Celebrating Marvin Gaye‘s life instead of commiserating his murder, we here at Okayplayer are still missing the “Prince of Soul,” who would’ve turned 78 today (Apr. 2). Three whole generations of soul artists, crooners and lovers of music have been raised and conceived to Marvin Pentz Gay Jr.’s music—and rightfully so. He was the bridge that connected Saturday night sexy time with Sunday morning salvation, oozing charisma with every vocal inflection and howl.
As a singer, songwriter and record producer, Gaye helped to build the “Motown Sound” in the 1960s, then remixed it all in the ’70s with concept albums such as What’s Going On and Let’s Get It On that became hallmark entries into the history of music. Marvin Gaye, who has inspired everyone from Maxwell to Drake to Usher Raymond, influenced several R&B subgenres from quiet storm to neo-soul. We celebrate our soul brother’s birth with a host of compelling stories that range from collaborative mixes (Americo Gazaway) to unearthed interviews to a duet with BJ The Chicago Kid.
Below, relive all that and more and champion the late soul singer’s born day.