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Reported by Kacie Whaley
“If You Think You’re Lonely Now” singer Bobby Womack, died on Friday at the age of 70. A representative of Womack’s label, XL Recordings, confirmed news of the legend’s death to Rolling Stone, but the cause of death has yet to be confirmed.
Womack began his music career as a member of Curtis Womack and the Womack Brothers, a group consisting of him, his brother Curtis, and three other siblings. The group was signed to Sam Cooke’s record label, SAR Records, in 1960. In addition to Womack’s group releasing gospel singles, he also worked as a guitarist for Cooke.
The Womack group changed their name to The Valentinos and began recording secular music. They had reasonable success with their song, “It’s All Over Now.”
After Cooke’s death, SAR Records folded, and Curtis Womack and the Womack Brothers disbanded. Three months after Cooke’s death in 1964, Womack married Cooke’s widow, Barbara Campbell.
Womack released his first solo album in 1968, Fly Me to the Moon, which landed him his first major hit, “California Dreamin’.”
His third album, Communication, gave Womack his first Billboard Hot 100 top 40 hit, “That’s the Way I Feel About Cha” in the spring of 1972.
In 1973, Womack has another top 40 hit with “Nobody Wants You When You’re Down and Out,” off of his album Facts of Life.
Womack’s most successful single to date is the 1974 hit “Lookin’ For a Love.” The song peaked at number 10 on Billboard Hot 100 and number one on the R&B charts.
Throughout Womack’s legendary career, he collaborated with a long roster of notable artists, including Patti LaBelle, Aretha Franklin, Sly and the Family Stone, Teena Marie, and Mos Def. According to Rolling Stone, he was working on a new album at the time of his death that would include contributions by Stevie Wonder, Snoop Dogg, and Rod Stewart.
“My very first thought was — I wish I could call Sam Cooke and share this moment with him,” said Womack when he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2009. “This is just about as exciting to me as being able to see Barack Obama become the first black President of the United States of America! It proves that, if you’re blessed to be able to wait on what’s important to you, a lot of things will change in life.”