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Vanderpool, Sylvia (1936–)

Vanderpool, Sylvia (1936–)

African-American singer and guitarist. Name variations: Sylvia Robinson; Mickey and Sylvia. Born Sylvia Vanderpool on Mar 6, 1936, in New York, NY; m. Joe Robinson, 1956.

Learned guitar from blues guitarist, Mickey Baker, and partnered with him as Mickey and Sylvia, releasing such hits as "Love Is Strange" (1956), "There Oughta Be a Law" (1957) and "Baby You're So Fine" (1961); split up when Baker went to Europe (1961), but briefly reunited (1965): with husband, founded All Platinum Records (late 1960s), and produced such hits as Moments' gold single "Love on a Two-Way Street" (1970) and Shirley and Company's "Shame, Shame, Shame" (1976); returned to singing, and had hits with "Pillow Talk" (1973), "Sweet Stuff" (1978) and "Automatic Lover" (1978); renamed troubled All Platinum label Sugar Hill, and gathered group of rap vocalists called Sugar Hill Gang, who went on to have smash hit with "Rappers Delight" (1979); served as producer for many successful rap bands, including Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five, and Funky Four Plus One.

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