The iconic R&B/Soul singer, Luther Vandross, who died in 2005 has finally received recognition of his many great works by receiving a posthumous Hollywood Walk of Fame star on June 3 according to West Side Today.
The Hollywood star, located at 1717 Vine St. in Los Angeles, Ca, is in honor of Vandross' career achievements and body of music that Urban AC, Classic and "Oldies but Goodies," radio stations world wide still play on air to this day. Luther, as he was more commonly known, "received 31 Grammy nominations, winning eight times, and who had eight rhythm-and-blues No. 1 albums and seven No. 1 singles," reported West Side Today.
Among those hits was his 1981 solo debut “Never Too Much,” his song "Here and Now," "Power of Love," and his 2004 Song of the Year, "Dance With My Father," just to name a few. Luther released 11 consecutive platinum or double platinum albums over the span of his career. He made feature appearances on albums of others such as Diana Ross, Chaka Khan, and, Donna Summer and collaborated with artist such as Janet Jackson and Beyonce.
Variety noted that Vandross' rise and popularity came at a time when R&B was suffering from an acute dearth of male stars, such as Marvin Gaye, Al Green and Stevie Wonder, but Luther's stepped in with his music to fill the void. What made Luther stand out in his sound and his choice of music? According to him, it was because instead of listening to male R&B singers, he was listening to the women sing.
“I love Stevie Wonder and I love Teddy Pendergrass and I love Donny Hathaway and Tony Bennett for that matter,” Vandross said in a 1982 interview, “but they were not the ones to arouse my musical libido. It was those nights with the earphones listening to Aretha (Franklin) sing ‘Ain’t No Way’ and listening to Dionne Warwick sing ‘People’ and listening to Diana Ross sing ‘Reflections.’ It was those nights that just knocked me down. I emulated these people. And as a result of having a lot of female singers as my idols, my sensitivity level is much different than a lot of other guys singing.” - Variety
Whatever or whomever the influence was behind the legend Luther Vandross, what matters and still remains true is the fact that he was great at what he did. As an overall musician he contributed so much to R&B and is much deserving of his Hollywood Walk of Fame Star.