Marvin Gaye Photography

Marvin Gaye

He possessed one of the silkiest voices in R&B and became an architect of neo-soul and the quiet storm styles long after he left this life. Marvin Gaye was both the “Prince of Motown” and the “Prince of Soul” thanks to early record label and scene-shaping singles like “How Sweet It Is (To Be Loved by You)” and “I Heard it Through the Grapevine.”

Transitioning with the times, Gaye addressed political, social and environmental issues on his 1971 milestone What’s Going On. Even while redefining soul music, he still maintained his seductive image with ’70s favorite “Let’s Get It On” and the following decade’s bedroom ballad “Sexual Healing.”

As much as his music played a pivotal role in history, so did his death, which came in 1984 at the hands of his own father during an argument gone awry. Gaye’s artistic contributions were never forgotten thanks to a 1987 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction and a 1996 Grammy Lifetime Achievement, alongside constant praise from modern day revivalists like John Legend, India.Arie and Robin Thicke.

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