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Songwriter Joe South Dies at Age 72

Joe South

Songwriter Joe South, who played on Bob Dylan‘s ‘Blonde on Blonde’ and whose song ‘Hush’ became a huge hit for Deep Purple, died at age 72 today (Sept. 5) of unspecified causes.


South had a solid career writing for others. Country artist Lynn Anderson enjoyed pop crossover success with her 1970 hit single ‘Rose Garden’ that South penned, while Billy Joe Royal recorded the initial version of ‘Hush’ as well as the South-written tracks ‘Down in the Boondocks’ and ‘I Knew You When.’

As a solo artist, South’s biggest hit was the 1969 song ‘Games People Play,’ which received Grammys for Best Contemporary Song and Song of the Year. Other solo favorites included ‘Don’t It Make You Want to Go Home’ and ‘Walk a Mile in My Shoes.’

Prior to his songwriting and solo success, South worked as a session musician, playing with Dylan as well as Marty Robbins, Eddy Arnold, Aretha Franklin, and Solomon Burke.

The musician was inducted into the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1979 and became a member of the Georgia Music Hall of Fame in 1981.

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