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Legendary Songwriter Replaces Retired Chairman Hal David

Jimmy Webb in 2010

By Dean Olson - Eclectic Songwriter    January 19, 2011 


New York, NY

Multi-talented songwriter Jimmy Webb has been elected Chairman of the Board of the Songwriters Hall of Fame by its Board of Directors.

Webb's election follows Hal David's decision last month to step down from the SHOF Chairmanship after more than a decade of distinguished service; he will continue as an active Board Member and Chairman Emeritus. Previous SHOF leaders, in addition to David, included SHOF co-founder Johnny Mercer and Sammy Cahn.

Jimmy Webb, the Oklahoma-born son of a preacher, is a critically-acclaimed songwriting talent whose music has thrilled audiences over more than forty years with a chain of memorable hits. Webb is the only artist to ever receive Grammy awards for music, lyrics, and orchestration. He has been inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame, the Nashville Songwriter's Hall of Fame and, in 2003, was the recipient of the Songwriters Hall of Fame's prestigious Johnny Mercer Award. He has been married to WLIW TV executive and popular personality Laura Savini since 2004.

Though best known for the instant classics he provided for such artists as Glen Campbell ("By The Time I Get to Phoenix," "Wichita Lineman," "Galveston"), Richard Harris ("MacArthur Park," "Didn't We"), The Fifth Dimension, ("Up, Up and Away," "This Is Your Life"), The Brooklyn Bridge ("Worst That Could Happen"), Art Garfunkel ("All I Know"), Joe Cocker ("The Moon's A Harsh Mistress") and many more, Webb continues to write new songs that are as carefully crafted and magical as his legendary hits. Waylon Jennings, Willie Nelson, Johnny Cash, and Kris Kristofferson hit #1 in the late '80s with a new Webb standard: "The Highwayman," a ballad which won him yet another Grammy for Best Country Song of the Year, and a CMA Award for Single of the Year. Linda Ronstadt, who has recorded a multitude of his songs throughout her career, included four of his efforts on her double platinum album Cry Like A Rainstorm, Howl Like The Wind, and scored a top ten in 1990 with her rendition of Webb's "Adios." Webb's songs continue to grace a galaxy of major recording artists' albums, from Tony Bennett and Rosemary Clooney to Urge Overkill and R.E.M.

In addition to writing songs for other artists, Webb has been releasing albums of his own for many years, including the acclaimed 2010 release Just Across The River, which features such artists as Billy Joel, Vince Gill, Linda Ronstadt, Jackson Browne, Willie Nelson and Glen Campbell joining Webb on a selection of his songs. In 1999, Webb wrote Tunesmith, which was acclaimed as the "finest book about songwriting of our time," by Musician magazine.

Webb remarked: "It's truly an honor to have been elected Chairman of the Songwriters Hall of Fame. I know that my fellow Board members all join me in thanking Hal David for eleven years of outstanding leadership - a period that saw the Songwriters Hall of Fame establish an important digital presence with its Virtual Museum and, most recently, the launch of the Songwriters Hall of Fame Gallery at the Grammy Museum in Los Angeles. With Hal at the helm, the Songwriters Hall of Fame Awards and Induction Dinner has become one of the most anticipated events on the music industry calendar. Up-and-coming songwriters have benefited from the ongoing SHOF workshops and showcases. With Hal's involvement as Chairman Emeritus and the can-do spirit of our forward-thinking Board and management, the Songwriters Hall of Fame is poised to expand its role in preserving the legacy of the music creators of the past and helping to educate and inspire the songwriters of the future."

Commenting on the SHOF Board's choice for his successor, David said: "I have known Jimmy since he emerged as an important songwriting talent more than four decades ago. I have also been privileged to work with him as a fellow member on industry Boards of organizations advocating for creators' rights. Jimmy's dedication and commitment to music creators make him an excellent choice to lead the Songwriters Hall of Fame."

About The Songwriters Hall of Fame:
The Songwriters Hall of Fame celebrates songwriters, educates the public with regard to their achievements, and produces a spectrum of professional programs devoted to the development of new songwriting talent through workshops, showcases and scholarships. Over the course of the past 42 years, some key Songwriters Hall of Fame inductees have included Barry Mann and Cynthia Weil, Albert Hammond, Desmond Child, Loretta Lynn, John Fogerty, Jon Bon Jovi and Richie Sambora, Isaac Hayes and David Porter, Steve Cropper, Dolly Parton, Richard and Robert Sherman, Bill Withers, Carole King, Paul Simon, Bob Dylan, Billy Joel, Sir Elton John, Bernie Taupin, Brian Wilson, James Taylor, James Brown, Curtis Mayfield, Hal David and Burt Bacharach, Jim Croce, Phil Collins, Alan and Marilyn Bergman, Jimmy Webb, Paul Williams, Van Morrison, Crosby, Stills and Nash, Cy Coleman and many, many others. The Songwriters Hall of Fame was founded in 1969 by songwriter Johnny Mercer and publishers Abe Olman and Howie Richmond.

This comes from an exclusive press release from SHoF



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