Songwriter Sid Tepper, best known for his work writing songs for Elvis Presley, died on Friday (April 24) of natural causes. He was 96.
Tepper’s publicist confirmed the news to Billboard, adding that he died at his home on Williams Island in Miami Beach, Florida surrounded by his family.
Tepper wrote 45 songs for Presley, but also wrote tracks for other artists including Frank Sinatra, Jeff Beck, The Beatles, Perry Como, Andy Williams, Ray Charles, Louie Armstrong, Wayne Newton, Robert Goulet, Nancy Wilson, Eartha Kitt and more.
Some of his most well-known songs include “The Lady Loves Me” performed by Presley and Ann-Margret as well as “The Naughty Lady of Shady Lane,” “Kiss of Fire,” “G.I. Blues,” “Red Roses For A Blue Lady,” and “Don’t Come Running Back To Me.”
A vet of WWII where he served for the Special Services performing for the troops, he joined ASCAP in 1947. He won a BMI Award for 1 million plays of Georgia Gibbs’ “Kiss of Fire.” Additionally he won a Country Music Award for Eddie Arnold’s version of “Red Roses For A Blue Lady.” In 2002, he was honored in Memphis for his work with Presley.
Tepper was born on June 25, 1918. His wife, Lillian, died 10 years ago. He is survived by 5 children (Susan Tepper-Kopacz, Michelle Tepper-Kapit, Brian Tepper, Warren Tepper and Jackie Tepper), 7 grandchildren, and 3 great grandchildren.
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Sid Tepper Dies at 96; Wrote Songs for Sinatra, Elvis, the Beatles
Sid Tepper, who wrote over 300 songs that were recorded by artists including Frank Sinatra and Elvis Presley (45 songs), died April 24 of natural causes at his home in Miami Beach, Florida. He was 96.
Tepper also wrote songs for Carl Perkins, Jeff Beck, Herman’s Hermits, the Dave Clark Five, the Beatles, Perry Como, Andy Williams, Ray Charles, Louie Armstrong, Cliff Richard, Eddie Arnold, Marty Robbins, Slim Whitman, Bert Kaempfert, Wayne Newton, Robert Goulet, Dean Martin, Dinah Shore, Nancy Wilson, Connie Francis, Sarah Vaughn, Guy Lombardo, Eartha Kitt, the Ink Spots, Louis Prima, Arthur Godfrey, Tommy Dorsey and Lawrence Welk.
Among the songwriter’s hits were “Red Roses for a Blue Lady,” “The Naughty Lady of Shady Lane,” “Kiss of Fire,” “Say Something Sweet to Your Sweetheart,” “Kewpie Doll,” “G.I. Blues,” “Suzy Snowflake,” “Travelin’ Light,” “Puppet on a String,” “Stairway of Love,” “Nuttin’ for Christmas,” “The Woodchuck Song,” “Glad All Over,” Don’t Come Running Back to Me,” “New Orleans” and the Elvis-Ann-Margret duet “The Lady Loves Me.”
Tepper and his writing partner [Roy C. Bennett] adjusted well to the advent of rock ‘n’ roll: In 1961, their song “The Young Ones” was instrumental in boosting the U.K. career of Cliff Richard, for whom they wrote 21 compositions. They went on to write 45 songs for Elvis Presley for his movies, including “It’s a Wonderful World” from the movie “Roustabout.”
Variety | By Variety Staff
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Sid Tepper (June 25, 1918 – April 24, 2015) was an American songwriter, best known for his collaborations with Roy C. Bennett, which spawned several hits for Elvis Presley. Between 1945 and 1970, Tepper and Bennett published over 300 songs.
As a youth, Tepper’s family moved to Brooklyn, where Tepper met his future musical collaborator, Roy C. Bennett. Their first hit was “Red Roses for a Blue Lady” (1948), recorded by Guy Lombardo and his Royal Canadians. Over the next 22 years, the songwriting team wrote for Tony Bennett, Rosemary Clooney, Peggy Lee, Frank Sinatra, Sarah Vaughn, Dean Martin, and many more.
Songwriter Sid Tepper Remembers writing for the King
Sid Tepper wrote 45 songs for Elvis, and hundreds more for other artists. Unless you’re talking about Irving Berlin or Rodgers and Hammerstein, songwriters generally don’t have household names.
Take Sid Tepper, who wrote more than 300 songs recorded by some of the greatest artists of all time, including 45 hits for Elvis Presley. Only the most obsessive fans have ever heard of the guy.
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Born in New York in 1918, Tepper described his songwriting genius as something that came naturally. ‘It’s nothing that can be taught’, he said. ‘You’re born with it’.
Tepper’s success began during World War II. While in the Army, he often fooled around singing and writing songs. Eventually, others recognized his talent and he made it into the Special Services Entertainment Division. ‘I wrote a show and we toured it around to all the army camps’, Tepper said. Sydney Mills of Mills Music was at one of those shows and liked what he heard. ‘After this mess [war] is over, come see me and we’ll see what we can do’, Mills told him.
Tepper took him up on the offer, and in 1946, he and writing partner Roy C. Bennett became staff song writers for Mills at $100 per week. It was a great deal of money at the time, Tepper said, and life was great.
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Lots more to this article – very informative!
By: Ben Torter | Source: The Sun Post | June 14, 2008
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‘Louie Louie’ Singer Jack Ely Dies in Oregon at 71
PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Jack Ely, the singer known for “Louie Louie,” the low-budget recording that became one the most famous songs of the 20th century, died at his home in Redmond, Oregon, after a long battle with an illness. He was 71.
His son, Sean Ely, confirmed the death Tuesday.
“Because of his religious beliefs, we’re not even sure what (the illness) was,” he said.
Jack Ely was original member of the Kingsmen, a band formed in 1959 that mostly performed cover versions of songs. Four years later, the group recorded “Louie Louie” at a studio in its home city of Portland. According to lore, it cost $36.
The song was written in the mid-1950s by Richard Berry, a Los Angeles musician with roots in doo-wop music. As he recorded it in 1957, the tune had a calypso feel and described a patron telling the barkeep he had to go, to get back to his girl waiting across the sea in Jamaica.
“Louie Louie” has been covered hundreds of times, a three-chord, garage-band classic anybody could play soon after picking up an electric guitar.
Ely and the Kingsmen picked it up along with other Northwest figures such as Rockin’ Robin Roberts and Paul Revere. The Kingsmen’s version was recorded in 1963 and is the definitive version, going from cult classic to rock-and-roll standard. It has inspired more than a thousand cover versions and there’s no reliable estimate for how many times it’s been drunkenly sung at parties.
In addition to the song’s fame, Ely’s incoherent singing also made it one of the most misunderstood. The FBI was so mystified by the hard-to-understand lyrics that it conducted an investigation into whether the song was obscene. They found it to be “unintelligible at any speed.”
Over the years, Ely and other band members attributed the indistinct lyrics to the microphone suspended from the ceiling, forcing Ely to shout up at it. Sean Ely said his father got “quite the kick” out the FBI’s 455-page investigative report. He said his father certainly knew the words, and wasn’t just slurring nonsense.
“Right off his mouth, my father would say: ‘We were initially just going to record the song as an instrumental and at the last minute I decided I’d sing it. It’s all of this is in a 10-by-10 room with one microphone. I’m standing on my tippy toes yelling into the microphone: Louie Louie! Louie Louie! We gotta go!’”
Ely had a falling out with the band shortly after the song was recorded. He later trained horses in Central Oregon and, according to his son, was content with his legacy as a one-hit wonder — a massive one-hit wonder, to be precise.
“He wanted to try on different occasions to pursue other endeavors in the music industry, but I think when it was all done and said he was pretty happy that he did ‘Louie Louie.’”
Associated Press | by Steven DuBois
Jack Ely dies
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Suzanne Crough of The Partridge Family Dies
Suzanne J. Crough (March 6, 1963 – April 27, 2015) was an American child actress best known for her role as Tracy Partridge on The Partridge Family.
On The Partridge Family, Crough played Tracy Partridge, the youngest Partridge sibling, who played the tambourine. After The Partridge Family, she made several TV movies and made guest appearances on television shows, including Mulligan’s Stew. Her last credited on-screen role was “Kate” in the 1980 TV movie Children of Divorce.
Crough graduated from Los Angeles Pierce College and until 1993 owned and operated a bookstore. On March 2, 2010, during a reunion interview with several co-stars from The Partridge Family on The Today Show, she stated she was a manager at an Office Max in Bullhead City, Arizona.
Crough died suddenly at her home in Laughlin, Nevada on April 27, 2015, at the age of 52. She was the mother of two daughters, and she and her husband, William Condray, had planned on celebrating their 30th anniversary in July 2015. The cause of death has not yet been determined.
Suzanne Crough dies
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Other Notable Musicians’ Deaths…
28: Batyrkhan Shukenov (ru), 52, Kazakh and Russian singer (A-Studio), heart attack.
27: Suzanne Crough, 52, American actress (The Partridge Family); Jack Ely, 71, American singer (“Louie Louie”); Guy LeBlanc, 54, Canadian keyboard player (Nathan Mahl, Camel), kidney cancer; Rolf Smedvig, 62, American classical trumpeter, heart attack.
24: Sid Tepper, 96, American songwriter (“Red Roses for a Blue Lady”).
23: E. M. Subramaniam, 67, Indian Carnatic percussionist.