Gil Saunders

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Philadelphia native Gil Saunders grew up singing in the church at an early age. He patterned his style after David Ruffin of The Temptations and Marvin Junior of The Dells. Encouraged by family and friends, Saunders pursued a career in music. He formed his first group as a teenager which eventually merged into the popular neighborhood act called New Day. During a live performance Saunders caught the attention of Philadelphia singer, songwriter and producer Harold Melvin. Following a tour of England, Harold Melvin recruited Gil Saunders to replace then lead singer David Ebo in his group Harold Melvin & The Blue Notes.[1]

Gil Saunders joined the legendary Sound of Philadelphia recording act Harold Melvin and the Blue Notes as lead singer in 1982. They toured extensively overseas with acts like Billy Paul, and The Three Degrees. During a London concert tour Harold Melvin dedicated the single "If You Don't Know Me By Now" to Pop group Simply Red. It was at this performance that Gil Saunders was introduced as the new lead singer of Harold Melvin & Blue Notes. In 1984 Gil Saunders sang lead on the international Dance Music Hit "Today's Your Lucky Day" from the Harold Melvin & The Blue Notes album Talk It Up (Tell Everybody).[2]

The album garnered three Billboard R&B chart hits including "Today's Your Lucky Day," "Don't Give Me Up," and "I Really Love You." Saunders also co-lead with Harold on the track "What We Both Need (Is Love)" which was popular on local Philadelphia radio station WDAS-FM in Philadelphia.

The Talk It Up (Tell Everybody) album was recorded at Alpha International Studios in Philadelphia. The vocal lineup included Saunders with Harold Melvin, Bill Spratley, Dwight "Blackey" Johnson, and Rufus Thorne. The video for "Today's Your Lucky Day" which also featured female vocalist Nikko, was filmed at a transformed club in South Philadelphia designed to look like a Las Vegas-style Casino.[3]

Saunders recorded and toured with Harold Melvin and the Blue Notes for ten years before pursuing a solo career. His legendary performances with the group are documented on a 1986 P.B.S. television special.

Presently Saunders is in the studio recording a new solo album. His most recent original recordings include the singles "I Beg You to Stay," "Christmas," "In the Heat," "Let's Turn In," "In My Wildest Dreams," and "Yes We Can."

Discography[edit]

Albums[edit]

  • 1984: Talk It Up (Tell Everybody) (Philly World)

Singles[edit]

with Harold Melvin & The Blue Notes

  • 1984: Don't Give Me Up
  • 1984: Today's Your Lucky Day
  • 1984: I Really Love You"

Gil Saunders Solo Singles

  • 2007: I Beg You To Stay (Heartfelt/Independent)
  • 2007: Christmas (Heartfelt/Independent)
  • 2008: "In the Heat", "Let's Turn In"," In My Wildest Dreams", etc.
  • 2009: "Yes We Can"

References[edit]

External links[edit]