Soul collectors in general and Philly fans in particular will be sad to learn of the death on 30th December of Philly soul stalwart Herley Johnson Jr., best remembered for his work with cult group the Ambassadors. Formed in the mid-1960’s, the quintet were first signed to Atlantic where they released three singles before moving to the legendary Jimmy Bishop’ Arctic Records in 1968. Their biggest hit was 1969’s ‘I Really Love You’ while their ‘Soul Summit’ LP is hugely collectable. Little wonder, the Ambassadors channelled the classic Philly sweet soul sound while album credits include input from people like Bobby Martin, with help from Philly studio legends like Vince Montana, Norman Harris, Leon Huff, and Bobby Eli.

After the demise of the Ambassadors, three members -Herley Johnson Jr., Robert Todd and Orlando Oliphant later formed Creme D’Cocoa while Johnson also worked for a while under the solo alias, Jay Novelle.