who wrote classic pop songs like “Raindrops Keep Fallin’ on My Head,” has died at the age of 94.
A family member told CNN that Burt Bacharach had died. He was a well-known composer and songwriter who wrote many mellow pop hits from the 1950s to the 1980s, such as “Raindrops Keep Fallin’ on My Head,” “(They Long to Be) Close to You,” and the theme from the movie “Arthur.”
Burt Bacharach Was 94
Bacharach was one of the most important people in pop music in the 20th century. He had big hits in many different styles, from Top 40 to country to rhythm and blues to film scores. He wrote hits for Dusty Springfield, Dionne Warwick, Tom Jones, Neil Diamond, the Carpenters, and Christopher Cross, among others.
Many of his songs were put in the category of “easy listening,” which is a soft, old-fashioned style of music with few rough edges. Most of them were very different from rock and roll, funk, disco, and other popular styles at the time.
Still, Bacharach and Hal David, who worked together for a long time, wrote many of the most catchy songs of the time. Many of them, like “Say a Little Prayer,” “Walk on By,” and “Do You Know the Way to San Jose,” became hits for Warwick, who was one of the best-selling female singers of the 1960s.
Bachrach also wrote the huge hits “Magic Moments” by Perry Como, “Baby It’s You” by the Shirelles, “What’s New Pussycat?” by Tom Jones, and “What the World Needs Now Is Love” by Jackie DeShannon. “This Guy’s in Love with You” by Herb Alpert, “Heartlight” by Neil Diamond, and “On My Own” by Patti Labelle and Michael McDonald.
“That’s What Friends Are For,” a charity song he made with Dionne Warwick, Elton John, Gladys Knight, and Stevie Wonder, was one of his biggest and most important hits. It topped the charts in 1986 and raised millions of dollars for AIDS research.
Bacharach told NPR’s Scott Simon in 2013: “Never be afraid of something you can whistle.”
During his long career, Bachrach won almost every major music award, including six Grammys, three Oscars, and, with Hal David, the Library of Congress’s Gershwin Prize for Popular Song. In 2008, the Grammys said that he was the best composer still alive.
Thomas Burgess, a British musician, tweeted a tribute to him on Thursday.
Burgess wrote that this was “one of the best songwriting legacies in the history of ever.” “Goodbye, Burt Bacharach. You were a king.