‘Stand By Me’ Singer Ben E. King Dead at 76
R&B and soul legend Ben E King, best known for the iconic “Stand By Me,” has died at age 76.
The news was confirmed by his publicist, Phil Brown. No cause of death has been revealed, however.
King began his career in the late 1950s as part of R&B group The Drifters, whose hits included the classics “There Goes My Baby” and “Save The Last Dance For Me”. He would eventually go solo, and in 1961, became a Top 5 artist with “Stand By Me”. The song was an instant hit that not only put him on the charts in the early 60s, it gave him a brief career resurgence in 1986 when the Rob Reiner coming-of-age film of the same name hit theaters. He was eventually inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as part of the Drifters, in addition to being nominated as a solo artist.
In addition to “Stand By Me,” King also hit the charts with other soul music gems such as “Amor,” “Supernatural Thing – Part I,” and “Don’t Play That Song (You Lied)”. In short, King was a bonafide legend of R&B, whose contribution to popular music would be beyond measure even if “Stand By Me” had been his only hit.
Our condolences are with King’s family and loved ones. R.I.P.