Feb. 11, 1939 Brooklyn Kings County (Brooklyn) New York, USA
Jun. 19, 2014 Los Angeles Los Angeles County California, USA
Songwriter, Lyricist. He is best remembered for his international pop hits of the 1960s, including the US No.1 hits "Will You Love Me Tomorrow," "Take Good Care of My Baby," "The Loco-Motion," and "Go Away Little Girl," which he co-wrote with his wife Carole King. After graduating from Brooklyn Technical High School he enlisted in the US Marine Corps Reserve and was accepted into the US Naval Academy at Annapolis, Maryland. He resigned after a year and attended Queens College in Queens, New York to study chemistry and there he met Carol Klein, who had started writing songs under the name Carole King. They began a collaboration on songwriting, with him composing the lyrics and King writing the music and started a romantic relationship. They married in August 1959 when she became pregnant and he began working with a chemicals manufacturer, and wrote the lyrics for Carole King's 1959 single "Oh Neil", an answer song to her friend Neil Sedaka's "Oh! Carol". While it was not a hit, the couple both secured contracts to write songs professionally at Aldon Music Publishing Company. He and King soon established themselves as a successful writing team of the 1960s. Their breakthrough hit was "Will You Love Me Tomorrow", for which he wrote the lyrics, recorded by the Shirelles, and went to No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 in January 1961. Their other hit songs included "Take Good Care of My Baby" (a hit for Bobby Vee), "Halfway to Paradise" (recorded by Tony Orlando and Billy Fury), "The Loco-Motion" (recorded by Little Eva, and later Grand Funk Railroad and Kylie Minogue), "Go Away Little Girl" (recorded by Steve Lawrence, and later Donny Osmond), "It Might as Well Rain Until September" (recorded by Carole King), "One Fine Day" (recorded by The Chiffons), "Up on the Roof" (recorded by The Drifters), "I'm into Something Good" (recorded by Herman's Hermits), "Don't Bring Me Down" (recorded by The Animals), "Oh No Not My Baby" (recorded by Maxine Brown, and later Rod Stewart), "Goin' Back" (recorded by Dusty Springfield and The Byrds), "(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman" (recorded by Aretha Franklin and later Carole King), and "Pleasant Valley Sunday" (recorded by The Monkees). He started taking LSD and mescaline which ultimately contributed to his divorce with King 1969 but they continued to work together. He suffered from mental illness following ingestion of LSD, eventually undergoing treatment with lithium and electroshock therapy, and was diagnosed with manic depression. His drug use greatly affected his health, and he was hospitalized for a time. He also worked successfully with other composers in the early 1960s, including Barry Mann ("Who Put the Bomp (in the Bomp, Bomp, Bomp)") and Jack Keller ("Run to Him"). He released an unsuccessful solo album in 1973 ("It Ain't Exactly Entertainment") and began working with other composers, including Russ Titelman, Barry Goldberg, and then Michael Masser. In 1976 he and Masser won an Academy Award nomination for the theme to the film "Mahogany" (sung by Diana Ross) which reached No. 1 that year, and also wrote "Saving All My Love for You", a worldwide hit for Whitney Houston, "Tonight, I Celebrate My Love," (a duet single by Peabo Bryson and Roberta Flack) and "Nothing's Gonna Change My Love for You" (sung by Goerge Benson and Glenn Medeiros). He and Masser also received a Golden Globe nomination for "So Sad the Song" from the 1976 Gladys Knight film "Pipe Dreams." In 1987 he released his second solo album "Back Room Blood." During his career he wrote over 50 US Top 40 hits, including eight chart-toppers, and 21 UK Top 40 hits. He died at his home from natural causes at the age of 75. In 1987 he was inducted with Carole King into the Songwriters Hall of Fame and 1990 he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. (bio by: William Bjornstad)
Burial: Cremated, Other.
Maintained by: Find A Grave Originally Created by: Pat McArron Record added: Jun 19, 2014
Find A Grave Memorial# 131570593
Added by: Anonymous
Added by: Anonymous
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