Pop[6]US
R&B
[7]
UK[8]
1970"(If You Let Me Make Love To You Then) Why Can't I Touch You?"89-
"I Don't Wanna Cry"509-
1971"When You Get Right Down To It"943734
1973"One Man Band (Plays All Alone)"2815-
"Just Don't Want To Be Lonely"6029-
1974"We Can Make It Last Forever"-62-
1976"The More You Do It (The More I Like It Done To Me)"626-
"(I Like Being) Close To You"-75-
1977"Don't Be Afraid"-30-
1978"Ain't Nothing Wrong"-77-
1982"Heart To Heart" /
"Bring It On Home"
-57 / 66-
1983"All Over Your Face"-23-
1991"Are We So Far Apart (We Can't Talk Anymore)"-79-

Studio albums

YearAlbumChart positions[9]Record label
USUS
R&B
1970(If You Let Me Make Love To You Then) Why Can't I Touch You?5512Columbia Records
1973One Man Band13234
1976The More You Do It30
1977Love In All Flavors45
1979If The Shoe Fits
1982Phase 2Cotillion Records
1983Brand New Day53
"—" denotes the album failed to chart

See also

References

  1. ^ a b c Dead Rock Stars Club details
  2. ^ a b c Allmusic biography
  3. ^ Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 174. ISBN 1-904994-10-5. 
  4. ^ Allmusic discography
  5. ^ Top R&B/Hip-Hop Singles 1942-2004 - Joel Whitburn - Publishers Billboard ISBN 0 - 89820 160 - 890000
  6. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2003). Top Pop Singles 1955-2002 (1st ed.). Menomonee Falls, Wisconsin: Record Research Inc.. p. 214. ISBN 0-89820-155-1. 
  7. ^ Whitburn, Joel (1996). Top R&B/Hip-Hop Singles: 1942-1995. Record Research. p. 127. 
  8. ^ Betts, Graham (2004). Complete UK Hit Singles 1952-2004 (1st ed.). London: Collins. p. 243. ISBN 0-00-717931-6. 
  9. ^ "Ronnie Dyson US albums chart history". allmusic.com. http://www.allmusic.com/artist/p17194/charts-awards/billboard-albums. Retrieved 2011-01-11. 

External links