Posted by themusicsover on June 19, 2014
February 11, 1939 – June 19, 2014
Gerry Goffin was arguably America’s most prolific hit lyricist. During the second half of the 20th century, no fewer than 50 songs that he penned the lyrics for made the Top 40. Born in Brooklyn, New York, Goffin married Carole King who also happened to be his song writing partner throughout the ’60s. As part of the legendary Brill Building collective, Goffin and King wrote such pop and rock standards as “Will You Love Me Tomorrow,” “Take Good Care Of My Baby,” “The Loco-Motion,” “Go Away Little Girl,” and “Pleasant Valley Sunshine.” The seemingly endless list of artists who made their songs into hits includes Little Eva, the Shirelles, the Four Seasons, Bobby Vee, Dion & the Belmonts, Grand Funk Railroad, the Monkees, and Aretha Franklin. Goffin also had successful writing partnerships with Barry Goldberg, Barry Mann, Michael Masser, and Russ Titelman. He was nominated for an Academy Award in for his co-write on the theme song to the 1975 film, Mahogany, which was sung by Diana Ross. Goffin also wrote the Whitney Houston hit, “Savin’ All My Love for You.” He and King were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1990. Gerry Goffin was 75 when he died of natural causes on June 19, 2014.
Thanks to Harold Lepidus at Bob Dylan Examiner for the assist.
Posted in Pop, Rock, Songwriter | Tagged: Aretha Franklin, Barry Goldberg, Barry Manny, Bobby Vee, Carole King, Diana Ross, Dion & The Belmonts, Gerry Goffin, Grand Funk Railroad, Little Eva, Michael Masser, Russ Titelman, The Four Seasons, The Monkesees, The Shirelles, Whitney Houston | 3 Comments »
Posted by themusicsover on April 29, 2012
August 31, 1939 – April 29, 2012
© Jim McCrary / From jimmccrary.com
Jim McCrary was an award-winning photographer whose portfolio includes some of the most iconic rock album covers in history. Born and raised in the Los Angeles area, McCrary was mostly self-taught by the time he enrolled in a college photography program. In 1967, McCrary was hired by A&M Records where he was their chief photographer. Over the next seven years, he took photographs that ended up on the covers of over 300 albums, many of which are some of the famous in rock history. They include Carole King’s Tapestry, the Carpenters’ Now and Then, and Joe Cocker‘s Mad Dogs and Englishmen, to name just a few. The list of other artists he captured lasting images of includes Gram Parsons, Cat Stevens, Lee Michaels, Styx, and Billy Preston. In 1974, McCrary opened his own studio in Hollywood where he worked for the better part of the next 20 years. That was followed by a photography supply store. Jim McCrary was 72 when he died of complications from a chronic nervous system disorder on April 29, 2012.
Thanks to Henk de Bruin at 2+ Printing for the assist.
Posted in Other | Tagged: Billy Preston, Carole King, Cat Stevens, Gram Parsons, Jim McCrary, Joe Cocker, Lee Michaels, Styx, The Carpenters | 1 Comment »
Posted by themusicsover on December 18, 2011
March 15, 1944 – December 18, 2011
Ralph MacDonald was an in-demand percussionist and hit songwriter who could count two of the biggest R&B songs of the ’70s as his own. Growing up in a musical family in Harlem, New York, MacDonald first picked up the steelpan as a youngster. By the time he was 17, he had already played his first big gig at a local Harry Belafonte show. He continued on with Belafonte for the next ten years until parting ways in 1971. MacDonald soon became one of contemporary music’s most in-demand session players, performing on countless R&B, jazz and disco records. The list of those he recorded with includes George Benson, Paul Simon, Jimmy Buffett, Carole King, Average White Band, the Brothers Johnson, Amy Winehouse, Aretha Franklin, and David Bowie. MacDonald also released several albums under his own name. His song, “Calypso Breakdown” can be heard on the Saturday Night Fever soundtrack. As a songwriter, MacDonald scored to massive c0-writing hits; “Where Is The Love,” the 1971 hit for Roberta Flack, and “Just The Two Of Us,” the Grammy-winning hit for Bill Withers in 1981. Ralph MacDonald was 67 when he died of lung cancer on December 8, 2011.
Thanks to Paul Bearer for the assist.
Posted in Jazz, Musician, R&B, Songwriter | Tagged: Amy Winehouse, Aretha Franklin, Average White Band, Bill Withers, Carole King, David Bowie, George Benson, Harry Belafonte, Jimmy Buffett, Paul Simon, Ralph MacDonald, Roberta Flack, The Brothers Johnson | 1 Comment »
Posted by themusicsover on January 17, 2011
April 17, 1934 -January 17, 2011
Don Kirshner was a music publisher, producer, songwriter-manager, and television host who rightfully earned the nickname, The Man With The Golden Ear. His music career began during the ’50s when he and his partner, Al Nevins, launched Aldon Music, a publishing company that included such future superstar talent as Neil Diamond, Bobby Darin, Carole King, Gerry Goffin, and Neil Sedaka. Kirshner also owned three successful record labels during the early part of his career. In the early ’60s, the creators of a new NBC television program enlisted Kirshner to provide songs for that show. The influential sit-com followed the fictional adventures of an up-and-coming band as it bounced from one loony situation to another while performing catchy pop songs along the way. The show was called The Monkees, and Kirshner brought songs like “I’m A Believer,” “Last Train To Clarksville,” and several others that would become hits that help define the era. He later helped create an animated version of that same concept with The Archies. Then in 1973, Kirshner became a television star in his own right with the launch of Don Kirshner’s Rock Concert. The late night show offered full live performances of songs by current rock stars, making it unique in a time where lip syncing on television was the norm. For many rock music fans in a pre-MTV, pre-youtube era, it was THE only way to enjoy your favorite bands live. Along with being executive producer, Kirshner introduced each act in a monotone manner that was later popularly parodied by Paul Shaffer on Saturday Night Live. The show’s premiere episode included the Rolling Stones and and the series continued at that pace hosting the likes of Alice Cooper, the Allman Brothers Band, Black Sabbath, Aerosmith, Rush, the Eagles, the Ramones, KISS, and Kansas. It quickly became serious competition for other late night programs like The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson. The show ran until 1981. Don Kirshner was 76 when he died of heart failure on January 17, 2011.
Thanks to Craig Rosen at Number1Albums for the help
Posted in Producer, Publishing, Record Label | Tagged: Alice Cooper, Allman Brothers Band, Bobby Darin, Carole King, Don Kirshner, Gerry Goffin, Kansas, Kiss, Neil Diamond, Neil Sedaka, Paul Shaffer, Rush, The Eagles, The Monkees, The Ramones | 2 Comments »
Posted by themusicsover on December 31, 2010
Michael “Rudy” Guess
February 27, 1953 – December 31, 2010
Rudy Guess was a talented guitarist, producer, and composer who is perhaps best known as the longtime touring guitarist for Carole King. He also helped produce many of King’s studio recordings. As a composer, Guess’ music has been featured on such television shows as Extreme Makeover, Law & Order, and The Practice. Rudy Guess was 57 when he passed away on December 31, 2010. Cause of death was not immediately released.
Thanks To Marc Luzzatto for the help
Posted in Musician, Producer, Singer | Tagged: Carole King, Rudy Guess | 1 Comment »