Gladys Horton of The Marvelettes Dies

(Gibson) Gladys Horton, the co-founder of hit Motown group The Marvelettes, has died. The singer passed away late on Wednesday (January 26) in a Los Angeles nursing home, according to Spinner.com. She was 66. Horton's cause of death is unknown, although her son said that she had been recovering from complications from a stroke she suffered last year.

Horton was born in a Detroit suburb in 1944, and sang in the high school glee club as a teenager. She recruited four other girls from the club to form a singing group, which was dubbed Casinyets (as in, "can't sing yet").

In 1961, the group landed a Motown contract with an audition performance of "Please, Mr. Postman" the song that would grant them stardom. With Horton singing lead, they recorded the tune with The Funk Brothers. By the time it was released in the summer of '61, the group had taken a new name, The Marvelettes. Soon, "Please, Mr. Postman" would top the Billboard pop charts. more on this story

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