Monday, April 2, 2012

April 2: Edwin Starr - "War (What is it Good For)" - died on this date in 2003...

... he was 61 when he passed away. Starr suffered a heart attack and died while taking a bath at his home in Bramcote near Nottingham, England.


Born Charles Edwin Hatcher in Nashville, Tennessee and raised in Cleveland, Ohio, Edwin Starr is most famous for his Norman Whitfield produced singles of the 1970s, most notably the number one hit "War."

In 1957, Starr formed a doo-wop group, The Future Tones, and began his singing career. Starr lived in Detroit, Michigan, in the 1960s and recorded at first for the small record label Ric-Tic, and later for Motown Records after it absorbed Ric-Tic in 1968.

The song which began his career was "Agent Double'O'Soul" in 1965, a reference to the James Bond films popular at the time. Other early hits included "Headline News," "Back Street," a cover of The Miracles "Way Over There," and "S.O.S. (Stop Her On Sight)."

He recorded more soul music for the next three years before having an international hit in "25 Miles" in 1968, and which peaked at #6 in the U.S.

The biggest hit of his career, which cemented his reputation, was the Vietnam War protest song "War" (1969). The song spent three weeks in the top position on the U.S. Billboard charts, selling over three million copies, and earning a gold disc.

Continued below video and Amazon portals ...)

(Press album cover for direct link to the Amazon Website):
20th Century Masters: The Best of Edwin Starr (Millennium Collection)


"War" appeared on both Starr's War and Peace album and its follow-up, Involved. Involved also featured another song of similar construction titled "Stop the War Now," which was a minor hit in its own right.

Moving to England in 1973, Starr continued to record. In 1979, Starr reappeared on the charts with a pair of disco hits, "Contact" and "H.A.P.P.Y. Radio." "(Eye-To-Eye) Contact" was the more successful of the two, peaking at #65 on the U.S. pop charts, #13 on the R&B chart, #1 on the dance chart, and #6 on the UK Singles Chart.

No comments: