Music News

Classic Songwriter Jerry Leiber Passes Away: Five Amazing Songs He Co-Wrote

Sad news hitting the web today: Jerry Leiber, the lyricist who wrote classic songs from Elvis Presley, The Drifters, Stealers Wheel, and many more, passed away today at the age of 78.

Leiber and Stoller worked as a team, with Leiber writing words to Stoller's compositions (that man's way with words is never quite so apparent as featured in "Yakety Yak"). The two were instrumental in the "crossing over" of pop music, working with both black and white artists. The duo won numerous awards for their contributions to popular music, including Grammys for their song "Is That All There Is" and the cast recording of Smokey Joe's Cafe.

In memory of the man's talent, here are five Leiber and Stoller compositions. It seems unthinkable that two men could work together to write so many enduring hits.

"Stand By Me," by The Muppets

"Hound Dog" by Big Mama Thorton

"Love Potion Number 9" by The Searchers

"On Broadway" by The Drifters

"Yakety Yak" by The Coasters

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Jason P. Woodbury is a music and pop-culture writer based in Phoenix. He is a regular contributor to the music blog Aquarium Drunkard and co-host of the Transmissions podcast.