Rod Temperton: Michael Jackson Songwriter, Heatwave Member, Dies At 66
British songwriter Rod Temperton has died after a battle with cancer. Jon Platt, Chairman & CEO of Warner/Chappell, announced the news in a statement earlier today. Temperton was 66 years old.
"[Rod Temperton's] family is devastated and request total privacy at this, the saddest of sad times," Platt also wrote in the statement.
Referred to as "The Invisible Man," without Temperton the world wouldn't have a number of great songs. Temperton got his start in music through the funk group Heatwave, where he penned two of the band's most well known songs to date, "Boogie Nights" and "Always & Forever."
The former reached Number Two in the United States and the UK. He continued to play with Heatwave and contributed to two of their albums, before leaving the band to concentrate on songwriting.
Following that, Temperton best became known for crafting hits for pop icon Michael Jackson. Because of his work with Heatwave, acclaimed producer Quincy Jones brought Temperton onboard to write some tracks for Jackson.
Temperton is credited as the sole songwriter on "Thriller," "Rock With You" and "Off the Wall," among many other tracks.
He also wrote songs for Aretha Franklin, Donna Summer, Quincy Jones, Herbie Hancock, Rufus & Chaka Khan, Carpenters, and many others, as well as continued writing for Heatwave, too.
Temperton once summed up his approach to songwriting saying: "The first criteria is write something you love first, and once you feel those hairs standing up on the back of your hand, you can go to the world."
Artists such as the Weeknd and Nile Rodgers have paid their respects to the legendary songwriter on Twitter.
"My dear Rod, RIP you will be missed. My heartfelt condolences go out to your family. Always and Forever," Rodgers tweeted. The Chic leading man then posted another tweet, where he talked about how Chic's first tour was with Heatwave.