Eugene Record was 64.
Eugene Record, a founding member and creative force behind R&B vocal group the Chi-Lites, died July 22 after a long battle with cancer. He was 64.
Though Record was best known for writing the smooth soul group's biggest R&B/pop crossover hits in the early 1970s, "Have You Seen Her" and "Oh Girl," he found himself back on the R&B and pop charts in 2003 when Beyonce sampled the horn flourish from an earlier composition -- the Chi-Lites' 1970 R&B hit, "Are You My Woman? (Tell Me So)" -- for her own megahit "Crazy in Love." The song later won the Grammy Award for best R&B song.
Another top 10 R&B Chi-Lites entry, 1974's "There Will Never Be Any Peace (Until God Is Seated at the Conference Table)," was sampled by Fantasia on the "American Idol" winner's third single, "Baby Mama." That tune, along with other Chi-Lites songs, was co-written by Record and his former wife, the late Barbara Acklin.
As lead singer for the group, Record's warm tenor/sweet falsetto and penchant for breaking mid-song into spoken verse became hallmarks of the Chi-Lites' romantic sound.
The group initially began as the Chanteurs in the doo-wop era of the late 1950s, later becoming the Hi-Lites. Modifying the name of its hometown, Chicago, the group became the Chi-Lites in 1964 with a lineup that included Record, Robert Lester, Marshall Thompson and Creadel Jones.
The Chi-Lites scored a No. 1 on Billboard's R&B Albums chart in 1972 with the Brunswick Records effort, "A Lonely Man."
Record embarked on a solo career in 1976, releasing three albums on Warner Bros. before reuniting with the original Chi-Lite line-up in 1980. Recording for Record's label, Chi-Sound, the group earned two more R&B hits in 1982 and 1983, respectively: "Hot on a Thing (Called Love)" and "Bottom's Up." In 2000, the Chi-Lites were inducted into the Rhythm and Blues Hall of Fame. The group also appeared in the 2002 soul music documentary, "Only the Strong Survive."
Record is survived by his wife Jackie. Funeral services will be held Wednesday (July 27) at Valley Kingdom Ministries International in Oak Forest, Illinois.