Sad news to report, 90’s R&B singer Sam Salter has passed away at 46! You may remember his Top 20 hit, ‘After 12 Before 6’ that peaked at #12 on the Billboard 200!
A Los Angeles, California native and the second of seven children, Salter developed his passion for singing at the Faithful Church of God in Christ, going on to win his high school’s talent show during his senior year.
“I won $30!” Salter told Billboard in 1997, adding that the achievement motivated him to pursue a career as a singer. “It felt so good. I was like, ‘I can do this!’”
Salter got his start in the music industry earlier that year after record executive and producer L.A. Reid signed him to his Atlanta, Georgia-based label LaFace Records, adding the young singer to an all-star roster featuring the likes of OutKast, Toni Braxton, Goodie Mob and more.
“I was floored,” Reid told Billboard about hearing Salter’s demo tape for the first time. “He’s a great singer. I mean, we live in an era where you don’t necessarily have to be, but he is!”
Salter relocated from Los Angeles to Atlanta to work on a debut album with LaFace co-founder and producer Kenneth “Babyface” Edmonds, who the singer named as one of his musical influences alongside R&B legend Stevie Wonder.
“They are very sincere in what they do,” Salter told Billboard about why Wonder and Babyface inspired him. “They put their all into every song. And I’m a fan of longevity. They’ve been able to sustain it, [and] that’s what I want to do.”
Salter’s debut single “After 12 Before 6” peaked at 19 on the Billboard U.S. R&B chart and at 51 on the Hot 100 ranking. According to Billboard’s Jeff Clark, the “smooth, classic” song “tells the story of a man trying to balance a career and a relationship.”
No Immediate cause of death was revealed… RIP!
Let’s dig in the CRATES for this CLASSIC: