LAS VEGAS (CelebrityAccess) — Jimmy Ruffin, a Motown singer best known for his 1966 "What Becomes of the Brokenhearted," died on Monday in Las Vegas. He was 78 at the time of his passing.
A native of Collinsville, Mississippi, Ruffin got his start singing a gospel group, the Dixie Nightingales, and then touring with his brother as a part of the Ruffin Brothers, according to a biography by Kefauver Inge, but moved on to become a staple of Motown, recording several hits in the late 1960s, including the aforementioned "Brokenhearted" as well as“ I’ve Passed This Way Before,” “Gonna Give Her All the Love I’ve Got,” and the 1969 hit “Farewell Is a Lonely Sound.”.
Ruffin toured regularly in the U.S. and made several album after the 1960s, but his last big hit in the U.S. was “Hold On to My Love,” released in 1980.
Ruffin moved to the UK in the 1980s and continued his career, collaborating with several artists there, including Paul Weller and the pop group Heaven 17.
"All of his songs were about love, so that spoke to the kind of spirited guy he was, and spiritual too," Ruffin's daughter Philicia told the Detroit Free Press. "He came up in the church, and that's where he started singing." – Staff Writers