- Given the middle name Ronzoni, after the brand of pasta, which was the only food his mother could digest while pregnant with him; this was later shortened to the nickname Ronnie.
- Started the vocal group Shades of Jade while in high school.
- Made his TV debut on Sesame Street., as part of the musical theater workshop ensemble Listen, My Brother.
- In 1972, penned the song "Everybody Rejoice (A Brand New Day)," which was used in the Broadway musical The Wiz three years later.
- Met David Bowie in 1974, and went on to sing backup for the rock icon, as well as open for him on tour.
- In the mid-'70s, began providing backing vocals for albums by numerous pop icons, including Bette Midler, Barbra Streisand and Ringo Starr.
- Found success in the late '70s as a writer and singer of commercial tunes, performing jingles for soft drinks, fast-food restaurants and telephones.
- Solo debut album, Never Too Much, was released in 1981.
- Was involved in a fatal three-car accident in Los Angeles in 1986, when he lost control of the car he was driving.
- Ranked number 54 on Rolling Stone's 2008 list of the 100 Greatest Singers of All Time.
- Struggled with his weight throughout his career, and suffered from diabetes and hypertension.
- Was a lover of fashion and always performed in a tuxedo.
- 2003, Grammy — Best R&B Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocals: Winner
- 1990, Grammy — Best R&B Vocal Performance, Male: Winner
- 2003, Grammy — Best R&B Album: Winner
- 1991, Grammy — Best Rhythm & Blues Song: Winner
- 1991, Grammy — Best R&B Vocal Performance, Male: Winner
- 2003, Grammy — Best Male R&B Vocal Performance: Winner
- 1996, Grammy — Best Male R&B Vocal Performance: Winner
- 2003, Grammy — Song of the Year: Winner
- Patricia Joyner — Sister
- Luther Vandross Sr. — Father
- Mary Ida Vandross — Mother
- Ann D. Sanders — Sister
- Charles Anthony Vandross — Brother
- Attended Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo, Michigan, United States
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