Legendary hit songwriter Cynthia Weil dies aged 82

Cynthia Weil and Barry Mann

Songwriter Cynthia Weil has died aged 82. She wrote decades worth of hit songs alongside her husband Barry Mann, that ranged from ballads to rock anthems.

From The Animals We Got to Get Out of This Place, to The Righteous Brothers You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feeling to Dolly Parton’s Here You Come Again and Lionel Richie’s Running with the Night, Cynthia Weil was a successful songwriter through the decades.

Eydie Gormè’s Blame It On The Bossa Nova was another of her successes, Aaron Neville and Linda Ronstadt scored a hit with Don’t Know Much, while I’m Gonna Be Strong was recorded by Gene Pitney, and later Cyndi Lauper.  

Just a Little Lovin’ (Early in the Morning) was recorded by everyone from Dusty Springfield to Carmen McCrae, Barbra Streisand, Bobby Vinton and Shelby Lynne. On Broadway was a hit for The Drifters and later George Benson. Saturday Night at the Movies was another Drifters hit that Weill penned.

Mama Cass recorded Make Your Own Kind of Music, Hanson worked with Weil and Mann on I Will Come to You, while The Pointer Sisters had a hit with Baby Come and Get It and He’s So Shy. 

Weil’s daughter, Dr. Jenn Mann, said via publicist Sarah Schlief: “My mother, Cynthia Weil, was the greatest mother, grandmother and wife our family could ever ask for. She was my best friend, confidante and my partner in crime and an idol and trailblazer for women in music.”

Most of Weil’s work was in collaboration with her husband Barry Mann, the pair met working in the famed Brill Building in New York. They won a pair of Grammys and were Oscar-nominated for Best Song for Somewhere Out There, the Linda Ronstadt-James Ingram duet from An American Tail.

The pair received the inaugural National Academy of Songwriter Life Achievement Award, were inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1987 and earned the Ahmet Ertegun Award from the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2010.

Tributes to Weil have been posted by her contemporaries and admirers.

“I am very saddened to hear about the passing of Cynthia Weil. We were very close during our time together at The Brill Building. It’s a great loss to American Pop Music, as she wrote some of the standards that will live on forever.” Neil Sedaka said in a social media post.

KISS singer Paul Stanley, the Beach Boys’ Brian Wilson and John Oates from Hall & Oates also praised the late songwriter.

OIP Staff, image: Cynthia Weil and Barry Mann at the Opening of Beautiful – The Carole King Musical at the Stephen Sondheim Theatre, Broadway NYC on January 12th 2014.  

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