Clyde McPhatter was an American R&B singer, perhaps the most widely imitated R&B singer of the 1950s and 1960s, making him a key figure in the shaping of doo-wop and R&B.
He had high-pitched tenor, that was steeped in the gospel music he sang in much of his younger life. McPhatter was lead tenor for The Mount Lebanon Singers, a gospel group he formed as a teenager and later, lead tenor for Billy Ward and His Dominoes. McPhatter was largely responsible for the success the Dominoes initially enjoyed. After his tenure with the Dominoes, McPhatter formed his own group, The Drifters, before going solo. Only 39 at the time of his death, he had struggled for years with alcoholism and depression and was broke and despondent over a mismanaged career that made him a legend but hardly a success. Clyde McPhatter left a legacy of over 22 years of recording history.