Dennis Edwards, Temptations Lead Singer, Dies at 74

Singer was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1989

Dennis Edwards Temptations
Terry Wyatt/Getty Images

Dennis Edwards, the lead singer of The Temptations between 1968 and 1984, has died at the age of 74.

CBS News reported on Friday that the singer had died in Chicago, just one day before his 75th birthday.

Born in Alabama and raised in Detroit, Edwards rose to prominence after joining the Temptations as lead singer in 1968, replacing David Ruffin. His initial stint with the Temptations lasted until 1977, during which time they recorded hits “Cloud Nine” and “Papa Was a Rollin’ Stone,” which earned them Grammys in 1969 and 1973, respectively.

Edwards was fired from the group in 1977, only to return in 1980 when the group re-signed with Motown Records. He would go on to leave and rejoin the group several more times throughout the ’80s. In 1989, he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as part of the group.

His solo career included three albums and singles including “Don’t Look Any Further,” “(You’re My) Aphrodisiac” and “Coolin’ Out.” Edwards also toured and recorded as part of Ruffin/Kendricks/Edwards, the ’80s ensemble that featured other ex-Temptations members. In the ’90s, he continued touring, first as Dennis Edwards & The Temptations, before changing the group’s name to The Temptations Review Featuring Dennis Edwards after a legal dispute with original Temptations member Otis Williams.