Otis Clay dead at 73

Otis Clay has died aged 73 after suffering a heart attack in Chicago.

The news was confirmed on his official website.

The soul singer was born in Mississippi in 1942 and started his musical career with various gospel groups. In the mid-60s he signed with Chicago label One-derful! Records, where he recorded That’s How It Is (When You’re In Love) and A Lasting Love.

In 1971, Clay hooked up with producer Willie Mitchell at Hi Records and recorded his biggest hit Trying To Live My Life Without You.

He was nominated for a Grammy in 2008 in the Best Traditional R&B Vocal Performance category for the track Walk A Mile In My Shoes, and was inducted into the Blues Hall Of Fame in 2013.

After learning of Clay’s death, his longtime collaborator Billy Price told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: “After the shock of this wore off a little, I was left with a feeling of gratitude to have known him.

“I had the opportunity to sing with him and to learn from one of the true masters of the genre I work in. We first sang together in 1983, and I have so many memories of the great shows we did together over the years.”

Clay and Price were due to perform together at the 37th annual Blues Music Awards in Memphis in May, where they’re nominated in the Soul Blues Album category for 2015 release This Time For Real.

Scott Munro
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Scott has spent 35 years in newspapers, magazines and online as an editor, production editor, sub-editor, designer, writer and reviewer. Scott joined our news desk in the summer of 2014 before moving to the e-commerce team in 2020. Scott keeps Louder’s buyer’s guides up to date, writes about the best deals for music fans, keeps on top of the latest tech releases and reviews headphones, speakers, earplugs and more. Over the last 10 years, Scott has written more than 11,000 articles across Louder, Classic Rock, Metal Hammer and Prog. He's previously written for publications including IGN, the Sunday Mirror, Daily Record and The Herald newspapers, covering everything from daily news and weekly features, to tech reviews, video games, travel and whisky. Scott's favourite bands are Fields Of The Nephilim, The Cure, New Model Army, All About Eve, The Mission, Cocteau Twins, Drab Majesty, Marillion and Rush.