The Manhattans – Shining Star

Shining Star – The Manhattans | Top 40 Chart Performance, Story and Song Meaning

Chart Performance: R&B(#4) and Pop (#5); 1980

Story Behind The Song By Ed Osborne

By the time the Manhattans racked up their first big R&B hit in 1972 they’d been together, in one form or another, since the late 1950’s. In 1963 the first Manhattans 45 – Come On Back by Ronnie and The Manhattans – appeared. A third-place showing at the Apollo Theater’s legendary amateur night contest brought the group a deal with Carnival Records and a string of Top 30 R&B chart singles. A shift to DeLuxe resulted in One Life To Live (#3 R&B; 1972), and a further move to Columbia gave them another #3 with There’s No Me Without You. Still, Top 40 success eluded them until Kiss And Say Goodbye topped both the R&B and Hot 100 lists in 1976. Even with such dramatic pop acceptance the Manhattans didn’t reach the Top 40 again until 1980 and Shining Star. Like Kiss And Say Goodbye, Shining Star contained a country flavor that set it apart from the standard R&B style. The down-home element shot Shining Star into the Top 5, and won the Manhattans a Grammy for Best R&B Vocal Performance – Group.

This content and all Song Meaning articles were created and written by Top 40 Contributing Editor Ed Osborne. © 2023 Ed Osborne. All Rights Reserved. In addition to these song meaning articles, Ed has written our “Year in Music 1960s-1990s” articles.

Produced by:

  • Leo Graham

Lyrics Written by:

  • Leo Graham
  • Paul Richmond


  • Won the Grammy Award for Best R&B Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocals in 1980