Tommy Edwards

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Tommy Edwards
Born(1922-02-17)February 17, 1922
Richmond, Virginia, U.S.
DiedOctober 22, 1969(1969-10-22) (aged 47)
Henrico County, Virginia
GenresR&B, jazz, pop
OccupationsSinger, songwriter
Years active1946-69
LabelsMGM
 
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Tommy Edwards
Born(1922-02-17)February 17, 1922
Richmond, Virginia, U.S.
DiedOctober 22, 1969(1969-10-22) (aged 47)
Henrico County, Virginia
GenresR&B, jazz, pop
OccupationsSinger, songwriter
Years active1946-69
LabelsMGM

Tommy Edwards (February 17, 1922 — October 22, 1969)[1] was a singer and songwriter. His biggest-selling record was with the multi-million-selling song, "It's All in the Game."

Contents

Career

Born Thomas Edwards in Richmond, Virginia, Edwards was an R&B singer most remembered for his 1958, Billboard No. 1, "It's All in the Game." He sang his hit song on The Ed Sullivan Show, on 14 September 1958. The song was composed by the then-future U.S. Vice-President, Charles G. Dawes in 1912, as "Melody in A Major," with lyrics written in 1951 by Carl Sigman. Edwards originally recorded and charted the song in 1951, but it only climbed to # 18 on the chart. The better-known 1958 version was on the same record label (MGM) and backed by the same orchestra leader (Leroy Holmes), but with a different arrangement more suited to the rock and roll-influenced style of the time. As well as topping the U.S. Billboard Hot 100, the song also got to number one on the R&B chart, and in the UK Singles Chart.[2] The single sold over 3.5 million copies globally, earning gold disc status.[2] The gold disc was presented in November 1958.[3] He had a more modest hit with the follow-up, "Love is All We Need," which climbed to #15 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100.

"That Chick's Too Young to Fry", written by Edwards, was a sizeable hit for Louis Jordan.[4] Edwards began recording for the Top label in 1949.[1] When MGM heard his demo of it they gave him a recording contract.[2]

Although Edwards recorded a number of other songs, none came close to achieving the same level of success, though several of his songs later became hits for other artists (such as "A Fool Such As I" by Elvis Presley, "It's All in the Game" by Cliff Richard and The Four Tops, and "Morning Side of the Mountain" recorded by Donny and Marie Osmond).

He died after suffering a brain aneurysm in Henrico County, Virginia, at the age of 47.[2] The liner notes of his 1994 Eric Records release The Complete Hits of Tommy Edwards claim his death was caused by alcoholism. While the two may be related, there is no confirmation of this.

Edwards received a Virginia Highway Marker in 2008, erected near Pemberton Elementary School, off Quioccasin Road, in Henrico County. In July 2008, Richmond mayor L. Douglas Wilder signed a proclamation declaring 15 October 2008 "Tommy Edwards Day."

In September 2012, Cherry Red Records label Shout issued a 2-CD collection of Edwards' work, entitled It's All In The Game (The MGM Recordings 1958-1960), which comprised his first four MGM albums and singles from the two years following that single's huge success.

Partial discography

Hit singles

YearSingleChart positions
U.S.U.S.
R&B
UK[5]
1951"The Morning Side of the Mountain"24
"It's All in the Game"18
"All Over Again"10
1952"Please, Mr. Sun"22
"You Win Again"13
1953"A Fool Such As I"24
"Baby, Baby, Baby"26
1954"Secret Love"28
1958"It's All in the Game"(new version)111
"Please Love Me Forever"61
"Love Is All We Need"15
1959"Please, Mr. Sun"(new version)1118
"The Morning Side of the Mountain"(new version)27
"My Melancholy Baby"262729
"It's Only the Good Times"86
"I've Been There"53
"I Looked At Heaven"100
"(New In) The Ways of Love"47
"Honestly and Truly"65
1960"Don't Fence Me In"45
"I Really Don't Want To Know"18
"It's Not the End of Everything"78

Albums

Production notes

The recording "Honestly and Truly" is only heard on compact disc in mono, because the original stereo master tape was either lost or destroyed.

The recording "Take These Chains From My Heart" is heard on compact disc in re-channeled stereo, because, as with the above song, the original stereo master was lost or destroyed.

These recordings were issued on the MGM record label, unless otherwise noted.

"It's All In The Game" (1958 version) was produced by Harry Myerson. He is assumed to be the producer for all tracks from this point forward, although this can not be confirmed.

The orchestra was conducted and the arrangements were made on all records by LeRoy Holmes.

See also

References

  1. ^ a b "Biography by Ron Wynn". Allmusic.com. http://www.allmusic.com/artist/p24274. Retrieved 7 January 2008.
  2. ^ a b c d Murrells, Joseph (1978). The Book of Golden Discs (2nd ed.). London: Barrie and Jenkins Ltd. p. 101. ISBN 0-214-20512-6.
  3. ^ Tobler, John (1992). NME Rock 'N' Roll Years (1st ed.). London: Reed International Books Ltd. p. 60. CN 5585.
  4. ^ Books.google.co.uk
  5. ^ Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 179. ISBN 1-904994-10-5.

External links