Soul singer Otis Clay passed away on January 8, 2016 at the age of 73. The Blues Hall of Fame inductee, best known for hit single "Trying to Live My Life Without You" died of a heart attack in Chicago. A noble soul he was actively involved in community work and had also served as a board member for the non-profit organization People for New Direction. His song "When the Gates Swing Open" for funerals will be missed by many of his community members for long.
Clay was born in Waxhaw, Mississippi to a musical family, and began taking part gospel choirs from young age. In 1957 Otis moved to Chicago and soon became regular in gospel vocal groups including the Golden Jubilaires, the Holy Wonders, the Famous Blue Jay Singers, and the Pilgrim Harmonizers. Otis made his first solo secular recordings in 1962. He was also associated with Gospel Songbirds, and the Sensational Nightingales. He also recorded for One-derful! Records in Chicago but his first hit came in 1967 with "That's How It Is (When You're In Love)", that registered on the Billboard R&B charts, followed by "A Lasting Love" (# 48 R&B). His association with Atlantic Records was a memorable event as he recorded "She's About a Mover," which became Clay's biggest pop hit, reaching # 97 on the Billboard Hot 100 (# 47 R&B). He remained active and popular with his recordings and also performed live act in Europe, Japan, as well as in parts of US. In 2007, he recorded Walk a Mile in My Shoe
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