Cuba M. Gooding, Sr. (born April 27, 1944) is the lead singer of the soul group The Main Ingredient, most notable for its two biggest hits, "Everybody Plays the Fool" (1972) and "Just Don't Want to Be Lonely" (1974). Gooding also had a brief solo career on Motown Records during the late-1970s and early-1980s. His biggest international success was Brian Auger's "Happiness Is Just Around the Bend" in 1983, which has in recent times been sampled by several R&B artists, as well as hitting the charts again as a remix by UK Hardcore Rave group Altern-8 in 1991. In the same year, samples from the song also featured prominently in Bizarre Inc's single Playing With Knives.
Born in New York City, New York, Gooding is a son of Dudley MacDonald Gooding and his wife Addie Alston. The elder Gooding was a native of Barbados who fled the island in 1936 to Cuba, and met and married a woman there. When she was murdered because of their affiliation with Pan Africanist leader Marcus Garvey, Dudley Gooding promised his wife on her deathbed that he would name his first son Cuba. His father died when Cuba was eleven years old.