Media outlets confirmed the death of English keyboardist and songwriter Rod Temperton today (October 5).
Jon Platt of Warner/Chappell, the songwriter’s music publisher, announced that Temperton died last week at the age of 66 following ”a brief, aggressive battle with cancer.”
Temperton made his mark working primarily with definitive Black artists like Michael Jackson, Donna Summer and Herbie Hancock. He rose to fame as a member of the R&B/disco group Heatwave in the late 1970s. He eventually partnered with superproducer Quincy Jones, writing a series of hit songs with him like Jackson’s “Thriller” and “Rock With You.” Temperton continued to write songs for other artists and several films, earning an Oscar nomination alongside Jones and Lionel Richie for “The Color Purple’s” “Miss Celie’s Blues.”
We honor this songwriting great’s legacy with these five classic tracks:
What’s your favorite Rod Temperton track? Let us know in the comments.