Teddy Pendergrass

Infobox musical artist

Name = Teddy Pendergrass
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Img_size =
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Background = solo_singer
Birth_name = Theodore DeReese Pendergrass
Alias = Teddy P
Teddy Bear
Born = birth date and age|1950|3|26
Died =
Origin = Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States
Instrument = Vocals, piano, guitar, drums
Genre = R&B, Soul, Gospel, Jazz
Occupation = Singer, Songwriter, Composer
Years_active = 1970-Present
Label =
Associated_acts = Harold Melvin & The Blue Notes
The O'Jays
McFadden and Whitehead
URL = [http://www.teddypendergrass.com Official site]

Theodore "Teddy" DeReese Pendergrass, Sr. (born March 26, 1950) [http://www.allmusic.com/cg/amg.dll?p=amg&searchlink=TEDDY|PENDERGRASS&sql=11:gifwxqr5ldhe~T1 allmusic Biography] ] is an American R&B/soul singer and songwriter. Pendergrass is also known as Teddy P, TP, or Teddy Bear.


He was born to Ida Geraldine Epps and the late Jesse Pendergrass (who was murdered in 1962), who left when Pendergrass was very young and was never a part of his life. He was a student at the old Thomas Edison High School for Boys. However, he dropped out in the 11th grade to go into the music business. According to author Robert Ewell Greene, Teddy Pendergrass was ordained a minister as a youngster. Later he was to become a drummer for a band, and later lead singer. The church was his initiation for talent and eventual success.

Musical career

Pendergrass' career began when he was a drummer for The Cadillacs, which soon merged with Harold Melvin & the Blue Notes. Melvin invited Pendergrass to become the lead singer after he jumped from the rear of a stage and started singing his heart out. Months later the group signed with Gamble & Huff on the then CBS subsidiary Philadelphia International Records in 1972. The Blue Notes had hits such as "I Miss You", "Bad Luck", "Wake Up Everybody", "The Two Million Seller", "If You Don't Know Me By Now", and many more. Following personality conflicts between Melvin and Pendergrass, Pendergrass launched a solo career and released hit singles like "The More I Get the More I Want", "Close the Door", "I Don't Love You Anymore", "Turn Off the Lights", and more.

His first solo album was self titled "Teddy Pendergrass" (1977), followed by "Life is a Song Worth Singing" (1978), "Live Coast to Coast" and "Teddy" (1979), 1980's "TP" and the final Philadelphia International Records album "It's Time for Love" (1981).


On March 18, 1982, in the Germantown section of Philadelphia on Lincoln Drive, Pendergrass was involved in an automobile accident when the brakes failed on his Rolls-Royce and he hit a tree. Pendergrass and his passenger, Tenika Watson, a transsexual nightclub performer with whom Pendergrass was casually acquainted, were trapped in the wreckage for 45 minutes. While Watson walked away from the accident with minor injuries, Pendergrass suffered a spinal cord injury leaving him paralyzed from the waist down. [cite news|url=http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=9A00EEDD1639F93AA25750C0A964948260|title= Singer Suffers Spinal Injury In Auto Crash in Philadelphia|date=1982-03-19|publisher="New York Times"|accessdate=2008-08-03] [cite news|url=http://www.ew.com/ew/article/0,,301425,00.html|title=The Trials of Teddy Pendergrass|date=1994-03-18|publisher="Entertainment Weekly"|accessdate=2008-08-03]

In August 1982, PIR also released "This One's for You", while Pendergrass was recovering from an automobile accident. In 1983, the album "Heaven Only Knows" was released. This was his last album containing his pre-accident recordings. Ten years after the accident, he recorded a version of "One Shining Moment," the theme for March Madness Basketball on CBS.

After completing physical therapy, he returned to the studio to record the album "Love Language", featuring the 1984 ballad "Hold Me", a duet with a then-unknown Whitney Houston. He also returned to the public for a performance on July 13, 1985 at the historic Live Aid concert in Philadelphia, then continued to record throughout the 1980s and 90s. [cite web|url=http://www.disability-marketing.com/profiles/teddy-pendergrass.php4|title=Return to Stage a Personal Triumph for Teddy Pendergrass|last=Piner|first=Mary-Louise|publisher=disability-marketing.com|accessdate=2008-08-03]

Later career

In 1996, he starred alongside Stephanie Mills in the touring production of the gospel musical "Your Arms Too Short to Box with God". [cite news|url=http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m1355/is_n19_v89/ai_18142954?tag=content;col1|title=Teddy Pendergrass stars in 'Your Arms Too Short to Box With God.'|last=Christian|first=Margena |date=1996-03-25|publisher="Jet"|accessdate=2008-08-03] In 1998, Pendergrass released his autobiography entitled, "Truly Blessed". [cite news|url=http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m1355/is_n24_v94/ai_21257376?tag=content;col1|title=Teddy Pendergrass|date=1998-11-03|publisher="Jet"|accessdate=2008-08-03]

Pendergrass divorced Karen Still-Pendergrass in 2002, after 15 years of marriage, stating irreconcilable differences.Fact|date=August 2008

In 2006, Pendergrass announced his retirement from the music business. [cite web|url=http://www.wavenewspapers.com/default.asp?sourceid=&smenu=88&twindow=Default&mad=No&sdetail=5621&wpage=&skeyword=&sidate=&ccat=&ccatm=&restate=&restatus=&reoption=&retype=&repmin=&repmax=&rebed=&rebath=&subname=&pform=&sc=1019&hn=wavenewspapers&he=.com|title=People Get Teddy|last=Alemour|first=Olu|date=2007-05-03|publisher=wavenewspapers.com|accessdate=2008-08-03] In 2007, he briefly returned to performing to participate in "Teddy 25: A Celebration of Life, Hope & Possibilities", a 25th anniversary awards ceremony that marked Pendergrass' accident date, but also raised money for his charity, The Teddy Pendergrass Alliance, and honored those who helped Pendergrass since his accident. [cite news|url=http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m1355/is_26_111/ai_n19344903?tag=content;col1|title=Teddy Pendergrass' all-star gala marks 25th anniversary of near-fatal car accident|last=Waldron|first=Clarence |date=2007-07-02|publisher="Jet"|accessdate=2008-08-03]



*1977: "Teddy Pendergrass" (Philadelphia International) - US Pop #17, US R&B #5
*1978: "Life Is a Song Worth Singing" (Philadelphia International) - US Pop #11, US &B #1
*1979: "Teddy" (Philadelphia International) - US Pop #5, US R&B #1
*1979: "Live! Coast to Coast" (Philadelphia International) - US Pop #33, US R&B #5
*1980: "TP" (Philadelphia International) - US Pop #14, US R&B #3
*1981: "It's Time for Love" (Philadelphia International) - US Pop #19, US R&B #6
*1982: "This One's for You" (Philadelphia International) - US Pop #59, US R&B #6
*1983: "Heaven Only Knows" (Philadelphia International) - US Pop #123, US R&B #9
*1984: "Love Language" (Asylum) - US Pop #38, US R&B #4
*1985: "Greatest Hits" (Philadelphia International) - US R&B #65
*1985: "Workin' It Back" (Asylum) - US Pop #96, US R&B #6
*1988: "Joy" (Elektra) - US Pop #54, US R&B #2
*1991: "Truly Blessed" (Elektra) - US Pop #49, US R&B #4
*1993: "A Little More Magic" (Elektra) - US Pop #92, US R&B #13
*1997: "You and I" (Surefire) - US Pop #137, US R&B #24
*1998: "The Best of Teddy Pendergrass" (The Right Stuff)
*1998: "This Christmas I'd Rather Have Love" (Surefire/Wind-Up) - US R&B #83
*2001: "Greatest Slow Jams" (The Right Stuff) - US R&B #98
*2002: "From Teddy with Love" (Razor & Tie) - US R&B #63
*2004: "Love Songs Collection" (The Right Stuff) - US R&B #70


*1977: "I Don't Love You Anymore" - US Pop #41, US R&B #5
*1977: "The Whole Town's Laughing At Me" - US R&B #16
*1978: "Close the Door" - US Pop #25, US R&B #1
*1978: "Only You" - US R&B #22
*1979: "Turn Off the Lights" - US Pop #48, US R&B #2
*1979: "Come Go With Me" - US R&B #14
*1980: "Shout and Scream" - US R&B #21
*1980: "It's You I Love" - US R&B #44
*1980: "Can't We Try" - US Pop #52, US R&B #3
*1980: "Love T.K.O." - US Pop #44, US R&B #2
*1981: "Two Hearts" (with Stephanie Mills) - US Pop #40, US R&B #3
*1981: "I Can't Live Without Your Love" - US R&B #10
*1982: "You're My Latest, My Greatest Inspiration" - US Pop #43, US R&B #4
*1982: "The Gift of Life" / "Nine Times Out of Ten" - US R&B #31
*1982: "I Can't Win for Losing" - US R&B #32
*1984: "Hold Me" (with Whitney Houston) - US Pop #46, US R&B #5
*1984: "You're My Choice Tonight (Choose Me)" - US R&B #15
*1985: "Never Felt Like Dancin'" - US R&B #21
*1986: "Love 4/2" - US R&B #6
*1986: "Let Me Be Closer" - US R&B #67
*1988: "Joy" - US Pop #71, US R&B #1
*1988: "Love Is the Power" - US R&B #57
*1990: "Glad to Be Alive" (with Lisa Fischer) - US R&B #31
*1991: "It Should've Been You" - US R&B #1
*1991: "I Find Everyting In You" - US R&B #31
*1993: "Voodoo" - US R&B #25
*1994: "Believe In Love" - US R&B #14
*1994: "I'm Always Thinking About You" - US R&B #90
*1997: "Don't Keep Wastin' My Time" - US Pop #90, US R&B #39
*1997: "Give It to Me" - US R&B #57

Awards & nominations


External links

* [http://teddypendergrass.com Official site] (needs Macromedia Flash)
* [http://www.teddypendergrassalliance.org/ The Teddy Pendergrass Alliance]
* [http://www.allmusic.com/cg/amg.dll?p=amg&sql=11:gifwxqr5ldhe Teddy Pendergrass] at Allmusic
* [http://www.discogs.com/artist/Teddy+Pendergrass Teddy Pendergrass] at Discogs

NAME= Pendergrass, Teddy
ALTERNATIVE NAMES= Pendergrass, Theodore DeReese
SHORT DESCRIPTION= Singer, Songwriter, Composer
DATE OF BIRTH= March 26, 1950
PLACE OF BIRTH= Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States

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