• RainbowFunk

People make the world go round

Updated: Oct 29, 2019


Recorded at: RainbowFunk Studios

Music & Vocals by: Soul Dimension band

Mixed & Mastered by: John Thompson

Linda Creed Epstein – The Woman Behind the Fame Born in the Mount Airy section of Philadelphia in December 1949, Linda Creed was active in music at German town High School. After graduation, Linda decided against college and devoted her energies to writing and producing music. She found her first writing success in 1971 at the age 22 when Dusty Springfield recorded her song “Free Girl.” (Ironically, Dusty Springfield succumbed to breast cancer herself in 1987.)

She moved to Los Angeles and while there managed the group “War” and met her future husband, Stephen Epstein. Eventually she and Stephen, now married, returned to Philadelphia where she connected with Kenny Gamble and teamed up with Thom Bell. In time her work with Thom Bell, initially with The Stylistics and then with The Spinners, brought her huge commercial success and was an integral part of what became known as the “Philly Sound.” She wrote for other notables such as Teddy Pendergrass and George Benson. She was co-writer of “The Greatest Love of All,” theme song for the Muhammed Ali film biography 'The Greatest' and recorded by George Benson.

While her public life was one of fame and success, her private life was one filled with family and friends, the joy of motherhood, and the shadow of breast cancer. At the tender age of 26, Linda was diagnosed with breast cancer. Her indomitable spirit helped her survive ten more years. The private Linda was known for her generous and nurturing heart. She took great joy in her daughters. Despite her illness, she made herself available to her family and friends, helping them in any way she could and was instrumental in helping Teddy Pendergass recover his spirits after his accident.

She died of breast cancer on April 10th, 1986 at the age of 37, survived by her husband Stephen, her two daughters, her parents, a sister, and two brothers.

Thomas Randolph Bell, 27th January 1943, Kingston, Jamaica.

Thom Bell studied classical piano as a child and was raised in Philadelphia since the age of 5.

His mother used to work at the University of Pennsylvania as the co-coordinator of exchange students. Thom's grandfather was a teacher of botany and a horticulture at UP. He joined the Philadelphia version of Kenny Gamble's harmony group the Romeos in 1959, and by the age of 19 was working as a conductor and arranger for Chubby Checker for two years.

There was a version of the Romeo's in Detroit, that featured Lamont Dozier within it's own line-up, not to be confused. He relocated to New York to study in 1960-61. He relocated back to Philadelphia in 1963. The office shared a building with Cameo Records and when the former venture folded, Thom worked for the label as a session pianist. Later Thom signed on as a session pianist with Cameo Records, where he first worked with the Delfonics. Originally the group were known as The Five Guys, however, Thom reduced the number to three. When their manager Stan Watson formed the Philly Groove label in 1968, he became a producer, working on the Delfonics songs 'La La Means I Love You' (which won Thom his Grammy award),

and the 1970 song 'Didn't I Blow Your Mind This Time'.

At the award of the Grammy for the Delfonics song, Thom wasn't allowed to collect the award as, at that time, Black people were not allowed to do so, so Thom never attended an awards ceremony there again. Thom then joined up again with the Kenny Gamble and Leon Huff Philadelphia International Records. Between1971 and 1974 Thom worked on the Stylistics releases, including, 'You Are Everything' in 1971, 'Betcha By Golly Wow' and 'I'm Stone In Love With You', both released in 1972. Linda Creed

His songwriting collaboration with the late Linda Creed being quite remarkable.

Thom also worked with the Reggae artist Bob Marley, with whom Thom was good friends with. He enjoyed success with the (Detroit) Spinners ('Games People Play' etc), the Bee Gees and Johnny Mathis, and continued his career as a producer, arranger and songwriter.

After producing two LP's for the singer Deniece Williams during the early'80s, he resurfaced to appear on efforts by various artists ranging from Phyllis Hyman to Chuck Mangione.

Thom Bell, also worked alongside Elton John. Elton john. Those sessions were eventually released at a later date. Thom is the uncle of the artist Leroy Burgess. Through the 1990s, he worked with James Ingram, Angela Winbush, and Earth,Wind & Fire.

Thom moved to Washington State and then Hawaii and in between got divorced and remarried. He was then awarded a place on the music walk of fame at the Academy Of Music.

A plaque was placed outside Philadelphia International Records on Broad St.

Thom is alive and well and lived in Snag Island, in the early Nineties, and Hawaii according to recent reports and has 8 children. He doesn't like living in the city.

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