Voice Masters

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An R&B vocal group from Detroit, Michigan, USA. The members were lead Ty Hunter, Lamont Dozier (b. 16 June 1941, Detroit, USA), David Ruffin (b. 18 January 1941, Meridian, Mississippi, USA, d. 1 June…
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An R&B vocal group from Detroit, Michigan, USA. The members were lead Ty Hunter, Lamont Dozier (b. 16 June 1941, Detroit, USA), David Ruffin (b. 18 January 1941, Meridian, Mississippi, USA, d. 1 June 1991), Walter Gaines and Crathman Spencer. The group was representative of the transitional era from doo-wop to the soul sounds of the Motown Records label. By the time of their formation in 1959, the Voice Masters were almost all veterans of the Detroit doo-wop scene, Hunter and Dozier having been in the Romeos and Spencer and Gaines having been in the Five Jets. The Voice Masters first recorded for the Anna label, owned by Berry Gordy’s sister, Anna Gordy. Only one of their four releases for the label during 1959/60 was heard outside the confines of Detroit, ‘Everything About You’ (number 18 R&B) in 1960. In an attempt by Anna to promote Hunter as a solo artist, the record was also released under Hunter’s name alone. Hunter went on to record for Check-mate, recording the gorgeous ‘Memories’ in 1961 and having a hit with ‘Lonely Baby (number 22 R&B) in 1962, both with backing from the Voice Masters. He moved to Chess Records in 1963 but was not able to sustain any success. Spencer, Gaines and Hunter all eventually became a part of the late 60s Motown group the Originals. Hunter died in 1981. Ruffin went on to join the Temptations, and later developed a solo recording career.