Nick Ashford of Ashford and Simpson dies at 70

He was a long, lanky man with a golden pen. With his gorgeous wife, Valerie Simpson, Nick Ashford wrote some of the most memorable songs of the Motown era, including "Ain't No Mountain High Enough" and "You're All I Need to Get By."  He and Simpson followed up with a strong performing career that featured the big hit, "Solid (As a Rock)."  Ashford died on Monday after a long bout with throat cancer at age 70.

Perhaps Ashford's biggest songwriting contributions were to the career of Diana Ross. He and Simpson provided her with some of her signature hits, including "Reach Out And Touch Somebody's Hand" and her smash disco hit "The Boss."  All this success made Ashford and Simpson a shoo in for the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2002.

He was a long, lanky man with a golden pen. With his gorgeous wife, Valerie Simpson, Nick Ashford wrote some of the most memorable songs of the Motown era, including "Ain't No Mountain High Enough" and "You're All I Need to Get By."  He and Simpson followed up with a strong performing career that featured the big hit, "Solid (As a Rock)."  Ashford died on Monday after a long bout with throat cancer at age 70.

Perhaps Ashford's biggest songwriting contributions were to the career of Diana Ross. He and Simpson provided her with some of her signature hits, including "Reach Out And Touch Somebody's Hand" and her smash disco hit "The Boss."  All this success made Ashford and Simpson a shoo in for the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2002.

We still think of Nick Ashford as eternally twenty-something, and he lived his life like a young man.  He and Simpson continued to write dozens and dozens of hits throughout his life, with such post-Motown smashes as "I'm Every Woman" for Chaka Khan.  And they opened New York's famed Sugar Bar, where they continued to perform regularly and helped to usher in a new generation of hitmakers.

Please leave your thoughts about Nick Ashford below, and enjoy the video of his hit single, "Solid."  If you want to see extensive reflections from our friend David Nathan, you can click here.

Funeral arrangements for Nick Ashford
NICK ASHFORD 1941-2011

The Sugar Bar and the Ashford & Simpson Family have finalized
funeral arrangements for NICK ASHFORD.

WHERE: Abyssinian Baptist Church
132 West 138 Street, between Lenox and Seventh Avenues, Harlem.

WHEN: Date and Time: Saturday, August 27 at 4 pm.

For more info: 212.579.0222 

 

 

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