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 James “Shep” Sheppard

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James “Shep” Sheppard Famous memorial

Birth
Queens, Queens County, New York, USA
Death
24 Jan 1970 (aged 34)
New York, New York County (Manhattan), New York, USA
Burial
Lynbrook, Nassau County, New York, USA
Plot
Path 100-Left
Memorial ID
6983705 View Source

R&B/Doo-Wop Musician. Born James Shane Sheppard, he was the lead singer of the musical group, 'The Heartbeats.' The group formed in 1958, in Jamaica, Queens, New York, with the likes of Albert Crump, Robby Tatum, Wally Roker, Vernon Seavers, and of course Sheppard. Known for there hits such as, 'Darling How Long,' 'A Thousand Miles Away, and 'Crazy For You,' the group recorded on the record labels, Rama, Hull, Roulette, Guyden, and Gee. Originally called 'The Hearts' the group began there career by mimicing songs by the likes of the Ravens, the Five Keys, the Moonglows, the Larks, the Flamingos, and the Orioles, and appearing in concerts in parks and singing on the street corner. It was at one of these occasions that they met Sheppard. Impressed by Sheppard's amazing singing voice the group asked him to be there lead singer. The new group became known as 'The Heartbeat Quintet,' and were soon playing graduations, weddings, basement parties, clubs, and other ceremonies. They came to the attention of jazz great Illinois Jacquet who let them rehearse in his basement. Thanks to Jacquet's brother, the group released there first single, 'Tormented,' on the Network Records Label, located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The group continued to record (having numerous successes) and appearing at venues like gigs at the Brooklyn Fox, the Apollo Theater, and with other musicians including Ray Charles, the Flamingos, and B.B. King, for three years. By 1958, personal problems were plaguing the group both financially and mentally. At one concert Sheppard passed out on stage, and Crump had to finish singing until Sheppard could continue. Following one last gig at the Howard Theater in Washington, D.C., the group disbanded for good. Other recordings by 'The Heartbeats' are, 'After New Years Eve,' 'Your Way,' '500 Miles To Go,''I Won't Be The Fool No More,' 'Down On My Knees,' and 'Everybody's Somebody's Fool.' After the breakup of the group Sheppard opened up a restaurant but continued to sing as a solo artist. In 1961, he met up with some old friends, Clarence Bassett (The Five Sharps) and Charles Baskerville (The Videos). The three men decided to start a new group and called themselves, 'Shep & The Limelights.' They soon signed with the Apt. Records Label, but after two flops, the group left and then signed with the Hull Records Label, one of Sheppard's old label. Together the group recorded the memorable ballad, 'Daddy's Home,' which told the story of a husband and father returning home from war. The song went to number 2 on the charts and was one of the group's better known songs. This was followed by the release of the number seven hit, 'Our Anniversary' in 1962. By 1966, the group were having problems, and soon disbanded. Both Baskerville and Bassett went onto join other groups including the Flamingos, Creative Funk, and the Players. In 1970, Sheppard reunited with Bassett and baskerville, but the reunion was short-lived. On January 24, 1970, Sheppard was found dead in his car on the Long Island Expressway. He was the victim of an apparent robbery, having been beaten to death. He was just 35 years old. Other recordings by 'The Limelites' are, 'Easy To Remember,' 'In Case I Forget,' 'Steal Away (With Your Baby),' 'The Monkey,' 'Who Told The Sandman,' and 'Three Steps From The Altar.'

R&B/Doo-Wop Musician. Born James Shane Sheppard, he was the lead singer of the musical group, 'The Heartbeats.' The group formed in 1958, in Jamaica, Queens, New York, with the likes of Albert Crump, Robby Tatum, Wally Roker, Vernon Seavers, and of course Sheppard. Known for there hits such as, 'Darling How Long,' 'A Thousand Miles Away, and 'Crazy For You,' the group recorded on the record labels, Rama, Hull, Roulette, Guyden, and Gee. Originally called 'The Hearts' the group began there career by mimicing songs by the likes of the Ravens, the Five Keys, the Moonglows, the Larks, the Flamingos, and the Orioles, and appearing in concerts in parks and singing on the street corner. It was at one of these occasions that they met Sheppard. Impressed by Sheppard's amazing singing voice the group asked him to be there lead singer. The new group became known as 'The Heartbeat Quintet,' and were soon playing graduations, weddings, basement parties, clubs, and other ceremonies. They came to the attention of jazz great Illinois Jacquet who let them rehearse in his basement. Thanks to Jacquet's brother, the group released there first single, 'Tormented,' on the Network Records Label, located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The group continued to record (having numerous successes) and appearing at venues like gigs at the Brooklyn Fox, the Apollo Theater, and with other musicians including Ray Charles, the Flamingos, and B.B. King, for three years. By 1958, personal problems were plaguing the group both financially and mentally. At one concert Sheppard passed out on stage, and Crump had to finish singing until Sheppard could continue. Following one last gig at the Howard Theater in Washington, D.C., the group disbanded for good. Other recordings by 'The Heartbeats' are, 'After New Years Eve,' 'Your Way,' '500 Miles To Go,''I Won't Be The Fool No More,' 'Down On My Knees,' and 'Everybody's Somebody's Fool.' After the breakup of the group Sheppard opened up a restaurant but continued to sing as a solo artist. In 1961, he met up with some old friends, Clarence Bassett (The Five Sharps) and Charles Baskerville (The Videos). The three men decided to start a new group and called themselves, 'Shep & The Limelights.' They soon signed with the Apt. Records Label, but after two flops, the group left and then signed with the Hull Records Label, one of Sheppard's old label. Together the group recorded the memorable ballad, 'Daddy's Home,' which told the story of a husband and father returning home from war. The song went to number 2 on the charts and was one of the group's better known songs. This was followed by the release of the number seven hit, 'Our Anniversary' in 1962. By 1966, the group were having problems, and soon disbanded. Both Baskerville and Bassett went onto join other groups including the Flamingos, Creative Funk, and the Players. In 1970, Sheppard reunited with Bassett and baskerville, but the reunion was short-lived. On January 24, 1970, Sheppard was found dead in his car on the Long Island Expressway. He was the victim of an apparent robbery, having been beaten to death. He was just 35 years old. Other recordings by 'The Limelites' are, 'Easy To Remember,' 'In Case I Forget,' 'Steal Away (With Your Baby),' 'The Monkey,' 'Who Told The Sandman,' and 'Three Steps From The Altar.'

Bio by: Kris 'Peterborough K' Peterson

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  • Maintained by: Find a Grave
  • Added: 2 Dec 2002
  • Find a Grave Memorial ID: 6983705
  • Find a Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/6983705/james-sheppard: accessed ), memorial page for James “Shep” Sheppard (24 Sep 1935–24 Jan 1970), Find a Grave Memorial ID 6983705, citing Rockville Cemetery, Lynbrook, Nassau County, New York, USA; Maintained by Find a Grave.