Cynthia Weil, who teamed with husband Barry Mann to write such pop classics as “You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feelin’,” “On Broadway,” “We Gotta Get Out of This Place” and dozens of other hits for the likes of the Drifters, the Ronettes, Dolly Parton and B.J. Thomas, died Thursday. She was 82.
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.”
Weil and Mann, who were married for 62 years, 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 also received the inaugural National Academy of Songwriter Life Achievement Award and were featured characters in the Tony-winning musical Beautiful: The Carole King Musical.
Among the other stone-classic Top 10 hits that Weil co-penned are Parton’s “Here You Come Again,” the Ronettes’ “Walking in the Rain,” Paul Revere and the Raiders’ “Kicks” and the Righteous Brothers “(You’re My) Soul and Inspiration.”
That latter song was the Phil Spector-produced follow-up to the Righteous Brothers’ signature hit “You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feelin’,” which was the most-played song of the 20th century.
Weil and Mann met while working at the “Brill Building” in Manhattan and decided to collaborate. While there they became friends with — and chief rivals of — Carole King and Gerry Goffin, and the couples churned out memorable monster hits for years.
Their first success was with Tony Orlando’s “Bless You,” which made the Top 15 in 1961. Later that year they hit again with the Crystals’ “Uptown” and had their first Top 10 record with Paul Petersen’s “My Dad” in 1962. The following year brought more Top 10 success with Eydie Gorme’s “Blame It on the Bossa Nova” and the Drifters’ unforgettable “On Broadway,” which scatting guitarist George Benson remade in 1978 and hit No. 7 on the Billboard Hot 100. Neil Young also memorably covered the song on his 1989 album Freedom.
MORE TO COME…