Teddy Pendergrass, also known as Teddy Bear, was known for his masculine, deep voice. The soul singer, who began his career as the drummer for ‘The Cadillacs’, became lead singer of ‘Harold Melvin and the Blue Notes’ before moving on to his solo career.
Enjoying solo success, Teddy was riding high in the 1970s and early 1980s. His “For Women Only” concerts were sold out and his songs flew up the charts. He could do no wrong until the fateful day in 1982, when he was involved in a serious car accident, which left him partially paralyzed. The circumstances of the accident caused rumor mills to fly into overdrive: his passenger was a transsexual nightclub performer.
After the accident, Teddy underwent physical therapy to learn to deal with his partially paralyzed body. “You feel worthless because all of a sudden you aren’t the way you once were,” he said of the time. “I cried a lot. I was angry.”
Two years after the accident he was back to business and released ‘Love Language’. He continued to make music, also making appearances in his wheelchair at times, until he announced his retirement in 2006.
Today we received news that Teddy Pendergrass has passed away. His son tells the media that Teddy had undergone colon cancer surgery eight months ago, and that he was having a “difficult recovery”.
“To all his fans who loved his music, thanks you,” his son said. “He will live on through his music.”
Teddy died in a suburban hospital in Philadelphia. He was 59 years old.Tags: cancer