Jesse Belvin

Jesse Lorenzo Belvin (December 15, 1932 – February 6, 1960) was an American singer, pianist and songwriter popular in the 1950s. Belvin co-wrote the 1954 Penguins' doo-wop classic "Earth Angel", which sold more than 10 million copies, while his top recording was the 1956 single "Goodnight My Love", a song that reached No. 7 on Billboard's R&B chart. Belvin's success was cut short by his death in a car crash at the age of 27. The accident, which also claimed the lives of his wife Jo Ann and their driver, occurred after a concert in Little Rock, Arkansas that had been disrupted at least twice by white supremacists. According to an Arkansas state trooper at the scene of the accident, the tires of Belvin's 1959 Cadillac had "obviously been tampered with". After his death, legendary blues singer Etta James referred to Belvin as the "most gifted of us all. Even now I consider him the greatest singer of my generation. Rhythm and Blues, Rock and Roll, crooner, you name it, he was going to be bigger than Sam Cooke, bigger than Nat Cole."

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