Dee Clark

Dee Clark

Real Name:
Delectus Clark
Profile:
He was born (1938) Delectus Clark in Blytheville, Arkansas, and moved to Chicago in 1941. His mother, Delecta, was a gospel singer and encouraged her son to pursue his love of music.

Clark made his first recording in 1952 as a member of the Hambone Kids, who scored an R&B hit with the song "Hambone." In 1953, he joined an R&B group called the Goldentones, who later became the Kool Gents and were discovered by Chicago radio DJ Herb Kent upon winning a talent competition. Kent got the Kool Gents signed to Vee-Jay record label, subsidiary Falcon/Abner. The group changed its name once again, to "The Delegates," and recorded for Falcon/Abner in 1956.

Clark embarked on a solo career in 1957 and over the next four years landed several moderate hits, two of which ("Just Keep It Up" and "Hey Little Girl") reached the top 20 on the Billboard Hot 100). His biggest single, "Raindrops," a power ballad augmented by heavy rain and thunder sound effects and Clark's swooping falsetto, hit in the spring of 1961 and became his biggest hit, soaring to number two on the pop chart (behind only Gary U.S. Bonds' "Quarter to Three") and number three on the R&B charts. The narrator of the song tries to convince himself that the tears he has cried since his love left him are raindrops, since "a man ain't supposed to cry." "Raindrops" sold over two million copies and remains a staple on oldies radio station playlists to this day, and has also been covered by several other artists in the years since, including David Cassidy, Tony Orlando and Dawn, and most notably Narvel Felts, who took the song to number 30 on the country chart in 1974. Clark himself recorded an updated version of "Raindrops" in 1973.

However, Clark's biggest hit was also his last. The follow-up to "Raindrops," "Don't Walk Away From Me," was a flop, and he made the pop charts in America only twice more, with "I'm Going Back to School" (1962) and "Crossfire Time" (1963). By the time "Crossfire Time" came out, Clark had moved from Vee-Jay to the Constellation label. Though he continued to record for Constellation through 1966, none of his records charted. Clark had a brief revival in 1975 when his song "Ride a Wild Horse" became a surprise top 30 hit in the UK Singles Chart, becoming his first chart hit in the UK since "Just Keep It Up."

Afterward, Clark performed mostly on the oldies circuit. By the late 1980s, he was in dire straits financially, living in a welfare hotel in Toccoa, Georgia. Despite suffering a stroke in 1987 that left him partially paralyzed and with a mild speech impediment, he continued to perform until his death on 7 December 1990, in Smyrna, Georgia, from a heart attack at the age of 52.
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Dee Clark Discography

Albums

ABLP 2002 Dee Clark How About That Abner ABLP 2002 US 1959 Sell This Version
LP 2000 Dee Clark Dee Clark (Album) Abner LP 2000 US 1959 Sell This Version
LP 1019 Dee Clark You're Lookin' Good Vee Jay Records LP 1019 US 1960 Sell This Version
VJLP 1037 Dee Clark Hold On....It's Dee Clark (Album) Vee Jay Records VJLP 1037 US 1961 Sell This Version
SR 1047 Dee Clark The Best Of Dee Clark (Album, Comp) Vee Jay Records SR 1047 US 1962 Sell This Version
SUS-5217 Dee Clark Wondering(LP, Album) Sunset Records SUS-5217 US 1968 Sell This Version

Singles & EPs

1005 Dee Clark Seven Nights / 24 Boy Friends (Single) Falcon (6) 1005 US 1957 Sell This Version
45-HL.8802 Dee Clark Nobody But You / When I Call On You (Single) London Records 45-HL.8802 UK 1958 Sell This Version
1009 Dee Clark And The Original Little Richard Band* Dee Clark And The Original Little Richard Band* - Oh Little Girl / Wondering (Single) Falcon (6) 1009 US 1958 Sell This Version
LS-563 Dee Clark Just Keep It Up (Single) Abner LS-563 Australia 1959 Sell This Version
1032 Dee Clark How About That / Blues Get Off My Shoulder (Single) Abner 1032 US 1959 Sell This Version
1037 Dee Clark At My Front Door / Cling A Ling (Single) Abner 1037 US 1959 Sell This Version
Abner 1029 Dee Clark Hey Little Girl / If It Wasn't For Love (Single) Abner Abner 1029 US 1959 Sell This Version
EP 1-900 Dee Clark Just Keep It Up(7", EP) Abner EP 1-900 US 1959 Sell This Version
JAR-501 Dee Clark You're Looking Good (Single) Vee Jay Records JAR-501 UK 1960 Sell This Version
17.008 Dee Clark Hey Little Girl(7", EP) Discophon 17.008 Spain 1960 Sell This Version
JAR-570 Dee Clark Raindrops / I Want To Love You (Single) Vee Jay Records JAR-570 UK 1961 Sell This Version
45-DB 4768 Dee Clark Don't Walk Away From Me (Single) Vee Jay Records 45-DB 4768 UK 1961 Sell This Version
VJ 372 Dee Clark Because I Love You / Your Friends (Single) Vee Jay Records VJ 372 US 1961 Sell This Version
VJ 487 Dee Clark I'm A Soldier Boy (Single) Vee Jay Records VJ 487 US 1962 Sell This Version
VJ 462 Dee Clark Nobody But You / I'm Going Back To School Vee Jay Records VJ 462 US 1962 Sell This Version
VJ 428 Dee Clark You Are Like The Wind / Drums In My Heart(7", Single) Vee Jay Records VJ 428 US 1962 Sell This Version
VJ 548 Dee Clark Walking My Dog / Nobody But Me (Single) Vee Jay Records VJ 548 US 1963 Sell This Version
C-108 Dee Clark Crossfire Time / I'm Going Home (Single) Constellation Records (2) C-108 US 1963 Sell This Version
VJ 532 Dee Clark How Is He Treating You / The Jones Brothers(7") Vee Jay Records VJ 532 US 1963 Sell This Version

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