R&B: Gene Chandler

Gene Chandler, born Eugene Dixon, is an African American soul artist who is known for his #1 Billboard Hot 100 chart song hit record named “Duke of Earl” (1962). This song was recorded by the Dukays, which was his doo-wop group, but was released as a solo record by Vee Jay Records.”Duke of Earl” was played in the 1988 film, Hairspray. Gene Chandler was the lead singer of the Dukays but left the group, as Vee Jay records were not interested in the group as a whole. The song sold over a million copies in just a month’s time. He later became known as the “Duke of Earl”.

Most of Gene Chandler’s music was written by Curtis Mayfield, and produced by Carl Davis. Mostly all of the songs they did together was Top 5 R&B hits. His career started to slow down when Curtis decided not to write music for him anymore.  Gene was still able to make a couple of hit records on his own in the 1970’s era like “Groovy Situation.” His last successes were the R&B hits “Get Down” (1978) and “Does She Have a Friend?” (1980). Gene Chandler continues to perform around the United States and his music is still played across the globe. Gene Chandler was a big contributor to the R&B industry and will forever be known as the “The Duke of Earl”.

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