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Cynthia Weil, Grammy Winning Lyricist, Dead At 82

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NEW YORK — Grammy-winning songwriter Cynthia Weil, who co-wrote dozens of popular songs with her husband, Barry Mann, including “You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feeling,” “On Broadway,” “Walking in the Rain,” and many others, has passed away at age 82.

Weil passed away on Thursday at her home in Beverly Hills, California, “surrounded by her family,” according to Weil’s daughter Dr. Jenn Mann. The couple’s sole child, Mann, chose not to give a cause of death.

Barry Mann and Cynthia Weil married in 1961 and were among the most popular music-successful duos. They were part of a unique group assembled by music moguls Don Kirshner and Al Nevins and based in Manhattan’s Brill Building district, close to Times Square. The Brill Building song factory produced many of the biggest singles of the 1960s and beyond with hit-making pairings like Carole King, Gerry Goffin, Jeff Barry, and Ellie Greenwich.

Jenn Mann remarked, “I grew up around a lot of music and two wonderful, smart, creative geniuses. “My parents were each other’s greatest musical influences. When things were wonderful, people had each other, and when things weren’t so good, people had their music, according to my mother.

On songs for the Ronettes (“Walking in the Rain”), the Crystals (“He’s Sure the Boy I Love”), and other acts, Weil and Mann worked closely with producer Phil Spector. They also wrote hits for everyone from Dolly Parton to Hanson. James Horner and his team’s song “Somewhere Out There,” created for the “An American Tail” soundtrack, won Grammy Awards in 1987 for best song and best song for a Movie or Television and received nominations for an Academy Award and a Golden Globe. They collaborated on writing the Linda Ronstadt and Aaron Neville duet “Don’t Know Much,” which peaked at number five and won the Grammy for best pop performance in 1990.

“You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feeling,” an anthem of “blue-eyed soul” composed by Spector as if scoring a tragedy and performed by the Righteous Brothers with frantic passion, is their most well-known song and a piece of history in general. In 1965, “You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feeling” was the number-one song on the charts and was covered by several other musicians. No other song was played more frequently on radio and Television in the 20th century, according to Broadcast Music Inc. (BMI).

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Bill Medley and Bobby Hatfield’s reactions to Weil and Mann’s debut performance of “You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feeling” for the Righteous Brothers were “dead silence.”

She said to Parade Magazine 2015 that Bill had responded, “Sounds good for The Everly Brothers, not the Righteous Brothers.” “We said, ‘Oh, God.’ What should I do while the large guy is singing? Bobby then asked. Spector’s Phil said, “You can go to the bank.”

When the Beatles became popular in the middle of the 1960s, many of Weil’s contemporaries struggled, but she persisted in scoring hits, occasionally with Mann or with collaborators like Michael Masser, David Foster, and John Williams, with whom she co-wrote “For Always” for the soundtrack to Steven Spielberg’s “A.I. Artificial Intelligence.” Weil contributed to the songs “Here You Come Again,” Parton’s pop breakthrough, “If Ever You’re In My Arms Again” by Peabo Bryson, “Just Once” by James Ingram, “He’s So Shy” by the Pointer Sisters, and “Running With the Night” by Lionel Richie. She again made the top 10 in 1997 with Hanson’s “I Will Come to You.”

“When songs are successful, they’re like little stories. They have an introduction, a middle, and a conclusion. Weil, who eventually published the novel “I’m Glad I Did,” told Parade that the song “paints a picture of the human condition” and makes you feel how the person singing it is feeling.

Her abilities extended far beyond love songs. She and Mann co-wrote “Kicks,” a success for Paul Revere and the Raiders in 1966, one of rock’s earliest anti-drug songs. She also had a talent for writing lyrics full of desire and aspiration, as evidenced by the song “On Broadway” and its iconic opening line, “They say the neon lights are bright/on Broadway.” With their account of working-class angst, “We’ve Got to Get Out of This Place,” The Animals enjoyed success. The 1961 hit song “Uptown” by The Crystals dealt with race and class in a way that wasn’t frequently heard in the early days of rock.

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____

He is simply one of a million males downtown.

He receives no breaks.

And he takes everything they have to offer.

Because he needs to live.

He then moves uptown, nevertheless.

Where he can proudly raise his head

He is aware that I am nearby in Uptown.

_____

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Weil and Mann were introduced by King at the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame ceremony in 2010.

Weil and Mann were introduced by King at the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame ceremony in 2010, and they were inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1987. Mann and Weil played minor roles in the popular King musical “Beautiful,” which debuted on Broadway in 2013 and chronicled the passionate camaraderie and competition between the two married couples. “They Wrote That?” by Mann and Weil was performed for a limited time in 2004.

“Cynthia’s high level of professionalism improved all of us as songwriters. The line “Just a little lovin’ early in the mornin’ beats a cup of coffee for startin’ out the day” is one of my favorite Cynthia lyrics; King posted on her social media pages on Friday, quoting the Mann-Weil song “Just a Little Lovin’,” which has been performed by Dusty Springfield and others.

If we’re lucky, we’ll know this to be true, but she composed it — and in the following line, she made the words “morning” and “yawning” rhyme. I hope Cynthia Weil’s lyrics will live on and communicate to future generations.

Weil, a native of New York City and the daughter of Jewish immigrants from Eastern Europe was trained in dance and piano as a young girl. At Sarah Lawrence College, she concentrated on theatre, but an agent persuaded her to attempt music. At age 20, she began working for the publishing house of “Guys and Dolls” composer Frank Loesser, where she met the man who would become her husband.

Barry walked in to play Teddy Randazzo a song as she was writing it, she said to the Los Angeles Times in 2016. Teddy Randazzo was a young Italian boy singer who was the Frankie Avalon of his time. “I questioned the front desk clerk, ‘Who is this guy? Has he ever been with a girl? ‘He’s signed to a friend of mine, Don Kirshner, and if I call Donny, maybe you can go up there to show him your songs and meet Barry again,’ she suggested. So she took that action. That’s what I did as well. He had no chance at all.

SOURCE – (AP)

Kiara Grace is a staff writer at VORNews, a reputable online publication. Her writing focuses on technology trends, particularly in the realm of consumer electronics and software. With a keen eye for detail and a knack for breaking down complex topics, Kiara delivers insightful analyses that resonate with tech enthusiasts and casual readers alike. Her articles strike a balance between in-depth coverage and accessibility, making them a go-to resource for anyone seeking to stay informed about the latest innovations shaping our digital world.

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Rock Band Cage The Elephant Emerge From Loss And Hospitalization With New Album ‘Neon Pill’

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NEW YORK — To say Cage the Elephant’s latest album had a rocky start would be an understatement. The band coped with loved ones’ deaths, the pandemic, and its lead singer’s arrest and illness.

“It’s no secret that I had a medical crisis,” Matt Shultz tells The Associated Press from Nashville on the eve of the Friday release of the 12-track album “Neon Pill.” “I am fully recovered. It does leave a scar, but it is one that can be ignored.”

The Kentucky-born singer-songwriter was charged with criminal possession of firearms in January 2023 after police discovered his guns inside his Bowery Hotel room in Lower Manhattan.

Shultz claims that in the aftermath, he discovered that for the past three years or more, he had been experiencing a negative reaction to a set of prescribed medications (Shultz did not specify which), resulting in episodes of psychosis.

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Rock Band Cage The Elephant Emerge From Loss And Hospitalization With New Album ‘Neon Pill’

“It’s shocking how night and day the difference is from being on whatever medication is causing psychosis and being off of it,” he continues. “Once I got off the drug, I returned to my normal self. And that was strange because it felt like someone else had taken over your life.”

That so-called other person had contributed to the five-year recording of “Neon Pill,” and it was up to Shultz — who was hospitalized for two months and underwent around six months of outpatient therapy — to unravel the music.

“I went back to the lyrics, obviously to finish the album, and it was like reading the words of a totally different person and trying to decode what they meant,” he recalls. “A lot of it was going back and trying to find the sentiment of what I was trying to communicate.”

Shultz escaped jail time after pleading guilty to three firearms offenses.

“I’m so blessed it wasn’t worse than it was,” adds the man. “And grateful that I received the medical attention I required. I’m extremely fortunate to be surrounded by my family and my wife. God got me through it. I’d be dead numerous times over.

“Neon Pill” reunites the band with producer John Hill, who worked on their previous 2019 Grammy-winning album, “Social Cues.” It presents a kaleidoscope of rock, from the strutting glam of “Ball and Chain” to the piano ballad of “Out Loud” and the breezy alt-rock of “Float Into the Sky.” One song, “Rainbow,” is infectiously poppy, as if Cage covered a Dead or Alive tune.

“It was like a culmination of all the Cage records combined,” claims Shultz. “John Hill had a greater impact on this album, without a doubt.” Not that he didn’t impact ‘Social Cues,’ but with this one, he pushed us harder to go within ourselves and compose the greatest material we could.

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Rock Band Cage The Elephant Emerge From Loss And Hospitalization With New Album ‘Neon Pill’

The album explores Shultz’s experiences, including the lyrics “Double-crossed by a neon pill/Like a loaded gun, my love,
I lost control of the wheel.” The song is the band’s 11th number-one hit on Billboard’s Alternative Airplay list.

“We definitely felt like that was the title track once everything came to be,” adds Shultz, who is joined by his guitarist brother Brad, bassist Daniel Tichenor, drummer Jared Champion, guitarist Nick Bockrath, and pianist Matthan Minster.

Two songs are about Matt and Brad’s father, Brad Shultz Sr., one of which is “Out Loud.” It is about the day the older Shultz and his father had a violent dispute, and their father fled to Florida, hitching the entire way. After a year, the younger man felt sorrow and created an apology song, which he hitchhiked back to Kentucky to play for his father.

Matt Shultz says the narrative inspired him, “so I wrote a song about the song he wrote.” The lyrics to that song are: “Man, I really messed up now/ Clipped those wings and I came back home/Tried my best just to carry on.”

The album’s final tune, “Over Your Shoulder,” laments his father’s death in 2020. The Shultz brothers inherited milk crates containing hundreds of their father’s tunes on ancient cassette recordings. A new original Cage song appeared, similar to their father’s style, with the lyrics: “Don’t look back over your shoulder/I’m not saying don’t ask/When it feels like it gets colder/Every season will pass.”

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Rock Band Cage The Elephant Emerge From Loss And Hospitalization With New Album ‘Neon Pill’

Matt Shultz thinks the entire record is a departure for a band that had previously worn its influences on their sleeves.

“We’d be in the studio, trying to replicate and emulate. But with this record, I believe we were simply relaxed into ourselves and striving to create something we loved.”

SOURCE – (AP)

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Lainey Wilson Wins Big At The 2024 Academy Of Country Music Awards, Including The Top Honor

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It was Lainey Wilson’s night in a variety of ways. At the 2024 Academy of Country Music Awards, she won Female Artist of the Year as well as Entertainer of the Year.

Wilson began her address with, “I’ve been in Nashville for 13 years doing this.” “Everybody in this category has loved on me and believed on me,” she said. “And I love y’all for that.”

Miranda Lambert, awarded Entertainer of the Year in 2022, is one of only a few women to have won the top prize. Carrie Underwood and Thomas Rhett tied for the title in 2020, marking the first tie in history and the first time a woman had won the category since Taylor Swift in 2012.

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Lainey Wilson Wins Big At The 2024 Academy Of Country Music Awards, Including The Top Honor

Wilson also opened the 59th annual ACM Awards with a cover of Little Texas’ “God Blessed Texas,” seamlessly transitioning into her new hit, “Hang Tight Honey.” Clay Walker and Randy Travis then presented Jordan Davis the song of the year for his popular country radio smash “Next Thing You Know.”

In his victory speech, he remarked, “First and foremost, I want to thank the fans for their love of this song.” “I love songwriting because of songs that won song of the year, so to be holding this right now is crazy.”

Wilson won the year’s music event, as did Jelly Roll for his hit “Save Me.”

“No pun intended, but seriously, this song saved me,” Jelly Roll stated during his address. “I thought I would die and go to jail,” he added, getting upset — but instead, he celebrated winning an ACM award

Reba McEntire hosted the American Country Music Awards, which were held at the Ford Center at The Star in Frisco, Texas, just north of Dallas.

In one of the show’s most anticipated performances, Jason Aldean lit up the stage with a touching homage to the late Toby Keith.

He offered the audience a moving, acoustic version of Keith’s famous “Should’ve Been a Cowboy.” They sang along, and Keith’s family watched from the audience.

Keith has won 14 ACM Awards in his career, including the title of Entertainer of the Year twice. He died in February at the age of 62 after being diagnosed with stomach cancer.

Chris Stapleton won both Album and Male Artist of the Year. “There’s so many great guys in that category, and I’m just happy to be included in this company,” he stated in his acceptance speech.

And Dua Lipa joined him as a special guest when it was time to perform his brand-new single, “Think I’m in Love with You.”

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Lainey Wilson Wins Big At The 2024 Academy Of Country Music Awards, Including The Top Honor

It wasn’t the only surprise: Post Malone dropped a brand-new song, “Never Love You Again,” which bled into his massive new single with Morgan Wallen, “I Had Some Help.” Wallen didn’t perform.

Instead, McEntire later joined Post Malone to perform a brief duet of the Allman Brothers Band’s “Ramblin’ Man” in honor of Dickey Betts, who died last month. He was eighty.

Earlier in the evening, Luke Combs, the night’s most nominated artist with eight, won single of the year for his cover of Tracy Chapman’s “Fast Car.” Last year, Chapman’s 1988 ballad won Song of the Year at the Country Music Awards for Combs’ cover, becoming her the first Black songwriter to do so.

Dan Shay and Old Dominion won awards for duo and group of the year, respectively.

Performances came fast and furious: Jelly Roll Morton started with a thumping rendition of his new song “Liar,” followed closely by Kelsea Ballerini and Noah Kahan, who turned her song “Mountain with a View” into his viral hit “Stick Season.”

Tigirlily Gold sang “I Tried A Ring On,” Texas-born Cody Johnson performed “Dirt Cheap,” and Miranda Lambert introduced her new track “Wranglers.”

Kane Brown sang a beautiful cover of “Georgia on My Mind.” Thomas Rhett sang “Beautiful As You,” and Blake Shelton and Gwen Stefani performed “Purple Irises” on the ACM stage.

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AP – VOR News Image

Lainey Wilson Wins Big At The 2024 Academy Of Country Music Awards, Including The Top Honor

Park McCollum played his smash “Burn It Down,” new male artist of the year Nate Smith and pop-punk superstar Avril Lavigne performed their new song “Bulletproof,” and presenter McEntire finished out the program with her new track “I Can’t.”

The ACM Awards were broadcast live on Prime Video and the Amazon Music channel on Twitch Live.

SOURCE – (AP)

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Scottie Scheffler Arrested Outside PGA Championship, Then Returns And Climbs Leaderboard

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Darlington said police pulled Scheffler out of the car, pushed him up against the car and immediately placed him in handcuffs.

“Scheffler was then walked over to the police car, placed in the back, in handcuffs, very stunned about what was happening, looked toward me as he was in those handcuffs and said, ‘Please help me,’” Darlington said. “He very clearly did not know what was happening in the situation. It moved very quickly, very rapidly, very aggressively.”

Scheffler was released by police and returned to the course at 9:12 a.m. Around 9:30 a.m., he arrived at the practice area to the cheers of fans; one yelled “Free Scottie!” and more followed later wearing “Free Scottie” T-shirts.

Scheffler seemed normal, relaxed, sharing a few laughs on the driving range.

“I was never angry. I was just in shock,” Scheffler said. “I was shaking the whole time. I was shaking for like an hour. It was definitely a new feeling for me.”

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Scottie Scheffler Arrested Outside PGA Championship, Then Returns And Climbs Leaderboard

He could see from a TV in the jail that tee times were pushed back 1 hour20 minutes because of the traffic situation, and realized when an officer knocked on the door and said, “Let’s go,” that he had a chance to play.

He made birdie on his first hole of the day after sticking his approach shot to 3 feet.

Darlington, the ESPN reporter, said police were initially unsure who Scheffler was. He said an officer asked him to leave, and when he identified himself as being with the media, he was told, “There’s nothing you can do. He’s going to jail.”

Darlington said another police officer later approached with a notepad and asked if he knew the name of the person they put in handcuffs.

Scheffler said he never told police who he was except to say, “I’m sorry, I’m just trying to get to my tee time.”

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AP – VOR News Image

Scottie Scheffler Arrested Outside PGA Championship, Then Returns And Climbs Leaderboard

Louisville police have attracted negative national attention in recent years after the fatal shooting of Breonna Taylor in 2020 and a federal investigation into its policing practices.

A Department of Justice report released last year said Louisville officers use excessive force and conduct searches based on invalid warrants. The report said Black motorists in Louisville were more likely to be searched during traffic stops, and officers used neck restraints, police dogs and Tasers against people who posed no imminent threat.

Taylor, a 26-year-old Black woman, was shot by officers who had come to her apartment with a warrant that federal officials later said was falsified.

PGA of America, which runs the PGA Championship, offered sympathies for Mills’ family and said, “As it relates to the incident involving Scottie Scheffler, we are fully cooperating as local authorities review what took place.”

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AP – VOR News Image

Scottie Scheffler Arrested Outside PGA Championship, Then Returns And Climbs Leaderboard

Scheffler has won four of his last five tournaments, including his second Masters title. He has been home in Dallas the last three weeks, waiting for the birth of his first child, a son born May 8.

Scheffler is trying to become only the fifth player since 1960 to win the first two majors of the year.

SOURCE – (AP)

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