R & B Music legend Nick Ashford will be laid to rest later today at Abyssinian Baptist Church here in Harlem. He passed away last Monday from throat cancer.
Mr. Ashford and his equally talented songwriting partner-wife Valerie Simpson wrote some of their biggest pop classics for other stars, like Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell (“Ain’t no Mountan High Enough”, “Ain’t Nothing Like the Real Thing”), Diana Ross (“Reach Out and Touch (Somebody’s Hand)”) and Chaka Khan (“I’m Every Woman”), but also scored a major hit for themselves in 1984 with “Solid (As a Rock)”.
Michigan-raised Ashford met Simpson in 1964 at White Rock Baptist Church on 127th St in Harlem. The rest is musical history. The couple, who married in 1974, were inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2002, and were known to sometimes perform energetic, electric shows at their NYC restaurant/music venue Sugar Bar. Their last album, 1996’s Been Found, was a collaboration with poet Maya Angelou.
Rest in peace, Nick Ashford, your music lives on.
Abyssinian Baptist Church on 132 W 138 St., (bet., Lenox and Seventh Avenues)