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Gross, Richard

Richard Gross was somewhat the mystery man of The Moments because for much of his career he was fallaciously referred to as Richie Horsley.

Richard was one of the original Moments, along with Mark Greene, John Morgan, and Eric Olfus, Sr.  Eric, John and Richard recorded a couple of sides for Hog Records, “Baby I Want You”, backed with “Pray for Me” and Stang, “Not on the Outside”, backed with “Understanding”.  All was not well at Stang, however, because the trio plus Burt Keyes, a composer and producer, had a royalty dispute with their label bosses, Joe and Sylvia Robinson.  When the Robinsons didn’t pay up, the threesome jumped ship.

While Sylvia was preparing their departure contracts, she couldn’t remember Richard’s last name.  Richard frequently answered to the nickname “Richie”, so she made up the surname “Horsley” in order to expedite the process.  Unfortunately, most of what is written about The Moments refers to him by the name on these documents.

Frankie Crocker, Mark Greene, John and Richard billed themselves as Black Satin and released “My Confession of Love”, backed with “In Frankie’s Lonely Room”, in 1969 on the Turbo Label.

Eric, Mark and Richard inked a deal with Volt, the younger sister of Stax, in 1971.

Eventually, there was a legal showdown over the royalties, with the members involved taking the fight to Rhino Records, who owned the rights to the Moments’ music at the time, and the issue of forged signatures resurfaced.