The Intruders - Biography

The Intruders were a group popular in the 1960s and '70s. Teaming up with Kenny Gamble and Leon Huff , they were pioneers in establishing the Philly Soul sound . 


The original line-up of The Intruders was formed in 1960 by Sam "Little Sonny" Brown, Eugene "Bird" Daughtry, Phillip "Phil" Terry and Robert "Big Sonny" Edwards. The quartet began performing in a style that owed equally to doo-wop and gospel. In 1961 they released "Coming Home Soon" b/w "I'm Sold on You" on Gowen. The following year, as "The Four Intruders," they released "This Is My Son" b/w "My Baby." Again as The Intruders they released "I'm Sold on You" b/w "Come Home Soon" on Lost Nite. In 1964 they cut "But You Belong to Me" b/w "Jack Be Nimble" for Music Voice.


Songwriters/producers Kenny Gamble and Leon Huff started Gamble Records and signed The Intruders in 1966. Their first single released at Gamble was “(We'll Be) United" b/w "Up And Down the Ladder. They released their debut full-length, The Intruders Are Together (1967 Gamble), the following year. It wasn't until the following year, with the release of "Cowboys to Girls," that they scored their first Top 40 hit. It was included on their second album, Cowboys to Girls (1968 Gamble). 


Lead singer Little Sonny was replaced by Robert "Bobby Starr" Ferguson in 1969, due to issues with his drug addiction. The new line-up released When We Get Married (1970 Gamble), the title track of which was a modest hit. The following year, Gamble and Huff convinced Columbia Records to grant them the money to start a new label, Philadelphia International. Brown once again joined the group in 1973 and they released Save the Children (1973 Philadelphia International). For Energy of Love (1974 TSOP), they moved to the labels imprint, TSOP (The Sound of Philadelphia). In 1977, the members of The Intruders joined Archie Bell, Billy Paul, Dee Dee Sharp Gamble, Harold Melvin and The Blue Notes, Lou Rawls, The O'Jays, and Teddy Pendergrass as The Philadelphia International All-Stars who released on album, Let's Clean up the Ghetto (1977). They released their last single, "I'll Always Love My Mama," before the members went their separate ways. Post-music careers include truck driving, insurance sales and politics.  


In 1984, Daughtry formed a new line-up with Lee Williams, a cousin -- Al Miller and his brother Fred. They released one album, Who Do You Love? (1985 Streetwave).  In 1994, Daughtry passed away after a long struggle with cancer. The following year, after losing both his wife and mother, Brown commit suicide, jumping off the Strawberry Mansion bridge into the Schuykill River. In 2002, his temporary replacement, Bobby Starr, formed a group with Glenn Montgomery and Phil Gay, calling themselves The Intruders (despite containing no original members). This line-up performed on PBS and toured as part of the Love Train - Sound of Philadelphia Concert series in 2008.



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