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Famous Like Me > Actor > R > David Ruffin

Profile of David Ruffin on Famous Like Me

Name: David Ruffin  
Also Know As:
Date of Birth: 18th January 1941
Place of Birth: Wyanot, Mississippi, USA
Profession: Actor
From Wikipedia, the free Encyclopedia
David Ruffin.

David Ruffin (Davis Eli Ruffin) (January 18, 1941 – June 1, 1991) was an African-American soul singer, most famous for his work as lead singer of The Temptations from 1964 to 1968.

Born in Whynot, Mississippi, David Ruffin and his older brother Jimmy Ruffin moved first to Memphis, Tennessee, and later to Detroit, Michigan in the 1950s, both pursuing careers in music. Both Ruffins were eventually signed to the local Anna label as solo artists; the label was absorbed by Motown Records in 1962. In January 1964 David Ruffin became a member of Motown singing group the Temptations after founding member Elbridge "Al" Bryant was fired from the group.

Ruffin sang backgrounds on the Temptations' records until November 1964, when songwriter/producer Smokey Robinson wrote a single especially for Ruffin to sing lead on. That song, "My Girl", became the group's first #1 single and its signature song.

The follow-ups to "My Girl" were also extremely successful singles, including "Since I Lost My Baby" (1965), "Ain't Too Proud to Beg" (1966), "All I Need" (1967), and "I Wish It Would Rain" (1967). Ruffin's passionate and dramatic performances endeared him to the Temptations' audiences and fans. After Temptations spin-off group The Supremes had their name changed to Diana Ross & the Supremes in early-1967, Ruffin felt that he should become the focal point of the Temptations, just as Diana Ross was for her group, and began demanding that the group name be changed to David Ruffin & the Temptations. He became addicted to cocaine, and began irregularly missing group meetings, rehearsals, and performances. Refusing to travel with the other Temptations, Ruffin and his then-girlfriend Tammi Terrell traveled in a custom limo.

In mid-1968, the Temptations decided that they could no longer put up with Ruffin's arrogance, and they replaced him with former Contour Dennis Edwards. Extra security had to be hired to keep Ruffin from attending Temptations concerts and jumping onstage. For example, when the group started to perform a Ruffin-era song such as "My Girl" or "Ain't Too Proud to Beg", he would grab the microphone from Edwards and perform to a delighted crowd. The following year, Ruffin sued Motown, who settled with him by offering him a recording contract.

Ruffin's first solo single was a song originally intended for the Temptations, "My Whole World Ended (The Moment You Left Me)". The single reached the US pop & R&B Top Ten, and Ruffin continued releasing solo material into the 1970s, with his final Top Ten hit being 1975's "Walk Away From Love", produced by Van McCoy. He also recorded an album with his brother Jimmy during this period. After leaving Motown in 1977, Ruffin recorded for Warner Brothers, and later with RCA, accompanied by former Temptations bandmate Eddie Kendricks.

After being inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1989 with the other Temptations, Ruffin, Kendrick, and Dennis Edwards began touring and recording as Ruffin/Kendrick/Edwards: former leads of the Temptations. The project was cut short, however, when David Ruffin, age 50, died of a drug overdose on June 1, 1991 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.



David Ruffin

  • 1969: My Whole World Ended
  • 1969: Feelin' Good
  • 1969: Doin' His Thing
  • 1971: David (unreleased, finally issued by Motown/Hip-O in 2004)

The Ruffin Brothers

  • 1971: I Am My Brothers Keeper (with Jimmy Ruffin)

David Ruffin

  • 1973: David Ruffin
  • 1975: Who I Am
  • 1976: Everything's Coming Up Love
  • 1977: In My Stride
  • 1979: So Soon We Change
  • 1980: Gentelman Ruffin

Ruffin & Kendrick

  • 1988: Ruffin & Kendrick

This content from Wikipedia is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article David Ruffin