George McCrae

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George McCrae
McCrae at the 2015 Miami International Film Festival
Background information
Birth nameGeorge Warren McCrae, Jr.
Born (1944-10-19) October 19, 1944 (age 77)
West Palm Beach, Florida, U.S.
GenresSoul, disco, funk
Occupation(s)Singer
InstrumentsVocals
Years active1963–present
LabelsAlston, TK, RCA, Jayboy, President
Associated actsGwen McCrae
KC and the Sunshine Band
WebsiteGeorgemccrae.com

George Warren McCrae, Jr. (born October 19, 1944)[1] is an American soul and disco singer, most famous for his 1974 hit "Rock Your Baby".

Biography and career[edit]

McCrae was the second of nine children, born in West Palm Beach, Florida.[1] He formed his own singing group, the Jivin' Jets, before joining the United States Navy in 1963.[2] He married Gwen McCrae (née Mosley) in 1963.[1] Four years later, he re-formed the group, with his wife Gwen joining the line-up, but soon afterwards they decided to work as a duo, recording for Henry Stone's Alston record label. Gwen then won a solo contract, with George acting as her manager as well as doing some singing on sessions and in clubs in Palm Beach.[3][4]

He was about to return to college to study law enforcement, when Richard Finch and Harry Wayne Casey of KC and the Sunshine Band invited him to sing the lyrics for a song that they had recorded for the band, but could not reach the high notes that were required for the song. The original intention was that Gwen, his wife, should record it, but she was late for the session and George recorded alone.[3][4] It suited his high-pitched voice to the extent that the song, "Rock Your Baby", became one of the first hits of the disco era in 1974, selling an estimated eleven million copies worldwide,[5] topping the charts in the U.S. and the UK. The song was so successful that Rolling Stone magazine voted it the No. 1 song of the year in 1974.[2] McCrae received a Grammy Award nomination for Best Male R&B Vocalist the following year.

Two further single releases, "I Can't Leave You Alone" and "It's Been So Long" also reached the UK Singles Chart Top 10.[6] He recorded several further albums for TK, including George McCrae (1975) and Diamond Touch (1976),[7] and also continued to record with, and manage, his wife until their divorce in 1976.[4] They had two daughters together, Sophia and Leah.[8][9]

While he continued to record albums including We Did It! and his second self-titled album George McCrae (both 1978), his commercial popularity slipped as the decade progressed.[1] He married a second time, moved to Canada, and entered a period of semi-retirement, leaving TK at the end of the 1970s.[4] With his second wife, he had another daughter, Jennifer McCray.[10]

He returned with the album One Step Closer to Love in 1984, the title track from which entered the charts in the United Kingdom, Canada and the Netherlands. In 1988, he had a daughter, Marcella, with his then-girlfriend, Rosanna Molignini.[11][12] He moved to the village Munstergeleen in the Netherlands and remarried again, to Dutch model Yvonne Bergsma, in 1989.[13] They have a son, Shaka.[9]

His later albums found some success in Europe, and he continued to perform regularly there. By the 2000s, he shared his time between homes in Florida, Aruba, and the Netherlands. In 2016 George McCrae released a new concept album called LOVE that was produced by the Dutch producer / composer Roger Heijster. The album was recorded without sequencing using only vintage instruments. Leah and Sophia McCrae, George's two daughters from his first marriage to Gwen McCrae, provide the backing vocals for this album. The album was album of the week in Germany and the single "Sexy Woman" was #1 in Mallorca. George keeps on performing live and in December 2017 George performed at the BBC Hootenanny show with Jools Holland.[4][7]

Discography[edit]

Albums[edit]

Year Album Peak chart positions
US
[14]
US R&B
[14]
AUS
[15]
UK
[6]
1974 Rock Your Baby 38 7 13 26
1975 George McCrae 152 24 54
Together
(with Gwen McCrae)
33
1976 Diamond Touch
1978 George McCrae
We Did It
1984 One Step Closer to Love
Own the Night[A]
1987 I Feel Love for You
1991 Diamond Collection
With All My Heart
1993 Golden Classics
Music Mirror
1995 Do Something
1996 Romance
2009 Time for a Change
2016 Love
"—" denotes releases that did not chart.

Singles[edit]

Year Single Peak chart positions Certifications Album
US
[16]
US R&B
[14]
AUS
[15]
GER
[17]
AUT
[18]
SWI
[19]
NED
[20]
BEL
(FLA)

[21]
SWE
[22]
NOR
[23]
IRE UK
[24]
1974 "Rock Your Baby" 1 1 2 1 1 1 1 1 1 3 1 Rock Your Baby
"I Can't Leave You Alone" 50 10 92 3 11 4 3 9
"You Can Have It All" 23
1975 "I Get Lifted" 37 8
"Look at You" 95 31
"Sing a Happy Song" 13 27 38 George McCrae
"It's Been So Long" 27 4 4
"I Ain't Lyin'" 31 35 12
1976 "Honey I" 65 18 20 33
"Love in Motion" Diamond Touch
1977 "I'm Gonna Stay with My Baby Tonight"
"Kiss Me the Way I Like It" 110 57 George McCrae (II)
1978 "Let's Dance" 93
"(You've Got) My Love, My Life, My Soul" We Did It!
"I Want You Around Me" 91
1979 "Don't You Feel My Love"
1984 "One Step Closer (To Love)" 19 57 One Step Closer To Love
"Listen to Your Heart"
"Never Too Late" (NED only)
"Own the Night" Own the Night
1985 "Let's Dance / Never Forgot Your Eyes" (UK only) singles only
1986 "Rock Your Baby (Frankfurt Mix)" 92
1987 "That's Love" I Feel Love For You
"Girls Don't Lie" (UK only)
1988 "Nice and Slow" singles only
1989 "Rock Me All the Way" (NED only)
1990 "Breathless" (GER only) With All My Heart
1991 "Calling Love" (GER only)
"Take This Love of Mine" (GER only)
1994 "All Around the World (The Fresh Taste of Happiness)" single only
1995 "Do Something" (GER only) 82 Do Something
"Wanna Be Your Lover" (GER only)
1996 "Little Things Softly" (GER only)
2009 "It's Been So Long 2009" (GER only) Time for a Change
"—" denotes releases that did not chart or were not released.

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Re-released as Love's Been Good to Me

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d Dahl, Bill. "Artist Biography". AllMusic. Retrieved February 18, 2009.
  2. ^ a b "GEORGE McCRAE BIOGRAPHY". Archived from the original on December 27, 2008.
  3. ^ a b Larkin, Colin (May 27, 2011). The Encyclopedia of Popular Music - Colin Larkin. ISBN 9780857125958. Retrieved August 27, 2015.
  4. ^ a b c d e "Longing for... - George McCrae - World wide ambassador of Love". George McCrae. Retrieved August 27, 2015.
  5. ^ Murrells, Joseph (1978). The Book of Golden Discs (2nd ed.). London: Barrie and Jenkins Ltd. p. 347. ISBN 0-214-20512-6.
  6. ^ a b Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 338. ISBN 1-904994-10-5.
  7. ^ a b "Bio-George McCrae". Archived from the original on June 6, 2014.
  8. ^ "LEAH MCCRAE Bio | Broadjam.com". Broadjam. Retrieved July 13, 2019.
  9. ^ a b Arena, James (April 6, 2016). Legends of Disco: Forty Stars Discuss Their Careers. McFarland. ISBN 9781476624570.
  10. ^ "www.jennifermccray.com". www.jennifermccray.com. Retrieved July 13, 2019.
  11. ^ "George McCrae", Wikipedia (in Dutch), December 23, 2018, retrieved July 13, 2019
  12. ^ "Marcella MCcrae MuSiC 🎶 on Instagram: "No words needed DADDY ❤️ @mccraegeorge 🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥 Biggie , @snoopdogg nd also @50cent sampled Ur Musik .... Ur such a great Artist…"". Instagram. Archived from the original on December 24, 2021. Retrieved July 13, 2019.
  13. ^ "George McCrae | Marie's Meanderings". Retrieved July 13, 2019.
  14. ^ a b c "George McCrae | Awards". AllMusic. Archived from the original on December 3, 2012. Retrieved August 27, 2015.
  15. ^ a b Kent, David (1993). Australian Chart Book 1970–1992 (illustrated ed.). St Ives, N.S.W.: Australian Chart Book. p. 184. ISBN 0-646-11917-6.
  16. ^ "George McCrae - US Hot 100". Billboard. Retrieved February 8, 2015.
  17. ^ "George McCrae - German Chart". officialcharts.de. Archived from the original on February 8, 2015. Retrieved February 8, 2015.
  18. ^ "George McCrae - Austrian chart". austriancharts.at. Retrieved February 8, 2015.
  19. ^ "George McCrae - Swiss chart". hitparade.ch. Retrieved February 8, 2015.
  20. ^ "George McCrae - Dutch chart". dutchcharts.nl. February 8, 2015.
  21. ^ "George McCrae - Belgian Chart". ultratop.be. Retrieved February 8, 2015.
  22. ^ "George McCrae - Swedish chart". swedishcharts.com. Retrieved February 8, 2015.
  23. ^ "George McCrae - Norwegian chart". norwegiancharts.com. Retrieved February 8, 2015.
  24. ^ "George McCrae - UK Chart". The Official Charts Company. Retrieved February 8, 2015.
  25. ^ "George Mccrae - Rock Your Baby". bpi.co.uk. Retrieved January 18, 2022.
  26. ^ "George Mccrae - It's Been So Long". bpi.co.uk. Retrieved January 18, 2022.

External links[edit]