Friday, May 01, 2015

Obituary: Ben E. King

Singer Ben E. King, who began his careers singing with the Drifters but is best remembered as a solo artist with hits like the following tune, has died.

King was 76 years old.

He recorded the song way back in 1961. It became a smash hit and was his signature tune.


Pay dispute
Born Benjamin Earl Nelson, he initially joined a doo-wop group called The Five Crowns, who became The Drifters after that group's manager fired the band's previous members.

He co-wrote and sang on the band's single There Goes My Baby, which reached number two in the US in 1959.

But the group members were paid just $100 per week by their manager and, after a request for a pay rise was turned down, the singer decided to go it alone. In the process, he adopted the surname King.

His first solo hit, in 1961, was Spanish Harlem, which was followed by Stand By Me.

Another obit is here.

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