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Stars that died 2010

Friday, March 26, 2010

ELLIOT A. WILLENSKY died he was 66

ELLIOT A. WILLENSKY Acclaimed Composer and Lyricist Elliot, passed away on Monday, March 29, 2010 in Summit, New Jersey, at age 66, after suffering a stroke.

Elliot Willensky, who composed songs for the late Michael Jackson solo smash hit, 'Got To Be There".
Willensky wrote songs for dozens of musical luminaries, including Smokey Robinson, Gladys Knight, Thelma Houston, Syreeta and Jerry Butler.

Willensky's duet, "If You Say My Eyes Are Beautiful," sung by Jermaine Jackson and Whitney Houston, became, according to People Magazine, one of the top 10 songs performed at weddings.

"He was a romantic," Steven Willensky said. "He had a love and passion for song writing."

After graduating from Bayonne High School, Willensky earned a Bachelors' degree in
biology from Boston University and did post-graduate studies at BU and the University of Massachusetts.

He was a research scientist in Maryland when he followed his passion for music and became a songwriter in 1969.

He was 27 and living in Los Angeles when Motown Records accepted his song as Michael Jackson's first solo single, "Got To Be There."

The song went gold and later became a hit for Chaka Khan.

His TV credits include The Bell Telephone Hour, music coordinator of Tony Orlando and Dawn Show, and jingles for Hertz, Fresca, and Chrysler.

His last project before he died was writing "When It's Time To Say Goodbye" for an upcoming documentary about the life of Karen Ann Quinlan.

He is survived by his mother Gertrude Berlin Willensky Sussman, brothers Fred and Steven, and nieces Rona and Marisa and nephew David.

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1 comment:

Dianne said...

Elliot was magic. He celebrated life in in everything he did. His secret acts of kindness will never be fully known nor could they be listed. Elliot's generousity was on a heroic scale. He was joyous, passionate and full of the very best sort of mischief. The kind of mischief that returns people to the source of joy in their lives. He is greatly loved.

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