Damon Harris (Born Otis Harris, Jr.)
July 17, 1950 – February 18, 2013
Damon Harris was a 3-time Grammy Award winning member of the legendary Motown group, the Temptations. At just 20 years old, Harris was the youngest member of the outfit when he took Eddie Kendrick’s place in 1971. He had previously sang in a popular Temptations cover band called the Young Tempts who actually scored a minor hit with their version of “I’ve Been Good to You.” It was under the moniker, the Young Vandals however, after Motown filed an injunction over their name. During his four years with the Temptations, Harris sang on such hits as “Papa Was A Rollin’ Stone,” “Masterpiece,” and “Superstar (Remember How You Got Where You Are),” among others. He also sang lead on “Love Woke Me Up This Morning” from 1972’s All Directions. After leaving the Temptations in 1975, Harris reformed the Young Tempts, but this time as Impact, who charted with a handful of R&B and disco records through the latter part of the ’70s. In 1978, he released Silk, the only album under his own name. Harris retired from music in order to go to college during the ’80s, but by the ’90s he was back fronting a Temptations revival group and briefly touring with a reunited incarnation of the actual group. During the late ’90s, Harris learned he was suffering from prostate cancer so turned his life’s focus on the fight against the disease by forming The Damon Harris Cancer Foundation. Damon Harris ultimately died from the cancer on February 19, 2013. He was 62. Fellow Temptations Paul Williams, David Ruffin, Ali-Ollie Woodson, and Melvin Franklin have passed away as well.
Thanks to Craig Rosen at Number 1 Albums for the assist.