Tommy Edwards

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For the American basketball announcer, see Tommy Edwards (announcer). For the American illustrator, see Tommy Lee Edwards.
Tommy Edwards
Birth name Thomas J. Edwards[1]
Born (1922-02-17)February 17, 1922
Richmond, Virginia, US
Died October 22, 1969(1969-10-22) (aged 47)
Henrico County, Virginia
Genres R&B, jazz, pop
Occupation(s) Singer, songwriter
Years active 1946–69
Labels MGM

Tommy Edwards (February 17, 1922 – October 22, 1969)[2] was a singer and songwriter. His biggest-selling record was with the multi-million-selling song "It's All in the Game."[1]

Career[edit]

Born Thomas Edwards in Richmond, Virginia, Edwards was an R&B singer most remembered for his 1958, [[Hot 100 number-one hits of 1958 NJ By

TV TX (United States)|Billboard No. 1]], "It's All in the Game."  He sang his hit song on The Ed Sullivan Show, on September 14, 1958. The song was composed by then-future U.S. Vice-President Charles G. Dawes in 1912 as "Melody in A Major" with lyrics written in 1951 by Carl Sigman. Edwards originally recorded and charted the song in 1951, but it only climbed to #18 on the chart. The better-known 1958 version was on the same record label (MGM) and was backed by the same orchestra leader (Leroy Holmes), but with a different arrangement more suited to the rock and roll-influenced style of the time. As well as topping the U.S. Billboard Hot 100, the song also got to number one on the R&B chart and the UK Singles Chart.[3] The single sold over 3.5 million copies globally, earning gold disc status.[3] The gold disc was presented in November 1958.[4] He had a more modest hit with the follow-up, "Love Is All We Need," which climbed to #15 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100.

"That Chick's Too Young to Fry", written by Edwards, was a sizable hit for Louis Jordan.[5] Edwards began recording for the Top label in 1949.[2] When MGM heard his demo of it they gave him a recording contract.[3]

Although Edwards recorded a number of other songs, none came close to achieving the same level of success, though several of his songs later became hits for other artists (such as "A Fool Such As I" by Elvis Presley, "It's All in the Game" by Cliff Richard and The Four Tops (Eddie Holman's version of it was the B-side of his hit "Hey There Lonely Girl"), "Please Love Me Forever" by Cathy Jean and the Roommates (1961) and by Bobby Vinton (1967), and "Morning Side of the Mountain" recorded by Donny and Marie Osmond).

He died after suffering a brain aneurysm in Henrico County, Virginia, at the age of 47.[3] The liner notes of his 1994 Eric Records release The Complete Hits of Tommy Edwards claim his death was caused by alcoholism. While the two may be related, there is no confirmation of this.

Edwards received a Virginia Highway Marker in 2008, erected near Pemberton Elementary School, off Quioccasin Road, in Henrico County. In July 2008, Richmond mayor L. Douglas Wilder signed a proclamation declaring October 15, 2008 "Tommy Edwards Day."

In September 2012, Cherry Red Records label Shout issued a 2-CD collection of Edwards's work, entitled It's All in the Game (The MGM Recordings 1958–1960), which comprised his first four MGM albums and singles from the two years following that single's huge success.

Partial discography[edit]

Singles[edit]

Year Single Chart positions Album
US U.S.
R&B
UK[6]
1951 "Once There Lived A Fool"
b/w "A Friend of Johnny's"
Non-album tracks
"Gypsy Heart"
b/w "Operetta"
"I'll Never Know Why"
b/w "A Beggar in Love"
"The Morning Side of the Mountain"
b/w "F'r Instance"
24
"Christmas Is For Children"
b/w "Kris Kringle"
"It's All in the Game" / 18
"All Over Again" 10
1952 "Please, Mr. Sun"
b/w "I May Live With You"
22
"Forgive Me"
b/w "The Bridge"
"My Girl"
b/w "Piano, Bass and Drums"
"Easy To Say"
b/w "The Greatest Sinner of Them All"
"You Win Again"
b/w "Sinner and Saint" (Non-album track)
13 It's All in the Game
1953 "Now and Then, There's A Fool Such As I"
b/w "I Can't Love Another" (Non-album track)
24
"Au Revoir"
b/w "I Lived When I Met You"
Non-album tracks
"Take These Chains From My Heart"
b/w "Paging Mr. Jackson"
"Baby, Baby, Baby"
b/w "Lover's Waltz"
26
"So Little Time"
b/w "Blue Bird"
"Every Day Is Christmas"
b/w "It's Christmas Once Again"
1954 "Secret Love"
b/w "That's All" (from It's All in the Game)
28
"There Was A Time"
b/w "Wall of Ice" (from Tommy Edwards)
"The Joker (In The Card Game of Life)"
b/w "Within My Heart"
"Linger in My Arms"
b/w "If You Would Love Me Again"
Tommy Edwards
"You Walk By"
b/w "I Have That Kind of Heart"
1955 "Serenade to a Fool"
b/w "It Could Have Been Me"
Non-album tracks
"Welcome to mMy Heart"
b/w "Spring Never Came Around This Year" (Non-album track)
Tommy Edwards
"Teardrop on a Rose"
b/w "To Those Who Wait"
Non-album tracks
"Baby, Let Me Take You Dreaming"
b/w "My Sweetheart" (Non-album track)
Tommy Edwards
1956 "Love Is A Child"
b/w "There Must Be A Way To Your Heart" (Non-album track)
"The Day That I Lost You"
b/w "My Ship" (from Tommy Edwards)
Non-album track
1957 "We're Not Children Anymore"
b/w "Any Place, Any Time" (Non-album track)
Tommy Edwards
1958 "It's All in the Game" (new version) / 1 1 1 It's All in the Game
"Please Love Me Forever" 61
"Love Is All We Need"
b/w "Mr. Music Man"
15
1959 "Please, Mr. Sun" (new version) / 11 18
"The Morning Side of the Mountain" (new version) 27
"My Melancholy Baby" / 26 27 29 For Young Lovers
"It's Only The Good Times" 86
"I've Been There" / 53 Tommy Edwards' Greatest Hits
"I Looked at Heaven" 100 For Lovers Only
"(New In) The Ways of Love" / 47 Tommy Edwards' Greatest Hits
"Honestly and Truly" 65 Non-album track
1960 "Don't Fence Me In"
b/w "I'm Building Castles Again" (from You Started Me Dreaming)
45 Tommy Edwards' Greatest Hits
"I Really Don't Want To Know"
b/w "Unloved"
18
"It's Not The End of Everything"
b/w "Blue Heartaches"
78
"Suzie Wong"
b/w "As You Desire Me"
Stardust
1961 "Vaya Con Dios"
b/w "One and Twenty"
"The Golden Chain"
b/w "That's The Way With Love"
Non-album tracks
"I'm So Lonesome I Could Cry"
b/w "My Heart Would Know"
Tommy Edwards Sings Golden Country Hits
1962 "I'll Cry You Out of My Heart"
b/w "Tables Are Turning" (Non-album track)
Stardust
"Please Don't Tell Me"
b/w "Tonight I Won't Be There"
Non-album tracks
1963 "May I"
b/w "Sometimes You Win, Sometimes You Lose"
"Country Boy"
b/w "Love Is Best of All"
1964 "Leftover Dreams"
b/w "9 Chances Out of 10"
1965 "Take These Chains From My Heart"
b/w "You Win Again"
The Very Best of Tommy Edwards
1966 "I Must Be Doing Something Wrong"
b/w "I Cried, I Cried"
Non-album tracks

Albums[edit]

  • It's All in the Game Tommy Edwards MGM E 3732
  • The Very Best of Tommy Edwards (1963, Cat. No. E/SE 4141)
  • Tommy Edwards in Hawaii (1960, Cat. No. E/SE 3838)
  • Step Out Singing (1960, Cat. No. SE 3822)
  • Tommy Edwards (Lion Records of Canada, Cat. No. L 70120)
  • For Young Lovers (1959, Cat. No. E/SE 3670)
  • Tommy Edwards' Greatest Hits (1961, Cat No. E/SE 3884)
  • Tommy Edwards Sings (Regent MG 6069)

Production notes[edit]

The recording "Honestly and Truly" is only heard on compact disc in mono, because the original stereo master tape was either lost or destroyed.

The recording "Take These Chains From My Heart" is heard on compact disc in re-channeled stereo because, as with the above song, the original stereo master was lost or destroyed.

These recordings were issued on the MGM record label unless otherwise noted.

"It's All in the Game" (1958 version) was produced by Harry Myerson. He is assumed to be the producer for all tracks from this point forward, although this cannot be confirmed.

The orchestra was conducted and the arrangements were made on all records by LeRoy Holmes.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Gunter, Donald W. "Thomas J. "Tommy" Edwards (1922–1969)". Encyclopedia Virginia/Library of Virginia. Retrieved 6 April 2015. 
  2. ^ a b "Biography by Ron Wynn". Allmusic.com. Retrieved January 7, 2008. 
  3. ^ a b c d Murrells, Joseph (1978). The Book of Golden Discs (2nd ed.). London: Barrie and Jenkins Ltd. p. 101. ISBN 0-214-20512-6. 
  4. ^ Tobler, John (1992). NME Rock 'N' Roll Years (1st ed.). London: Reed International Books Ltd. p. 60. CN 5585. 
  5. ^ Books.google.co.uk
  6. ^ Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 179. ISBN 1-904994-10-5. 

External links[edit]