Jerry Ragovoy

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Jerry Ragovoy
Birth name Jordan Ragovoy
Also known as Norman Meade
Born (1930-09-04)September 4, 1930
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States
Died July 13, 2011(2011-07-13) (aged 80)
Genres Pop music
Occupations Songwriter, record producer
Years active 1953-2003

Jordan "Jerry" Ragovoy (September 4, 1930 – July 13, 2011)[1][2] was an American songwriter and record producer.

His best-known composition "Time Is on My Side" (written under the pseudonym of Norman Meade) was made famous by the Rolling Stones, although it had been recorded earlier by Kai Winding and Irma Thomas. Ragovoy also wrote "Stay With Me", which was originally recorded by Lorraine Ellison, and was performed by Mary J. Blige at the 49th Grammy Awards.[3]

Early life and career[edit]

Ragovoy was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, the son of a Hungarian-born Jewish optometrist.[4] He entered record production in 1953 with "My Girl Awaits Me" by the Castelles.[3]

Another well-known song by Ragovoy is "Piece of My Heart", co-written with Bert Berns and recorded originally by Erma Franklin, and later famously covered by Janis Joplin with Big Brother and the Holding Company. Between 1966 and 1968, Ragovoy was employed as producer and songwriter for the Warner Bros subsidiary Loma Records. He also co-wrote several songs in Janis Joplin's solo career, including "Try (Just a Little Bit Harder)" (originally by Lorraine Ellison on Loma Records), "Cry Baby" (originally by Garnet Mimms and the Enchanters, "Get it While You Can" (originally by Howard Tate, covered by Joplin) and "My Baby". Prior to Joplin's death, Ragovoy wrote a song especially for her next album, titled "I'm Gonna Rock My Way to Heaven". The song was never recorded or performed until shortly before Ragovoy's death in July 2011, when it was included in the theatrical production One Night with Janis Joplin, written and directed by Randy Johnson with arrangements and musical direction by Len Rhodes. Ragovoy was in attendance on opening night when the show premiered at Portland Center Stage on May 27, 2011.

Later career[edit]

Ragovoy also produced recorded work by Bonnie Raitt and Milkwood.[3] However, his involvement in the music industry was less prolific from the 1970s onwards.[3]

In 1973, he won a Grammy Award as producer on Best Score From an Original Cast Show Album, for Don't Bother Me, I Can't Cope.[5]

In 1974, Ragovoy teamed up with Dionne Warwick to produce her Then Came You album,[6] which peaked at No. 35 in the US Billboard R&B albums chart.[7]

In 2003, Ragovoy worked again with Howard Tate. The pair returned with an acclaimed CD, Howard Tate Rediscovered, written, arranged and produced by Ragovoy.[8]

In 2008, Ace Records released a compilation album entitled, The Jerry Ragovoy Story: Time Is on My Side.

In 2012, Ragovoy was portrayed by actor Brad Garrett in the film Not Fade Away.

Death[edit]

Ragovoy died, following a stroke, on July 13, 2011, at the age of 80.[2]

Notable compositions[edit]

Song title Artist Others
"About This Thing Called Love" Fabian
"Ain't Nobody Home" Howard Tate B. B. King, Bonnie Raitt
"All I Know is The Way I Feel" Irma Thomas Howard Tate, The Pointer Sisters
"A Wonderful Dream" The Majors
"Cloudy with a Chance of Tears" The Manhattans
"Cry Baby" Garnet Mimms and the Enchanters Janis Joplin
"Eight Days on the Road" Howard Tate Aretha Franklin, Foghat
"Either Side of the Same Town" Howard Tate Elvis Costello
"Get It While You Can" Howard Tate Janis Joplin
"Heart Be Still" Lorraine Ellison
"I Can't Wait Until I See My Baby's Face" Baby Washington Aretha Franklin, Dusty Springfield, Dionne Warwick, Madeline Bell
"I'll Make It Up to You" Garnet Mimms and the Enchanters Manfred Mann
"I'll Take Good Care of You" Garnet Mimms and the Enchanters
"It's Been Such a Long Way Home" Garnet Mimms and the Enchanters
"It Was Easier to Hurt Her" Garnet Mimms and the Enchanters Chris Farlowe, Dusty Springfield
"Looking for You" Garnet Mimms and the Enchanters Chris Farlowe
"Love Makin' Music" Barry White
"Morning Light" (co-writer with Don Benoliel) Louis Jordan Royal Crown Revue
"Move Me No Mountain" Dionne Warwick Hank Crawford, Chaka Khan, Soul II Soul, Love Unlimited
"My Baby" Garnet Mimms and the Enchanters Janis Joplin, The Yardbirds
"My Girl Awaits Me" The Castelles
"One Way Love" The Drifters Bryan Ferry
"Pata Pata" Miriam Makeba Osibisa, Percy Faith
"Piece of My Heart" Erma Franklin Big Brother and the Holding Company, Dusty Springfield, The Move, Bonnie Tyler, Faith Hill Janis Joplin
"Ring Bell" Miriam Makeba
"Stay with Me" Lorraine Ellison Sharon Tandy, The Walker Brothers, Bette Midler, Terry Reid, Phil Seymour, Michael Grimm, Ten Wheel Drive
"Stop" Howard Tate James Gang, Jimi Hendrix, Band of Gypsys, Super Session
"Sure Thing" Dionne Warwick
"Time Is on My Side" Kai Winding Irma Thomas, The Rolling Stones, The Moody Blues, Tracy Nelson
"Try (Just a Little Bit Harder)" Lorraine Ellison Janis Joplin
"What's It Gonna Be" Dusty Springfield Barbara Acklin
"Where Did My Baby Go" Butterfield Blues Band
"You Better Believe It" Small Faces
"You Don't Know Nothing About Love" Carl Hall Lorraine Ellison, Renée Geyer
"You Got It" Diana Ross

[2][9]

References[edit]

  1. ^ [1][dead link]
  2. ^ a b c Doc Rock. "2011 July To December". The Dead Rock Stars Club. Retrieved 2013-04-07. 
  3. ^ a b c d Unterberger, Richie. "Jerry Ragovoy - Music Biography, Credits and Discography". AllMusic. Retrieved 2013-04-07. 
  4. ^ Laing, Dave (20 July 2011). "Jerry Ragovoy obituary". The Guardian. Retrieved 20 July 2011. 
  5. ^ "Jerry Ragovoy - Awards". AllMusic. Retrieved 2013-04-07. 
  6. ^ Jason Elias. "Then Came You - Dionne Warwick | Songs, Reviews, Credits, Awards". AllMusic. Retrieved 2014-08-02. 
  7. ^ "Then Came You - Dionne Warwick | Awards". AllMusic. Retrieved 2014-08-02. 
  8. ^ "News". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 2013-04-07. 
  9. ^ "Artist: Jerry Ragovoy". Second Hand Songs. Retrieved 2013-04-07. 

External links[edit]