Bobby Caldwell made the most of his 71 years, devoting the majority of his adulthood to his musical career. Caldwell’s influence also permeated throughout the R&B, soul, and hip hop worlds. His music was routinely covered by his fellow musicians as well as on “American Idol.” As noted by Caldwell’s LinkedIn, Michael Bolton, Boyz II Men, Natalie Cole, Donny Osmand, and Tupac either covered or sampled his music — and that’s just scratching the surface.
Unfortunately, the beloved singer suffered from a rare medical condition over the past several years of his life, which impeded his ability to perform. As Caldwell’s wife mentioned on Twitter, Caldwell had been floxed, which refers to a collection of health issues that develop in a small number of patients who’ve taken fluoroquinolone-based antibiotics. “In January of 2017 Bobby was given an antibiotic,” shared Caldwell’s team in 2021 (via Soul Tracks). “After taking the drug for several days he experienced bilateral Achilles tendon ruptures, and developed peripheral neuropathy. Despite these injuries, Bobby continued to perform with the aid of a wheelchair, cane, and his helpers. Unfortunately, Bobby’s condition continues to worsen. He has a great deal of neuropathy pain, and his mobility is limited.”
Caldwell pressed forward to the best of his ability after that, sitting proudly at his keyboard for what appears to have been one of his last shows in 2020.