Musician and singer songwriter Kenny Rankin, who also wrote songs for the likes of Peggy Lee and Mel Torme, has died at the age of 69 in Los Angeles. He had been suffering from lung cancer.
Rankin was born and raised in New York and encouraged in his musical pursuits by his mother. He began his career as a singer-songwriter, releasing a number of albums in the seventies that made the Billboard Top 100, and which brought him a considerable following.
He was to prove more interested in jazz than pop, however, and as time went on his style developed to have a more jazz orientated sound. He went on, as aforementioned, to write songs for other artists, as well as reworking classic songs, one such being The Beatles' track 'Blackbird', which Rankin recorded on his 1975 album 'Silver Morning', and which impressed Paul McCartney so much that he asked Rankin to perform it at his and John Lennon's songwriters' Hall Of Fame induction.
Denny Stilwell of Rankin's label Mack Avenue Records, said: "That he was still at the top of his game is one of the saddest parts of his passing for me. He performed the new material in our office over the last few months and his voice was still in its finest form - he sounded absolutely amazing. Our hearts and prayers are with his family".
Rankin is survived by a son, two daughters and one grandchild.
Source: Unlimited Media www.unlimitedmedia.co.uk