The Manhattans

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R&B for me was the type of songs that we wrote and sang had true meaning to them. Today, if a song has a hook, that’s all that is needed–no substance, just a hook

Gerald Alston, www.soultrain.com, 22 August 2013

The Manhattans are an American popular R&B vocal group, with a string of hit records spanning four decades, their best known million-selling songs being 1976’s “Kiss and Say Goodbye” and 1980’s “Shining Star”. The Manhattans, originally from Jersey City, New Jersey, formed in 1962 with members George “Smitty” Smith, Edward “Sonny” Bivins, Winfred “Blue” Lovett, Kenny “Wally” Kelley, and Richard “Ricky” Taylor. During the ’60s, The Manhattans took their influence from doo-wop; however, after the death of lead singer George Smith in 1970 caused by a brain tumour brought on by falling down a flight of stairs, The Manhattans reinvented themselves as sweet smooth balladeers.