Gavin Christopher, American R&B/hip-hop musician, Died at 66

Gavin Christopher was born on May 1, 1949, and died on March 3, 2016.

He was an American R&B singer, songwriter, musician, and producer.

He was educated by the likes of Oscar Brown Jr., Donny Hathaway, Baby Huey and later on Curtis Mayfield, he honed his writing add singing skills and began his career, first in a band called Lyfe (which also included Chaka Khan).

Then, Chaka Khan left and joined Rufus (scoring several pop and R&B hits with them).

He later joined another band called High Voltage with future Rufus members Bobby Watson (bassist) and Tony Maiden, as well as Lalomie Washburn, who later wrote several Rufus songs.

Gavin himself would also become associated with Rufus, as he penned the song “Once You Get Started,” which was later recorded by the band and hit #10 on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1975.

Gavin also wrote three songs on Rufus’ next album, Rufus featuring Chaka Khan: “Dance Wit Me” (another big hit), “Fool’s Paradise,” and “Have A Good Time.”

He relocated to Los Angeles, California, where he was signed to his first recording contract with Island Records.

Gavin later moved back to Chicago to record and work with Curtis Mayfield on the Curtom/RSO record label.

Christopher worked with Herbie Hancock, writing and singing on several of his albums.

Gavin Christopher also penned the Hancock song, “Stars in Your Eyes”.

After a move to New York City, Christopher signed with EMI Manhattan Records and scored his biggest single, “One Step Closer to You” (his only Hot 100 hit as an artist, #22 in 1986) and another major R&B hit two years later with “You Are Who You Love.”

Gavin also produced music for artists including Grandmaster Flash, Afrika Bambaataa and The Ritchie Family, as well as mentored and worked with a young Mariah Carey prior to her getting her big break.

Gavin was heavily involved in the early hip-hop scene, writing such hits as “Girls Love the Way He Spins”, “Sign of the Time”, “We Gonna Rock America” and “All Night All Right”.

His sister is a dance music vocalist Shawn Christopher.

Gavin Christopher passed away at 66 yrs old.