Bobby Robinson (April 16, 1917 – January 7, 2011) was an African-American independent record producer and songwriter in New York, most active from the 1950s through the mid 1980s. He produced hits by Wilbert Harrison, The Shirelles, Dave “Baby” Cortez, Elmore James, Lee Dorsey, Gladys Knight & The Pips, King Curtis, Spoonie Gee, Grandmaster Flash & The Furious Five, Doug E. Fresh, and Kool Moe Dee. He founded or co-founded Red Robin Records, Whirlin’ Disc Records, Fury Records, Fire Records and Enjoy Records.
Rhythm and blues days
Born in Union, South Carolina, he served in the US Army in World War II. After the war, Robinson moved to New York City and opened “Bobby’s Record Shop” (later “Bobby’s Happy House”) in 1946. His was the first black-owned business on Harlem‘s famed 125th Street. Located on the corner of 125th St. and Frederick Douglass Boulevard (formerly, “8th Avenue”), his shop remained open until January 21, 2008, forced to close only because its landlord planned to raze the building for new construction. Robinson’s store outlasted large chain store competitors, including HMV and the Wiz. 
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