70s Music

History of Eddie Holman

Eddie HolmanIntroduction

Eddie Holman (born in Norfolk, Virginia in 1946), is an American singer who performs in several genres such as R&B, soul, pop and gospel, and best known for the now-oldies music classic hit ballad “Hey There Lonely Girl” in 1970. When he was younger, he and his family moved from Virginia to New York, where he continued singing and playing guitar and piano at a local church and family gatherings. His mother, noticing his glossy tenor voice, encouraged him to take singing professionally and would support his every musical undertaking, even enrolling him at a music school in Harlem. By that time, he had already been performing at prestigious venues such as the Apollo Theater and even Carnegie Hall. Holman graduated with a degree in music at Cheyney State University (now Cheyney University of Pennsylvania) in Philadelphia, Pa. Part of the vibrant Philly soul scene, Holman eventually developed his signature vocal style. His first hit was “This Can’t Be True”, released in January 1966. He would score a couple of Top 20 R&B hits until he scored his biggest smash, “Hey There Lonely Girl” in 1969, selling two million copies and earning gold status. It was his only Top 10/Top 20/Top40 hit. He would cut other singles but none of them reached the level of success as “Hey There Lonely Girl” had. Now an ordained Baptist minister, Holman heads a record label as well as a music publishing firm. He still performs, albeit occasionally.

 

Early years

Well-remembered by his breakthrough hit “Hey There Lonely Girl” in during the early 70s music era, Eddie Holman was born on June 3, 1946 in Norfolk, Virginia. When he was two years old his family later moved in New York where he later spent his teenage years. While growing up, he developed his interest in music when he was introduced to guitar and piano by his mother. The ten-year-old Holman made his stage debut on the Amateur Night at the Apollo Theater where he showcased his smooth falsetto vocals. The appearance led him to many more opportunities which he earned performances on Broadway and even at the prestigious Carnegie Hall. To augment Holman’s musical capabilities, hi supportive mother enrolled him in Harlem’s Victoria School of Music. Years after, he had his first record in 1962.

 

Music career

Teenaged Holman and his family later relocated to Philadelphia where he attended Cheyney State University and graduated with music degree. It was also in Philadelphia where the town’s budding soul scene bloomed with Holman’s style. In 1965, he released his first hit with “This Can’t Be True” which peaked at #17 on the US R&B chart and followed by a string of hits such as “Am I a Loser From the Start” (1966), “I Love You” (1969), “Don’t Stop Now” (1970), and “Cathy Called” (1970). After he sang in some Philly-based groups, Holman issued “Hey There Lonely Girl” in 1969 which was his biggest hit, reaching #2 on the Billboard Hot 100 in early 1970. Holman’s “Hey There Lonely Girl” was actually a remake of the Ruby and the Romantics’ 1963 hit “Hey There Lonely Boy.”

After having few more hits, Holman quit making records and devoted his life as an ordained Baptist minister. Today he is still living in Philadelphia where he operates his own record company, Agape Records. His band, Eddie Holman Band is still active, embarking on tours up to this day.

 

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