Biography


Gerald Levert

 

 

 

A contemporary soul singer whose smooth yet robust vocals brought energy and emotion to even his most serene recordings, Gerald LeVert grew up in the shadows of his father Eddie LeVert Sr. of the O’Jays. As a child, his father’s status in the music industry nurtured and helped prepare Gerald for his prosperous music career as a writer, arranger, producer, and performer. As Gerald was entering his adulthood, his good friend Marc Gordon, and his brother Sean, formed the trio LeVert. They recorded their first single entitled “I’m Still” on the independent Tempre label. Even though Gerald was still maturing as a vocalist, his powerful, stirring delivery on the single is worthy of praise. Peaking on the Billboard R&B charts at number 70, it survived for eight weeks. 

Nonetheless, that single set up a deal with Atlantic Records the following year, and it could not have been a better move. Initially, Gerald recorded with the group, scoring five number one singles, seven Top Ten singles, and four Top 20 singles on the Billboard R&B charts, including the Reggie and Vincent Calloway-written and produced number one single “Casanova,” which also peaked at number four on the Billboard pop charts. He also managed to make room for a duet with label mate Miki Howard, recording the number four single “That’s What Love Is.” In 1991, Gerald released his solo debut album, Private Line. The title track spawned his first number one single as a solo artist on the Billboard R&B charts. The following year, Gerald came back with a duet with his father and scored another number one single with “Baby Hold on to Me” and the number three single “School Me,” reminiscent of Babyface’s “Whip Appeal.” However, in the midst of all his success, Gerald’s only major pop appeal remained the “Casanova” single. 

Pop producer David Foster presented a pop tune to Gerald and “I Swear” became a number one and Top 20 hit on the pop and R&B charts respectively. Subsequently, Gerald returned to Foster’s stable to record “I’d Give Anything” also produced by Foster. Formerly a number four country hit for Boy Howdy under the title “She’d Give Anything,” Gerald’s version managed a pop Top 30 hit. Intended for crossover appeal, the single was actually a bigger hit on the R&B charts, peaking at number four and reinforcing Gerald’s major following among R&B music lovers. 

In addition to his impressive string of hits, the Cleveland, OH, native rendered his services as songwriter, vocalist, and producer to many artists, such as the O’Jays, Barry White, Stephanie Mills, Troop, Teddy Pendergrass, the Winans, Patti Labelle, Rude Boys, and on and on. In 1997, Gerald added another dimension to his prosperous career; he joined forces with R&B vocalists Keith Sweat and Johnny Gill under the acronym LSG, spawning the hit single “My Body.” As a solo act, he released Love & Consequences the year following, returning in 1999 with G. He continued to be extremely productive throughout the early 2000s, releasing the albums Gerald’s World, G Spot, Stroke of Genius, and Do I Speak for the World before 2005. Shortly after completing a personal memoir with his father, as well as another album, Levert died on November 10, 2006, at the age of 40. By mistake, he had taken a lethal combination of prescription and over-the-counter drugs. The album he had just completed, In My Songs, was released a day before Valentine’s Day 2007. Something to Talk About, recorded with his father, followed that June. Craig Lytle, Rovi


 

Eddie Levert online upload 500x500

Eddie Levert

 Eddie Levert, Sr. is one of the founders and lead singers of the legendary R&B group, The O’Jays. Known for his raspy voice and sexy moves, Eddie has a range that takes him from alto to second tenor. His style is full of emotion and deep passion. To add to his resume, Levert has written and produced many hits as well as mentoring his very successful sons Gerald and Sean who also became major forces in the music industry. With a career that spans over 50 years, Eddie Levert has done and seen enough to write many books, one of which him and his late son Gerald have already completed (‘I Got Your Back’ pub. 2008).

To understand Eddie Levert, you can start with the journey of the O’Jays and keep going because there is much more. Eddie Levert was born June 16, 1942 in Bessemer, Alabama. At the age of 6 Eddie moved to Canton, Ohio where he attended church regularly and joined the church choir and began his musical journey. As Eddie continued singing into his teenage years he became a recognized voice in the church choir, sang in school plays and performed regularly on a gospel radio show. By the time he reached high school, young Eddie Levert knew that singing was what he wanted to do, teaming up with classmates Walter Williams, William Powell, Bobby Massey and Bill Isles to form a group called the Triumps. The Triumps played locally in Canton opening for different acts, playing sock hops and just about everything that came up. Their big break came when The Triumphs traveled to Cinncinatti to canvas King Records. King Records President Sid Nathan, immediately impressed, changed their name to The Mascots and signed them to his label. The Mascots’ popularity grew as their songs could be heard with increased frequency on Cleveland radio stations. In 1969, The O’Jays signed with Philadelphia International Records where they released hit after hit and were propelled to stardom. The O’Jays later signed with EMI-Manhattan Records and Levert and Williams began co-writing and producing their own tracks. Their EMI debut album, “Let Me Touch You”, went to number three R&B and boasted “Lovin’ You,” the number one R&B hit from the summer 1987.

 

In 1984, Eddie saw a proud moments as his sons Gerald and Sean, both still in high school, announced that they wanted to follow their dad’s footsteps and make their way in the music industry. Eddie, using his influence, introduced his young sons around the industry while warning them that dad could help open the doors but it was themselves that would have to make it! And make it they did, as they teamed up with good friend Marc Gordon recording under the group name LeVert with four of their seven albums going platinum. In 1992 Eddie and son Gerald recorded “Baby Hold On to Me” which hit #1 R&B and #37 Pop on the charts. In 1995 Eddie and son Gerald recorded “Father & Son” Album with “Already Missing You” hit #7 R&B and #75 Pop on the charts. The album began the very successful ‘Father and Son” tour that continues for years to come. In 1996 Eddie and son Gerald recorded “Wind Beneath My Wings” which hit #30 on the R&B charts. In 1998 The O’Jays receive the Rhythm & Blues Foundation’s Pioneer Award presented by Eddie Levert’s son Gerald at a ceremony in New York. In 2006, upon returning from a very successful South African tour with sons Gerald and Sean, tragedy struck as Eddie’s son Gerald unexpectingly lost his life due to interactions between his prescribed medications. In 2007 Eddie and son Gerald’s album recorded in 2006, “Something To Talk About” was released followed by the publication of the highly anticipated book “I Got Your Back” co-authored by Eddie and son Gerald. In 2008 tragedy struck again as Eddie’s son Sean became a fatality of being denied needed prescription medication by government officials in Ohio. Later that year, while still trying to cope with the lost of both sons, Eddie and his late son Gerald are presented with “Best Duo or Group” Image Award. In 2009, The O’Jays were awarded BET’s ‘Lifetime Achievement Award’ and Eddie Levert was awarded the “Heroes and Legends Pacesetter Award”. On January 29, 2011 The O’Jays received the “Trumpet Lifetime Achievement Award”. Throughout Eddie Levert’s career, the O’Jays have contributed 10 Gold Albums with 9 going Platinum and 10 #1 hits.

  Currently, Mr. Levert is actively performing and touring the world with the O’Jays well as performing as a solo artist currently touring with Johhny Gill, Keith Sweat and others.. In the Winter of 2011, Eddie Levert, Sr. completed his debut solo CD, “Eddie Levert: I Still Have It”, due to be released Spring of 2012. Mr. Levert is currently busy in the studio working on his next major project; the much anticipated release of the latest O’Jays CD. Throughout Eddie Levert’s career, the O’Jays have contributed 10 Gold. Eddie Levert currently resides in Las Vegas, NV with his wife Raquel and daughter Ryan.

Awards

  • Nominated four times for a Grammy Award, last time being at the 44th Annual Grammy Awards; “Love Train”-1973; “For the Love of Money” – 1974 and Use Ta Be My Girl” – 1978.

  • Nominated four times for an American Music Award

  • 1990 American Music Award for “Best Duo” and “Best Group”

  • NAACP Award for “Outstanding Vocal Group” in 1991

  • Soul of America Award in 1993

  • Award for “Lifetime Commitment to the Community for service and beautiful sounds that continue to change the face of music” from 100 Black Men, October 20, 2001

  • Award for “Supporting the UNCF”, given to The O’Jays at the 18th Annual Mayors Ball in Atlanta, Georgia (United Negro College Fund Mask Award)(12/15/01)

  • Soul Train 2002 Quincy Jones Award for “Outstanding Career Achievement in the field of Entertainment”

  • 2003 Wall of Fame Honor in Canton, Ohio

  • 2003 State of Ohio – for Outstanding Achievements

  • 2003 Mayors Citation from the City of Canton, Ohio

  • 2003 Honorary Sheriff conferred on

    The O’Jays by The city of New Orleans

  • 2004 Vocal Group Hall of Fame in Sharon, Pennsylvania.

  • 2005 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland, Ohio.

  • 2009 Black Entertainment Television Lifetime Achievement Award

  • 2011 Trumpet Lifetime Achievement Award

Eddie Levert's CD album release Now Available Click Here...    Latest News: This Fathers Day 2016 weekend date has been postponed, date TBD    Upcoming: Levert Father & Son II DVD Coming 2017 - Learn More...