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For this week’s cover, I wrote about Terry Huff, a largely forgotten singer and songwriter from a special moment in D.C. R&B.
Huff came from a family of 18 kids, was burned out of his house, went to a foster farm, sang on streetcorners, met a Greek named Johnny Boy Katsouros who fashioned him and his brother into a bankable teen soul act, quit music to join the D.C. Police, became a hero for gunning down heroin dealers, quit the force, recorded an indelible single called “I Destroyed Your Love,” and promptly faded into obscurity.
That’s the bullet-point version, anyway. Along the way, I got to meet some pretty great people. DJs like Scooter Magruder and Captain Fly dug up stories from the early days of Quiet Storm radio and a D.C. R&B community that thrived even in the shadow of towns like New York and Philly. Katsouros, who I’m told does the best ribs in Upper Marlboro, filled in the blanks that the brothers were too young to remember. Chet Fortune and WTU President George Parker talked about their brief collaboration with Terry in a group called Special Delivery. And Dana Mozie, the “G.O.P.’s Hip-Hop Ambassador,” talked about his continuing efforts to get Terry (62) a comeback.
Not to forget Kevin Coombe, the DJ/archivist behind DC Soul Recordings. He provided a nice label scan (below) of a rare Terry Huff 45.
Most important were Terry’s brothers Andrew and Larry. (Disclosure: I used to play music with them when we lived as neighbors in Petworth.) They showed limitless patience in giving me their versions of what, exactly, happened to their volatile brother.