Melvin Franklin

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Montgomery, Alabama
Birth Sign
Montgomery, Alabama

David Melvin English, also referred to as Melvin Franklin, was a bass singer from the United States. He was one of the original members of the Temptations, an American vocal group. The group gained notoriety for their elaborate dance, distinctive harmonies, and eye-catching attire. Franklin, who was born in Montgomery, Alabama, has always been interested in music. He participated in various singing ensembles while still a teen, including “The Voice Masters.” He started the group “The Elgins” with a handful of his classmates. The name was later changed to “The Temptations.” The only original members who remained in the organization throughout the years were Melvin and his friend Otis. His deep voice brought him great acclaim throughout his career, and he was regarded as one of the best vocalists of the modern era. His best-known compositions are “I Truly, Truly Believe,” “Silent Night,” and “Old Man River.” In addition to singing, he provided the voice of a character in the animated series “Pole Position.” He also appeared in the British action movie “Sky Bandits.”

Early Childhood & Life

On October 12, 1942, David Melvin English was born in Montgomery, Alabama, in the United States. Rose English was his mother, and she was from Mobile County, Alabama. His natural father served as a pastor for a local church. Rose said that he used “non-consensual intercourse” to conceive her.

His mother relocated to Detroit and later wed Willard Franklin not long after he was born. But her grandma requested that she be given custody of Melvin. Melvin finally moved home with his mother and stepfather when he was ten years old. He ultimately adopted his stepfather’s last name.

Early on, Melvin showed a keen interest in singing. He participated in a number of singing ensembles in Detroit, including “The Voice Masters.” He shared the stage alongside well-known performers including Richard Street, David Ruffin, and Lamont Dozier. He used to call Dozier and Ruffin his cousins.

His classmate Otis Williams extended an invitation for him to join his singing group while he was enrolled at Northwestern High School. The Elgins were the name of the late 1960s formation. Elbridge Bryant, Paul Williams, and Eddie Kendricks were more members.

Melvin’s It’s Temptations

The group, then known as “The Temptations,” obtained a record deal with Motown Records in 1961. Due to his love of the color blue, Melvin also picked up the nickname “Blue” throughout his tenure.

The Temptations Sing Smokey (1965), Getting Ready (1966), The Temptations with a Lot of Souls (1967), and The Temptations Wish It Would Rain (1968) are some of the group’s early recordings (1968). Their singles frequently reached the top of the charts and were hits. I Truly, Truly Believe by Aretha Franklin, from the album “The Temptations Wish It Would Rain,” became incredibly well-known.

The Way You Do the Things You Do (1964), which peaked at number 11 on the Billboard Hot 100, was one of the group’s most popular singles. It also made it into the charts in a number of other nations, including France, Canada, and the UK. Another song by the trio, “Beauty is Only Skin Deep,” was also published that year and became a great hit.

I Wish It Would Rain (1967), Run Away Child, Running Wild (1969), Just My Imagination (1971), and Masterpiece (1971) are some of the group’s other popular songs (1973). In the majority of the group’s singles, Melvin typically sang in the background.

The group continued to put out a number of popular albums throughout the years, including “On Broadway” (1969), “Sky’s the Limit” (1971), “Masterpiece” (1973), “A Song for You” (1975), “Reunion” (1982), and “To Be Continued” (1986).

Melvin’s Various Works

Melvin Franklin has a career as a voice actor in addition to singing. One of the main characters in the animated cartoon series “Pole Position,” “Wheels,” was voiced by him. Thirteen episodes of the show ran from September to December of 1984. Based on a well-known video game of the same name, the series.

He appeared in the British action movie “Sky Bandits” in 1986. The story of two outlaws who join the Royal Air Force and fly guns uses, or warplanes, was the subject of the movie. Despite an $18 million budget, the movie only made about $3 million in box office receipts.

Recognition & Achievements

As a member of The Temptations, Melvin Franklin was admitted to the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 1989.
Along with The Temptations, he was posthumously inducted into the Official R&B Hall of Fame in 2013. He also got a Lifetime Achievement Award that year, which his wife accepted on his behalf. He shared three Grammy Awards with The Temptations.

Melvin’s Individual Life

Kimberly Franklin was the wife of Melvin Franklin. The couple has six kids together.
Melvin was given an arthritic diagnosis in the late 1960s. Although he battled his sickness to keep performing, he eventually also experienced additional issues, such as diabetes. When he attempted to stop a man from stealing his automobile in 1978, he was also shot in the hand.

On February 17, 1995, he eventually into a coma following a string of convulsions. After a few days, on February 23, he passed away. In Los Angeles, California’s Forest Lawn Memorial Park is where his grave is located.

Estimated Net Worth

Melvin is one of the wealthiest and most well-known rock singers. According to our research, Melvin Franklin has a net worth of $5 million, as reported by Forbes, Wikipedia, and Business Insider.


The Temptations, a miniseries based on the well-known vocal group, was shown by NBC in 1998. DB Woodside, an actor, played the part of Melvin.