Born Eddie Kendrick, but is best known by the stage name Eddie Kendricks, was an American singer and songwriter. Kendricks was noted for his distinctive falsetto singing style. He co-founded the iconic Motown singing group The Temptations, and was one of their lead singers from 1960 until 1971. His was the lead voice on such famous songs as "The Way You Do The Things You Do", "Get Ready", and "Just My Imagination (Running Away with Me).” Exasperated by a lack of creative and financial control, Kendricks left Motown in 1978, with the requirement of signing away the rights to his royalties. He moved first to Arista Records, and later to Atlantic Records. By this time, his popularity had waned, and he was also gradually losing his upper range as a result of chain smoking. In late 1991, Kendricks, by now living in his native Birmingham, Alabama, underwent surgery to have one of his lungs removed in hopes of preventing the spread of the cancer. He continued to tour through the summer of 1992, when he fell ill again and was hospitalized. Kendricks died of lung cancer in Birmingham on October 5, 1992 at age 52.
Rapper Kendrick Lamar was named by his mother after Kendricks.