Sam Cooke hah one of the smoothest voices in American music history. He began as a gospel artist, who was the lead singer of the Soul Stirrers. When he released a pop song, he was promptly fired by the group. Their loss was the mainstream American music scene’s gain. He would place 43 singles on the BILLBOARD Pop Chart and sell millions of albums.
His first pop chart hit was also the only number one song of his career. Released in the fall of 1957, “You Send Me” topped all three of BILLBOARD’S Pop Charts.
Best Sellers In Stores Charts – 12/2/57 – Two weeks at number one.
Most Played By DJ’s Chart – 12/9/57 – One week at number one.
Billboard Top 100 – 11/16/57 – Two weeks at number one.
His life came to a tragic end, December 10, 1964, when he was shot to death by a hotel office manager. The courts ruled it was justifiable homicide.
His legacy is that of an influential artist, who introduced a white audience to a new type of music.