August 02, 2011

Gene McDaniels, R.I.P.

A great singer-songwriter, Gene McDaniels, died last Friday. He was best known for singing to Top 5 hits int he early 1960s: A Hundred Pounds of Clay and Tower of Strength.

After his hitmaking phase, he went on to be a successful record producer and writer. His masterpiece was Compared To What, an antiwar polemic, originally written for Roberta Flack but covered magnificently by Les McCann and Eddie Harris. This was one of the first to jazz songs to gain wide acceptance on rock radio.