Songwriters don’t often get the credit they deserve — if a song becomes a hit, we think of it as the success of the artist who performed it.
But recently, country legend Dolly Parton paid a sweet tribute to the writer of one of her biggest hit songs, after the songwriter recently passed away.
Cynthia Weil died on June 1 at the age of 82. Weil was one of the most prolific and influential pop songwriters of all time, helping to shape the sound of rock and roll in the 1960s.
In a songwriting partnership with her husband Barry Mann, Weil co-wrote some of the most famous songs of the 20th century, including the Righteous Brothers’ “You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feelin,” George Benson’s “On Broadway,” the Ronettes’ “Walking in the Rain,” Mama Cass’ “Make Your Own Kind of Music,” and The Animals’ “We Gotta Get Out of this Place.”
Weil also co-wrote one of Dolly Parton’s biggest songs: “Here You Come Again.”
The 1977 track was a major breakthrough for Parton: she won her first Grammy Award for Best Female Country Vocal Performance.
While Parton had established herself as a country star with songs like “Jolene” and “I Will Always Love You,” “Here You Come Again” was her first major pop crossover hit, reaching #3 on the Billboard Hot 100.
Without Weil’s hit song, perhaps we wouldn’t have the Dolly we know and love today. And it’s clear that Parton never forgot the songwriters behind that iconic pop tune: After Weil passed away last week, Parton shared a sweet tribute on social media.
“I was so sad to hear that Cynthia Weil had passed,” Parton wrote in a statement released on Instagram. “She was one of the greatest writers of all time and I owe her such a debt of gratitude because she and her partner, Barry Mann, wrote my first million selling song ‘Here You Come Again.'”
“So, I have always been grateful and will be eternally grateful to her. I’m sure she’ll be missed by all the ones that love her and always be appreciated for all of the wonderful music she left behind.”
Weil’s daughter, Dr. Jenn Mann, confirmed the news to TMZ last week, paying tribute to her late mom.
“My mother, Cynthia Weil, was the greatest mother, grandmother and wife our family could ever ask for. She was my best friend, confidant, and my partner in crime and an idol and trailblazer for women in music.”
Weil and Mann were one of the most acclaimed songwriting pairs in pop music: they were inducted to the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1987, later receiving the Johnny Mercer Award, the hall’s highest honor. They were also inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2010.
The duo won two Grammy Awards including Song of the Year, both for the song “Somewhere Out There,” the theme from An American Tail.
They also have the distinction of writing the most-played song of the 20th century: “You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feeling.”
Weil is survived by her husband; they were married for 62 years. Mann is 84 years old.
Rest in peace to the incredible Cynthia Weil — one of the best songwriters of all time. “Here You Come Again” was a huge breakthrough for Dolly Parton, and it’s heartwarming to see Dolly write such a grateful tribute.
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