The late great singer and songwriter,
John C. Whitehead passed away in Philadelphia, PA his home town on May
11, 2004. John was born in Philadelphia, the son of Mary E. Whitehead
and the late John W. Whitehead, a Christian minister. John was taken
from us tragically and without warning by a
senseless act of violence in the "City of Brotherly Love."
Known for his
many famous songs, John was predominantly a songwriter but was also a
singer par excellence. His inspirational hit song "Ain't No Stoppin' Us Now" which sold
over eight million records was sung with his long time music partner
Gene Mc Fadden. It raced to the top of the charts and John was
nominated for "Songwriter of the Year" and "Artist of the Year". "Ain't
No Stoppin' Us Now" has remained a classic ever since and has inspired
the masses to "Let Nothing Hold Us Back".
Other hit songs
for which John was well known included such R&B chart toppers as
"Backstabbers" by the O'Jays, "For the Love of Money", "Bad Luck",
"I'll Always Love My Mamma", "Wake Up
Everybody", sung by Teddy Pendergrass, "Where Are All My
Friends", "The More I Get"... and the list goes on.
had 37 gold and platinum albums in his music career and two Grammy
Nominations. His newest CD project entitled "Messages" was recently
completed and scheduled for release before his untimely death. John's
life was cut short by gun shots fired at someone else. Ironically, one
of the songs on John's MESSAGES CD, "Stand
Tall" commented on the violence in our inner cities:
"Look around and
you'll see the situation...
It's looking black, Drugs and guns have over run our city streets...
Tears us all apart,
Now it's time to renew this once great nation,
For our kids who's gonna one day be in need.
Don't you let it go too far...STAND TALL!"
song on the "Messages" album, "Let
Freedom Ring" rings out a message to the whole world:
"We've got no
time to hate...
it's time we set things straight...
We're one nation under God."
John was a
creative genius who with the stroke of the pen and lightning quick mind
could reach up and catch Divine inspiration from above, unscramble the
thought vibrations translating them into messages set to music - the
expression was, "People who make music together cannot be enemies as
long as the music lasts, so let the music play!"
from Atlantic City on PBS (Public Broadcasting Stations) show, "My
Music" featuring the many groups of the Sound of Philadelphia. John
also appeared not long ago on the Oprah Winfrey Show, prompting Oprah
to declare that ""Ain't No Stoppin' Us Now" was her all time favorite
song."John sang on the VH-1 Channel "McFadden and
John and Rita of
Israel were chosen to sing "Let Freedom Ring" at the 30th Anniversary
March on Washington organized by the Martin Luther King, Jr. committee
honoring the "I Have a Dream" speech at the Lincoln Memorial.
Freedom Ring" song music video was played live over C-SPAN at the April
2003 Rally for the Troops sponsored by the Citizens United Foundation
and thousands of Patriotic Americans cheered John and Rita's tribute to
John's warm and
upbeat personality, his tremendous sense of humor as well as his
dedication to his friends and his love of life and music makes him
stand out from all the rest. John's music is loved the whole world over
and while he is gone now, his music lives. The beat goes on!
President, Let Freedom Ring, Inc.