Revisit 6 Hits Of Late R&B Legend James Ingram For Some Serious Soulful Listening
As R&B icon James Ingram's soul now rests in his peace, the soulfulness of his voice and lyrics lives on in the songs his fans from all over the world will forever remember him for.
The singer and songwriter who delighted audiences and inspired generations of African-American singers to pursue careers in music was 66 years old when he passed away in Los Angeles in the early hours of January 29. Though not confirmed, reports have stated that brain cancer was what ultimately caused James' death.
Furthermore, it's speculated that the disease was a contributing factor in his gradual withdrawal from the music scene; his last major album, Stand (In the Light) was released in 2008 and followed up only by a handful of collaborations with fellow artists. Since then, James had mostly taken a back seat in his career, seldom performing or making public appearances.
But despite his absence from recent music events, news of James passing sent shockwaves in the music inudstry, deeply affecting singers who saw him as their ultimate idol and inspiration.
R&B heavyweights like Quincy Jones (the man who discovered James as a teenager and convinced him to begin a solo career), Gladys Knight, Kenny Lattimore, Yvette Nicole Brown, and Tevin Campbell paid their respects to the talent who laid the foundation for other singers to make it big in the genre, while other celebs like Shonda Rhimes, Josh Groban, Clay Aiken, and Debbie Allen did the same.
Here's what some of them had to say about the irreplaceable James:
Sending you love. Today the world lost a genius. James Ingram was a musician, artist, and humanitarian. He will be remembered for his brilliance and kind heart. https://t.co/t8JtEpygKO— shonda rhimes (@shondarhimes) January 29, 2019
I have lost my dearest friend and creative partner James Ingram to the Celestial Choir. He will always be cherished, loved and remembered for his genius, his love of family and his humanity. I am blessed to have been so close. We will forever speak his name.?? pic.twitter.com/TDJfpbbJWa— Debbie Allen (@msdebbieallen) January 29, 2019
Today I celebrate the life of James Ingram. His unmistakable voice and songwriting genius set a standard of excellence for me... James Ingram paved the way for me to sing love songs with intent and authenticity. ???? pic.twitter.com/L0cMK2s1UV— Kenny Lattimore (@kennylattimore) January 29, 2019
There are no words to convey how much my ?? aches with the news of the passing of my baby brother, James Ingram. With that soulful, whisky sounding voice, James was simply magical. He was, & always will be, beyond compare. Rest In Peace my baby bro…You’ll be in my ?? forever pic.twitter.com/oZtA9h8uZR— Quincy Jones (@QuincyDJones) January 29, 2019
James Ingram More Than Just 100 ways • RIH ???? pic.twitter.com/dIngs5NyvL— MAXWELL (@_MAXWELL_) January 30, 2019
And #JustOnce! That is just the quintessential #JamesIngram song. He also had the jam #BabyComeToMe with the amazing @pattiaustin AND he co-wrote MJ’s #PYT which I loved.— yvette nicole brown (@YNB) January 30, 2019
I am so sad to hear that he has passed. Only 66. #TooSoon #RIP
Throughout his decades-long career, James enjoyed 14 Grammy nominations, two number one and three top 10 Billboard hits, as well as a couple of nods from the Academy Awards for songs he wrote for film soundtracks. Since he carved a name for himself in the 80s, James enjoyed a soaring solo career and became an in-demand collaborator with the era's topbilled names, thanks to the signature velvety quality to his voice and heart-tugging songwriting skills.
Without a doubt, we've all heard some of James' best work on the radio, in film and television, covered by other artists, or even sung in karaoke bars more than once, and for good reason; he was a legend and one-of-a-kind singer in a league all his own.
As a tribute to James and the songs that define his legacy, check out this playlist of some of his greatest hits:
"Baby Come to Me," a duet with Patti Austin
"I Don't Have the Heart," a chart-topper
"Somewhere Out There," a duet with Linda Ronstadt as heard on animated classic An American Tail
"Yah Mo Be There," a duet with Michael McDonald
"Just Once," arguably James' most recognizable song
And last but not least, "One Hundred Ways," the song that began James' career
Photos from @kennylattimore @yvettenicolebrown