Legendary Singer Percy Sledge Dies at 74

NEW ORLEANS - MAY 04 : Percy Sledge performs on stage at the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival in New Orleans, Louisiana on May 04,1990. (Photo by David Redfern/Redferns)

Legendary R&B singer Percy Sledge died today at 74. He is best know for his #1 pop and soul hit “When a Man Loves A Woman” released in 1966. The song earned a million-selling, Gold-certified disc.

Born November 25,1940 in Leighton, Alabama, Sledge worked as a hospital orderly before his rise to fame. “When a Man Loves a Woman” was his first song recorded under a contract with producers Ivy and Marlin Greene. A series of ballads produced by that pair and recorded by Sledge were called “emotional classics for romantics of all ages” by rock critic Dave Marsh. Sledge’s inspiration for his first hit came when his girlfriend left him for a modeling career after he was laid off from a construction job in 1965. The song was a #1 hit in the US and hit twice in the UK (#4 in 1966 and #2 upon reissue in 1987.)

Sledge also charted in the 1970s with “I’ll Be Your Everything” and “Sunshine”. He was particularly popular in the Netherlands, Germany and the African continent. He typically did 100 concerts per year in South Africa.

Sledge is survived by his second wife, Rosa Sledge, whom he married in 1980. Of his 12 children, two became singers.

He died of liver cancer at his home in Baton Rouge, LA. on April 14, 2015. He will be missed by music lovers everywhere.

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Tim Black
Tim Black
Tim Black is a software developer, author, day trader and real estate investor. He's been known to do some rock climbing, backpacking, off-roading, shooting and keyboard playing. He spends much of his time in the Dallas TX area. In addition to NoozSaurus, Tim writes the occasional guest blog at Technorati.com and WinnersEdgeTrading.com. I have a wonderful wife and BFF of 38 years, two awesome kids, one awesome foster kid, two awesome sons-in-law and several dozen kids that call me Daddo. :) Yes, God has richly blessed me. If you want to know more about me, message me and we’ll do coffee. I like coffee. :)