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R. B. Greaves, Pop Singer, Dies at 68
New York Times ^ | October 2, 2012 | DANIEL E. SLOTNIK

Posted on 10/10/2012 3:37:02 PM PDT by nickcarraway

R. B. Greaves, an R&B singer whose 1969 hit “Take a Letter, Maria” reached No. 2 on the Billboard pop chart, died on Thursday in Los Angeles. He was 68.

His death was confirmed by his son, Shiloh Greaves.

“Take a Letter, Maria,” which Mr. Greaves wrote, is about a hard-working man who dictates a “Dear Jane” letter to his secretary after coming home to find his wife “in the arms of another man.”

He sings, more in acceptance than in anger: “So take a letter, Maria, address it to my wife/Say I won’t be coming home, gonna start a new life.”

Despite its theme of betrayal, the song remains upbeat and ends with the husband asking Maria out to dinner.

The song, which was recorded at the hitmaking Muscle Shoals studio in Alabama, went gold, selling more than a million copies.

Mr. Greaves was a nephew of the gospel and soul singer Sam Cooke, who was shot and killed by a Los Angeles motel manager in 1964.

(Excerpt) Read more at nytimes.com ...


TOPICS: Music/Entertainment
KEYWORDS: 1969; 70s; music; rbgreaves; samcooke; soul

1 posted on 10/10/2012 3:37:09 PM PDT by nickcarraway
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To: nickcarraway

I used to listen to that song


2 posted on 10/10/2012 3:41:56 PM PDT by funfan
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To: nickcarraway

Didn’t realize he was Sam Cooke’s nephew


3 posted on 10/10/2012 3:43:12 PM PDT by nuconvert ( Khomeini promised change too // Hail, Chairman O)
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To: nickcarraway

Never was a big fan of the song but it was a huge hit.Pretty young...68.


4 posted on 10/10/2012 3:46:03 PM PDT by Gay State Conservative (Ambassador Stevens Is Dead And The Chevy Volt Is Alive)
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To: nickcarraway

Can only imagine this song playing on a transistor radio.


5 posted on 10/10/2012 3:49:49 PM PDT by skeeter
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To: nickcarraway

Great AM Radio song...


6 posted on 10/10/2012 3:50:24 PM PDT by Shady (Hey, King Bozo Osmocote....you can't hide the truth anymore..)
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To: skeeter
Can only imagine this song playing on a transistor radio.

Back when that was nearly all there was, it sounded purty good. It was either that, or a static-laced AM car radio, LOL!

7 posted on 10/10/2012 3:54:45 PM PDT by abb ("What ISN'T in the news is often more important than what IS." Ed Biersmith, 1942 -)
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To: nickcarraway

RIP. I always thought part of those lyrics were “a Saturday knife”, instead of “start a new life.”


8 posted on 10/10/2012 3:54:52 PM PDT by fieldmarshaldj (Resist We Much)
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To: nickcarraway

Duane Allman was the session guitarist for that album...


9 posted on 10/10/2012 3:55:22 PM PDT by JohnLongIsland
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To: nickcarraway

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z9Y0x1jLkLg
Never watched him until now.


10 posted on 10/10/2012 3:57:36 PM PDT by SMGFan (SMGfan is not "Sub Machine Gun" fan)
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To: nickcarraway

“Take a death certificate, Maria (ba badaba ba ba)
Address it to my wife
Send a copy to my lawyer
Gotta start a new life...”


11 posted on 10/10/2012 4:03:31 PM PDT by OrangeHoof (Our economy won't heal until one particular black man is unemployed.)
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To: JohnLongIsland
Duane Allman was the session guitarist for that album...

I did not know that. Duane Allman, now there was a tragic death of a tremendously talented young musician.

12 posted on 10/10/2012 5:04:27 PM PDT by informavoracious (I am a Sedevacantist. I believe the chair is EMPTY.)
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To: nickcarraway

“Take a letter, Maria” always got a lot of airtime, even after the 60’s and up to now. I sure liked hearing it. RIP.


13 posted on 10/10/2012 5:27:32 PM PDT by TwelveOfTwenty (Ho, ho, hey, hey, I'm BUYcotting Chick-Fil-A)
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To: SMGFan

Notice the “Mission Impossible” flame-up at the end of the song....lol!


14 posted on 10/10/2012 6:51:58 PM PDT by Tainan (Cogito, ergo conservatus sum)
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To: nickcarraway

I used to hear that song.


15 posted on 10/10/2012 6:53:57 PM PDT by SamAdams76
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To: fieldmarshaldj

OMG, that is like a friend of mine who thought Creedance’s lyrics on Bad Moon Rising were “there’s a bathroom on the right.”


16 posted on 10/10/2012 8:39:37 PM PDT by West Texas Chuck (Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms. That should be a convenience store, not a Government Agency.)
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To: West Texas Chuck

Or Jimi Hendrix’s “’Scuse me while I kiss this guy”... ;-)


17 posted on 10/10/2012 9:26:37 PM PDT by fieldmarshaldj (Resist We Much)
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To: fieldmarshaldj

Or the Young Rascals’, “Life would be ecstasy, you and me, and Leslie.”


18 posted on 10/10/2012 9:30:24 PM PDT by dfwgator (I'm voting for Ryan and that other guy.)
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To: fieldmarshaldj

Eggzackly!

Stay safe FReeper.


19 posted on 10/10/2012 9:31:50 PM PDT by West Texas Chuck (Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms. That should be a convenience store, not a Government Agency.)
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To: nickcarraway; a fool in paradise; Slings and Arrows

Take a letter Maria
A dressing for my wife


20 posted on 10/10/2012 9:34:03 PM PDT by Revolting cat! (Bad things are wrong!)
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To: nickcarraway; a fool in paradise; Slings and Arrows

Take a letter, Maria
And dress up like my wife.


21 posted on 10/10/2012 9:34:57 PM PDT by Revolting cat! (Bad things are wrong!)
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To: nickcarraway

‘splains why he sounded just like Sam Cooke?

“He will be missed” wrote some thoughtless fool on Youtube. Oh, yeah? Like you wuz expecting his next hit record?


22 posted on 10/10/2012 9:37:49 PM PDT by Revolting cat! (Bad things are wrong!)
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To: dfwgator

Heh.. And I don’t even try deciphering what passes for music today. Argh.

Take care and g’night...


23 posted on 10/10/2012 9:41:47 PM PDT by fieldmarshaldj (Resist We Much)
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