In 1987, Big Ship Captain Freddie McGregor recorded a cover version of the Main Ingredient’s million selling R&B classic ‘Just Don’t Wanna Be Lonely,’ that captured the symbiotic relationship that existed between reggae and R&B. The song, which was produced by Donovan Germain with Robbie Lyn on keyboards and Dean Frazer on saxophone reached #9 on the charts in the UK and is still popular today. Prior to McGregor’s reggae cover, American R&B group Blue Magic, a popular Philadelphia soul group did an impressive 7-minute rendition of ‘Just Don’t Want To Be Lonely’ in 1974 that has also withstood the test of time.
To reignite the passion that Jamaicans in the Diaspora have always had for R&B, Wembley Athletic Club in association with Richie Bar of Jamekya Rum Bar LLC have put together an event to enchant audiences, young and old on Saturday, April 4 at Wembley Athletic Club in the Bronx, New York. The event billed the ‘Sounds of Philadelphia – a night of love & romance’ will feature R&B singer Stuart Morgan, former lead vocalist of Blue Magic.
Aside from ‘Just Don’t Wanna Be Lonely,’ Blue Magic enjoyed success with their 1973 release ‘Spell,’ which was a Billboard R&B hit, charting at #30. Their second release, the uptempo ‘Look Me Up,’ peaked at #36, staying an impressive 11 weeks on the R&B chart. Their next single, ‘Stop to Start’ garnered even bigger success, reaching #14 on the Billboard R&B chart and #74 on the pop chart.
Their follow up hit ‘Sideshow,’ became their first Billboard US Top 10 R&B hit, climbing to #8 on the Billboard Hot 100. It also topped the R&B chart selling over one million copies, and was awarded a gold disc by the RIAA in 1974. The disc also included ballads ‘What’s Come Over Me,’ ‘Just Don’t Want To Be Lonely,’ ‘Tear It Down’ and the uptempo ‘Welcome to the Club.’ Other releases include ‘Three Ring Circus,’ which reached #36 in the pop chart and #5 on the R&B chart. The group was inducted into the Doo Wop Hall of Fame in 1999.