DETROIT - Singer, songwriter and record producer Harvey Fuqua, an early mentor of Marvin Gaye, has died. Fuqua was 80.
Ron Brewington of the Motown Alumni Association says Fuqua died of a heart attack Tuesday at a Detroit hospital.
The Louisville, Ky., native founded the R&B-doo-wop group the Moonglows, which signed with DJ Alan Freed. The group's first single was the 1954 hit "Sincerely."
Fuqua added Gaye and others in 1958 to a reconstituted group Fuqua called Harvey and the Moonglows. It had the 1958 hit "Ten Commandments of Love." He started Tri-Phi and Harvey Records in 1961, recording the Spinners, Junior Walker & the All Stars, and Shorty Long.
Motown Records founder Berry Gordy later hired Fuqua to develop recording talent.
In the early 1980s, as the troubled Gaye was trying to mount a comeback while battling drugs and personal problems, Fuqua joined him at his new base on Ostend, Belgium, to help him record his smash single "Sexual Healing." Fuqua is credited as "production adviser" on the ensuing album "Midnight Love," the last released in Gaye's lifetime.
- From wire reports