Arthur "T-Boy" Ross

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Arthur Ross (February 28, 1949 – June, 1996)[1] was an American singer and songwriter most notable for his collaborations with Leon Ware. He was the younger brother of legendary entertainer Diana Ross.

Biography[edit]

Born in Detroit, Michigan, Ross hung around rougher sections of Detroit while his elder sister went on to fame as lead singer of The Supremes in the 1960s and later solo fame in the 1970s. Shortly after Diana Ross had established herself on her own, she recruited him to Motown as an appointed songwriter in 1972. Ross hooked up with songwriter Leon Ware and together the duo wrote hits for acts such as Michael Jackson, The Miracles and Marvin Gaye. Among the hits were the Top 20 "I Wanna Be Where You Are" and "I Want You".

T-Boy had a falling out with Ware during recording sessions for Marvin Gaye's I Want You album. He quit the project and, set on becoming a singer, released his first album for Motown Records in 1979, Changes. Despite help from artists such as Joe Sample, it sold only 12,000 copies.[2] Fed up with the business, Ross retired from music in the early 1980s, returning to the Motor City where he lived in Detroit seclusion away from family members.

During the weekend of June 22–23, 1996,[2] police found the decaying bodies of Ross and his wife Patricia Ann Robinson in a basement inside another person's dilapidated home in Oak Park, Michigan, a suburb bordering Detroit known for its homicides and violent crime.[2] The two of them were reportedly bound and gagged and died of suffocation. It was estimated that the bodies had been there for several days to a week. The date of the couple's deaths was estimated to be May 30, 1996.[1][1] Ross was 47 years old and his wife was 54.[1][1][2] Oddly, T-Boy was not reported missing by his family. He had been scheduled to appear in a downtown Detroit courtroom on June 26, 1996, at a hearing on three charges of possessing a controlled substance.[2]

His work with Ware continues to be covered. "I Want You" has been covered by the late Robert Palmer, Madonna, Michael McDonald, and even Diana Ross herself on her 2007 album I Love You.

His sole rare album on Motown, Changes, was finally released on CD in August 2012. The album opens with his most covered song, "I Want You" and closes with another self-penned song "To the Baby", which he wrote for big sister Diana, a long-delayed tribute to her first two daughters.

It is clear that Arthur "T-Boy" Ross was another talented member of the Ross family that also included his oldest sister, Barbara, a doctor along with his superstar sister, Diana Ross.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e "Michigan Deaths, 1971-1996 [database on-line]". United States: The Generations Network. 1998. Archived from the original on 31 October 2009. Retrieved 2009-11-01. 
  2. ^ a b c d e "Brother of Diana Ross and his wife found slain", Associated Press article dated June 27, 1996, The Virginian-Pilot — Ledger-Star, Norfolk, VA, USA.