He moved to New York City in 1968, and in addition to continuing his education at the Manhattan School of Music started to perform as a tenor with the New York Philharmonic. He also began teaching music at a Harlem church upon his arrival in New York. This church group eventually turned into a popular city choir and then eventually the internationally renowned Boys Choir of Harlem.
In 1999 he was awarded the 5th Annual Heinz Award in the Arts and Humanities.
He died on March 23, 2007 in a New York City hospital. He had reportedly suffered a stroke months earlier.