Album:The Box Set Series
Of course The O'Jays were one of the most popular R&B groups of the 70s. And though their last top ten pop hit was in 1978, they continued to score on the R&B charts in the 80s. Lovin' You topped the R&B chart in 1987. In their prime in the 70s. The O'Jays were Eddie Levert, Walter Williams and William Powell. Powell was diagnosed with cancer and he died in 1977. He was replaced by Sammy Strain of Little Anthony & The Imperials. Their final top ten pop hit was Use Ta Be My Girl in 1978. But The O'Jays continued to record with long time producers Kenny Gamble and Leon Huff at their label Philadelphia International. The label simply wasn't as successful in the 80s due to changing musical tastes. At some point in the 80s, Gamble and Huff moved Philadelphia International distribution from Columbia to Capitol/EMI. EMI wanted to show how much they wanted the label. So they spent more money on promotion. The 1987 album Let Me Touch You was The O'Jays most successful album since the 70s. The single Lovin' You topped the R&B Singles chart. It was at this point that Gamble and Huff closed Philadelphia International and The O'Jays signed directly with Capitol/EMI. The 1989 album Serious was the first O'Jays album since the 60s that wasn't produced by Gamble and Huff. Levert and Williams produced much of the album. The #1 R&B hit Have You Had Your Love Today? was produced by Eddie Levert's son Gerald Levert and partner Marc Gordon. And that's how things went until The O'Jays left EMI in 1993. This 2014 Sony Legacy budget 4CD box set is the only comp available that covers both Columbia and EMI recordings. Of course The O'Jays are still touring but their most recent CD was a Christmas album in 2010. They were inducted into The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2005. Here's The O'Jays performing Lovin' You on The Late Show 1987.