|Birth name||Cecil Dale Womack|
|Also known as||Zekuuba Zekkariyas|
September 25, 1947|
Cleveland, Ohio, USA
|Died||February 1, 2013
|Genres||Gospel, R&B, soul|
|Occupations||Singer, songwriter, record producer|
|Instruments||Guitar, piano, vocals|
|Associated acts||The Valentinos
Womack & Womack
Cecil Dale Womack (September 25, 1947 – February 1, 2013) was an American R&B singer, songwriter and record producer. He was one of the musical Womack brothers, and had success both as a songwriter and recording artist, notably with his wife Linda as Womack and Womack. In later years he took the name Zekkariyas.
Cecil Womack was born in Cleveland, Ohio. He and his brothers Bobby, Harry, Friendly and Curtis, were a gospel group appearing on the gospel circuit in the mid 50s where they were seen by Sam Cooke of the Soul Stirrers. As Cooke's protégés they changed their name to The Valentinos and in 1961 began to sing and record for secular audiences. The Valentinos had hit records with "Lookin' for a Love" and "It's All Over Now", the latter being covered by The Rolling Stones and briefly recorded for Chess Records in Chicago before switching to the Jubilee label where Cecil contributing songs that included "Two Lovers History" and "Tired Of Being Nobody". The Valentinos called it a day in 1969.
As the 1960s progressed Cecil Womack secured a role away from performing as a songwriter and producer. As husband of former Motown star Mary Wells he was well placed to provide several R & B chart successes for Wells including "The Doctor", "Dig The Way I Feel" and "Never Give A Man The World" on which he backed his wife on vocals, all released on Jubilee Records. Womack's later songwriting credits include "Love TKO" a major hit for Teddy Pendergrass, "I Just Want To Satisfy You" for The O'Jays, "Love Symphony" for Patti LaBelle, and "New Day" for George Benson.
Womack & Womack
In 1983, Cecil and his wife Linda, who was Sam Cooke's daughter, began performing and recording together as Womack & Womack, and released a successful album, Love Wars on Elektra Records. The title track from the album was a no.14 hit in the UK, and the song "Baby I'm Scared Of You" was a minor hit on the Billboard R&B chart in the US. In 1988, their single "Teardrops", taken from their fourth album Conscience, became a major international hit reportedly selling more than 10 million copies worldwide. It reached no.3 in the UK, and no.1 in the Netherlands, Australia, and New Zealand, though it did not chart in the US.
After traveling to Nigeria, they discovered ancestral ties to the Zekkariyas tribe, and Cecil adopted the name Zekkariyas. In 1993 they released their final album with a major label, Transformed To The House Of Zekkariyas. They continued to write for other artists, including Ruby Turner and Randy Crawford, and released their final album, Circular Motion, in 2007.
Covers of Cecil Womack songs
His first wife Mary Wells recorded the Valentinos "Two Lovers' History" in 1968. The Womack & Womack song "Love Wars" was covered by The Beautiful Southfor the 1990 compilation Rubáiyát.Eric Clapton, Elton John, K.D. Lang and The Sugababes are among many artists who recorded "Lead Me On". His best known song "Love T.K.O." has been recorded by many artists including Boz Scaggs, Teddy Pendergrass, Bette Midler and Michael McDonald. "Teardrops" has been covered by Joss Stone. Other artists to record songs written by Cecil Womack include: Bonnie Raitt ("Good Man, Good Woman"), George Benson ("New Day"), Ruby Turner "(Hurting Inside"), The Dramatics, The Dells, Patti Labelle, and brother Bobby Womack for whom he co-wrote or wrote a number of hit songs that include "(If You Want My Love) Put Something Down On It", "I Wish I Had Someone To Go Home To" and "I'm So Proud".
Cecil became the second husband of Motown singer Mary Wells in 1967; they divorced in 1977. He also had a son born in 1966 from a prior relationship. Cecil married Linda Cooke, the daughter of Sam Cooke. This created an interesting family tree because Cecil's brother Bobby Womack had married Sam Cooke's widow Barbara Campbell in 1965, after Cooke's death.
Cecil and Linda had seven children together, and had homes in Africa and Thailand. After 1994 Cecil was known professionally and personally by the name Zekkariyas. Cecil spent his final years traveling the world with his wife and children, and using his time to explore his African heritage, spirituality and knowledge of the continent as well as making music. He died of unknown causes in South Africa on February 1, 2013.
- Womack and Womack Biography
- Joel Whitburn, Top R&B/Hip-Hop Singles, 1942-2004, Billboard Chart Data , (2004)
- Womack and Womack at Soulwalking.co.uk. Retrieved 3 February 2013
- Betts, Graham (2004). Complete UK Hit Singles 1952-2004 (1st ed.). London: Collins. p. 92. ISBN 0-00-717931-6.
- The World's Music Chart: Songs from the year 1988. Retrieved 4 February 2013
- Biography by William Ruhlmann at Allmusic.com. Retrieved 3 February 2013
- Circular Motion at Allmusic.com. Retrieved 3 February 2013
- Mary Wells