The Manhattans Remember the Lives of Winfred "Blue" Lovett, Sony Bivens and Kenneth Kelly
Members of The Manhattans, R&B award winning singing group remembered Blue Lovett and Sony Bivins.Click thumbnail to view full-size
Source-Youtube by Daniel Amorim
Grammy Award Winners "The Manhattans" celebrate the Life of "Blue Lovett"
The #Grammy Award-winning group, The Manhattans memorialized #Winfred Lorenzo "Blue" Lovett, the ultimate bass voice of scintillating love songs. Another original group member Sonny Bivins, who was a co-founder, died a few days before "Blue," was also recognized at this memorial service. The impeccable talents of #The Manhattans produced such major hits as Shining Star, Kiss and Say Goodbye, Crazy and One Life To Live. Blue and Sonny, contributed flawless entertainment over four decades that will never be forgotten. We must sadly acknowledge that recently Kenneth Kelly, died as well. He was the last original member of The Manhattans. Kenny, Blue, and Sonny were dear friends, who will be missed. and will always be loved and remembered.
Order of Celebration in Memory of "Blue" Lovett
There was an "Order of Celebration" which included greetings, an honor guard ceremony, prayers of comfort, hymns, scriptural readings of Isaiah 41:10 which states, "Do not be afraid, for I am with you. Do not be anxious, for I am your God. I will fortify you, yes, I will help you. I will really hold on to you with my right hand of righteousness." Honorary citations and resolutions were presented by local and state politicians. Musical tributes were given by Gerald Alston, lead singer of The Manhattans, who performed a compelling rendition of the song Memories, featured in the video above. Gerald's rhythmic vocals, filled the room as he expressed, "Oh, I love you, my brother," during this performance. Jerry Blake, a previous band member of The Manhattans, performed an impeccable saxophone tribute during the service. Loving presentations were presented from such artists as Herb of Peaches and Herb, Ray, Goodman and Brown, DJ Mell, Regina Belle, Keith Rogers, and numerous entertainers as well as family and friends from all over the world. Gerald Alston, the lead singer of The Manhattans, was asked that the group join a show to honor Legends of R & B, in the future. Such groups as The Dells, The Manhattans, Ray Goodman, and Brown will be featured. Blue's beloved wife Anna, will be an honorary guest at this event.
An array of speakers extended their condolences and expressed their privilege to know Blue Lovett. Gerald Alston's experience was especially touching as he expressed how, "I spent a week with Blue and I asked him, 'what do you want us to do?' Blue said Gerald, you already know and he passed the torch to me." Gerald knew that Blue had trained him to continue the legacy of The Manhattans. He went on to express, "I will always miss and love him. Every time, I open my mouth to sing, he will always be in my heart." Gerald, had band members of The Manhattans and #Regina Belle, stand as he thanked them for contributing so much to the group. He also thanked Tyson, a current member, and Kenneth Kelly, a previous member of The Manhattans. Troy May, one of the group's members also emotionally explained, "When I met Blue, I began my education at Manhattan university. With help from Gerald, I learned the show in a few days." Troy, has been with The Manhattans for more than twenty years which he thanked Blue, "who was there for me in so many ways." May, told Edna Alston, Gerald's wife that he loved them both and that "we will get through this."
Words of Comfort and Encouragement
Good-humored memories were presented by Billy Brown, of Ray, Goodman, and Brown. He wanted to say a few words about his "friend," Blue. Brown was delighted to acknowledge that Blue gave him the name, "Downtown Billy Brown." When he spoke to Blue before his death, Brown recalled as Lovett answered the telephone, he said those very words. "Downtown Billy Brown, I love you. I said Blue I love you too." Herb of #Peaches and Herb, then went on to perform a song with Billy Brown. A few comforting words were given by religious leaders. Regina Belle then performed a selection. Afterward, Regina gave words of comfort by stating, "We should celebrate the life of our friend, mentor, and brother." Poetry was shared by The Manhattan Fan Club and Manhattanettes. They honored the memory of Blue by stating in part, "This is not kiss and say goodbye. We will miss you dearly in our heartfelt love for you. You will always be our shining star. You will always be that star a million to one. We will miss you." They went on to explain how Blue's fans will miss him although his music will linger on.
A Family Tribute from the Lovett Children and Anna, Blue's Wife
The Lovett children gathered before friends and family as they expressed endearing love for their "papa." Words from numerous hits by The Manhattans were intertwined within their poetry. Such words as, "This is a sad day since you've been gone. I walk by myself. I sleep by myself. I miss you." Blue's son also captivated the audience with his expressions by utilizing words from the group's songs in his poetry. "I'll never find another cause I'm crazy and hurt since I loss my daddy Blue. There is no me without you, really I miss you. It felt so good to be loved so bad. You're gone but not forgotten. . ." Blue's daughter also expressed, "Daddy, I will miss you." Within the program, a dedication was given to "Loving Family and Friends" of Blue. It stated in part, "You can remember him and only that he is gone, Or you can cherish his memory and let it live on, You can cry and close your mind, be empty and turn your back, Or you can do what he would want: smile; open your eyes, love and go on. 'He lives through us.'" These words of encouragement by Blue's children were heartwarming and memorable.
A beautiful letter was read from Anna Lovett, Blue's beloved wife entitled, My Love If My Heart Could Speak. . . Dot Thompson, a friend of the family shared these inspiring words which stated partially, "There are no words to express the depth of my Love for you, my undying gratitude to God for the gift of You, my Shining Star....Where would my life be, had I never met you. It is my honor and blessing to have been your wife for twenty-one years. What I would give, for twenty-one more. . . Although it was heart-wrenching watching you suffer, you handled this devastating journey with dignity and grace. . . I'll never forget when we held hands, you looked into my eyes and we cried and you said to me, 'I fought this fight so hard for you, please be strong for me.' And so, My Love, I will do my best to honor your request until our Lord makes my transition from this earth to Paradise, at which time we will be reunited again. Until then. . ." These words illuminated the hearts of everyone in the audience. This was the epitome of true love that Blue and Anna exhibited for more than twenty years. It is our prayer that they will see each other again in paradise just as John 5:28, 29 states, "Do not be amazed at this, for the hour is coming in which all those in the memorial tombs will hear his voice and come out, those who did good things to a resurrection of life, . . ." At that time, it is our hope and prayer to see Blue, again.
The "Order of Celebration" for Blue Lovett, was included the reading of his obituary. Edna Alston, the wife of Gerald, presented this. Edna tried to repress her emotions as she read about the "Life and Legacy" of Winfred Lorenzo "Blue" Lovett. He was eighty years of age at the time of his death. "Blue has always been known for his silky smooth bass voice and all of the sultry spoken sections of The Manhattans recordings. In 1974 Blue wrote Kiss and Say Goodbye, The Manhattans most notable hit song. The song was released in 1976 and went to the top of the R&B and Pop charts. This was the first single in the history of Columbia Records to be certified double platinum. Blue wrote many other songs including One Life to Live, I Kind of Miss You and I Want to be Your Everything.
1980 was a very big year for The Manhattans. That year they won a #Grammy for their number one hit, Shining Star." Health reasons caused Blue to leave the Manhattans for awhile. During that time he developed and worked with such artists as Regina Belle, The Lovettes, and Sugar. Finally, Blue did reunite with Gerald Alston on their 30th Anniversary as The Manhattans. New Singer Troy May and David Tyson became part of the group. They continued performing in cities throughout the United States, Japan, and South Africa as they broke numerous attendance records. "September 25, 2014, was Blue's last performance at Harrah's Casino in Atlantic City, NJ. Following the performance, Blue said, "I have been blessed, this has been a good run. . ." Winfred was proceeded in death by his parents. He leaves his loving wife, children, mother, sister, grand and great-grandchildren, host of nieces, nephews, cousins and millions of friends to cherish his memory. "Last but not least knowing that Gerald will carry-on the legacy they built on hard work, determination and professionalism that has been their trademark for 53 years. Blue leaves to honor his memory, his road family, Gerald Alston, Kenny Kelly, Phil Flood, Troy May, David Tyson, Dwight Fields, Jeffery Scott, Jason Simons, Charles Butler, Mark Bowers, Howard Robbins, Colt Younger, Curtis Dukes, Andre DeBourge, Tom Selsey and The East Coast Connection and Staff. Blue touched the lives of many people across the world and he will NEVER be forgotten." Winfred Lorenzo "Blue" Lovett and Sonny Bivins, touched the lives of millions through their music and personalities. They will be missed but we can gain solace in the astute music left behind. (Check out the memorable comments concerning Blue and Sonny at the bottom of this article under comments. You are welcome to include your own comments which will be posted on this article concerning your memories of Blue, Sonny, and Kenny as well as The Manhattans)
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Gerald Alston performs at Blue Lovett's memorial service the powerful version of "The Way We Were."
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