Music in the News

benekingR&B and soul singer Ben E King, best known for the classic song Stand By Me, has died at the age of 76.

King started his career in the late 1950s with The Drifters, singing hits including There Goes My Baby and Save The Last Dance For Me.

After going solo, he hit the US top five with Stand By Me in 1961.

It returned to the charts in the 1980s, including a three-week spell at number one in the UK following its use in the film of the same name and a TV advert.

King’s other hits included Spanish Harlem, Amor, Don’t Play That Song (You Lied) and Supernatural Thing – Part I.

Jack Ely dies at age 71: Louie Louie

jackelyWhen he stood on his toes, leaned his head back, and began to incoherently shout ‘‘Louie Louie’’ into a microphone 52 years ago, Jack Ely had no idea he was creating a rock ’n’ roll classic.

Nor, for that matter, did the lead singer of the Kingsmen know he was laying the groundwork for one of the first federal investigations into dirty song lyrics, while creating a tune so memorable that everybody from the Beach Boys to Nirvana would later record it.

Mr. Ely, who died Tuesday at age 71, had simply walked into a tiny Portland recording studio with his band one day to cut an instrumental version of a song that had been a hit on Pacific Northwest jukeboxes — one that kids could dance to.


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