The Elgins were an American vocal group signed to Motown in the 1960s.
Robert Fleming, Johnny Dawson, Cleo “Duke” Miller and Norman McLean came together in the early 1960s, recording for several local Detroit labels under different names. They recorded as The Downbeats for Motown with little success. The company suggested they add female singer Saundra Mallett (later Saundra Edwards), who had also recorded unsuccessfully under the label, to the group. They were then renamed as The Elgins (a name The Temptations had very briefly used) and started recording in 1965.
The group found considerably more success than they had previously (as separate artists) and had a whole album release, Darling Baby, before breaking up in 1967. They enjoyed a resurgence (even though the group itself was no longer in existence) when their song “Heaven Must Have Sent You” was reissued in Britain in 1971 and became a massive hit.
Following their newfound British success, the group reformed without Saundra Edwards (who was replaced with Yvonne Allen) and toured the UK. This group performed occasionally throughout the 1970s and 1980s. The Elgins (made up of Yvonne Allen, Johnny Dawson, Norman McLean and Jimmy Charles) and Saundra (separately, may I add) later recorded for Ian Levine’s Motown revival label Motorcity Records. The group released two singles, a rerecorded “Heaven Must Have Sent You” in 1989 and “It’s Sensational” in 1992. They put out two albums (more than at Motown): Take The Train (1990) and Sensational (1991). The group continued to perform in the 1990s. Saundra, meanwhile, released one solo Motorcity single entitled “Tell A Fool Goodbye” in 1990.
Original lead singer Saundra Edwards passed away in 2002.
- Saundra Edwards (1965-67)
- Robert Fleming (1965-67)
- Cleo “Duke” Miller (1965-67)
- Johnny Dawson (1965-67, 1971-90s)
- Norman McLean (1965-67, 1971-90s)
- Yvonne Allen (1971-90s)
- Jimmy Charles (1989-90s)
The Marvels of The Elgins
- DARLING BABY
- HEAVEN MUST HAVE SENT YOU
- PUT YOURSELF IN MY PLACE