first gained fame as the mesmerizing lead falsetto of '70s supergroup Earth, Wind & Fire
. The singer/percussionist's four-octave range set a high standard for upper-range pop vocalists. Bailey
's shimmering falsetto blended perfectly with Maurice White's charismatic tenor to help the group build a reputation for exciting, live shows (complete with feats of magic) and innovative recordings. Six-time Grammy winners Earth, Wind & Fire
had 46 charting R&B singles, 33 charting pop singles including eight gold singles. The group also won four American Music Awards and earned more than 50 gold and platinum albums. In 1982, while continuing his work with EWF, Philip signed a solo deal with Columbia, releasing his first solo LP Continuation. Then in October 1984, Chinese Wall
was issued, an album Bailey co-produced with Phil Collins. The second single, "Easy Lover," a duet with Phil Collins, became a worldwide hit, earning Bailey his first gold solo record. After Bailey
's 1986 album, Inside Out
, he began making a name for himself in the gospel world, releasing four recordings on Word. Shortly after returning to the studio with Earth Wind & Fire to record the band's Grammy-nominated Millennium
Bailey collaborated with singer Brian McKnight and members of PM Dawn and Arrested Development to co-write and record another pop/R&B solo project, Philip Bailey
(1994). A single from the LP, "Here with Me" charted #66 R&B in early 1994. In 1998, his album Life and Love was released throughout Europe.
In 1999, Bailey took another stylistic turn and signed with Heads Up International released the enhanced CD, Dreams
, a smooth jazz album that features a "who's who" of contemporary jazz artists, including Gerald Albright, Luis Conte, Everette Harp, Grover Washington, Jr. and Pat Metheny.