R.I.P. Bobby Caldwell


Soul crooner Bobby Caldwell died Tuesday at age 71. His wife attributed a prescription for a fluoroquinolone antibiotic in 2017 as the root cause of his fatal illness. Caldwell is known for his 1978 hit “What You Won’t Do For Love” which has been sampled by 2Pac, Erykah Badu and Aaliyah and covered by Phyllis Hyman, Boyz II Men amongst others. He started his career in 1970 as a guitarist for Little Richard before signing a solo recording contract in 1978. The record company hid the fact that he was a white man by omitting his photo from the album cover. Fans were shocked to see him on tour with Natalie Cole because they were convinced by his voice that he was Black.  He wrote other great songs like “Open Your Eyes,” “Carry On” and “My Flame” which still have a pulse and are also referenced and sampled to this day. His talent for writing was not limited to himself as he was able to write for others including the hit “The Next Time I Fall” for Peter Cetera and Amy Grant.  Robert Flack, Boz Scaggs, Al Jarreau, Roy Ayers and Neil Diamond would also benefit from his pen. By the late ’90s, he was recording Big Band arrangements and singing standards. Cool Uncle released in 2015 was his last solo recording.