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Edward C. Cobb (February 25, 1938 – September 19, 1999) was an American musician, songwriter, and record producer, most notably during the 1950s and 1960s. He is best known for writing the song "Tainted Love" for Gloria Jones, which later became a hit worldwide when it was covered by Soft Cell.
The Four Preps
After his performing career ended, Cobb became fully focused on work as a record producer and sound engineer, which he had already begun doing by the Four Preps' breakup. He became involved with acts such as the Standells, the Lettermen, Ketty Lester, the Chocolate Watch Band, the Piltdown Men, Fleetwood Mac, Steely Dan, and Pink Floyd. Cobb also wrote songs for many of his acts, most famously 1966's "Dirty Water" for the Standells, 1964's "Every Little Bit Hurts" for Brenda Holloway, and 1965's "Tainted Love".
In his private life, Cobb was a champion horse breeder and, for a short while, served as president of the Idaho Racing Commission.
Cobb wrote, or co-wrote the following songs, most notably recorded by the artists noted:
- "Heartbeat" – Gloria Jones, later covered by the Remo Four
- "Brontosaurus Stomp" – The Piltdown Men
- "Dirty Water", "Barracuda", "Sometimes Good Guys Don't Wear White" (later covered by Minor Threat, the Outlets, and the Vaccines), "Why Pick on Me" – The Standells
- "Every Little Bit Hurts" – Brenda Holloway, Aretha Franklin, Gladys Knight & The Pips, Etta James, Petula Clark, Cilla Black, the Small Faces, Jimi Hendrix, George Clinton, The Spencer Davis Group, Jeffrey Osborne, Teena Marie, The Clash, The Jam, Alicia Keys
- "I'll Always Love You", "You Are Very Much a Part of Me" – Brenda Holloway
- "No Way Out", "Sweet Young Thing" – The Chocolate Watchband
- "Tainted Love" – originally recorded by Gloria Jones in 1964 but her version did not chart. Significantly reworked by Soft Cell and released in 1981, becoming a No. 1 hit in 17 countries and remaining one of the most enduring pop songs of the 1980s. Later covered by Coil, Marilyn Manson, the Scorpions, and reworked for the hit song "SOS" by Rihanna.
- Locey, Bill (13 June 1996). "Remaking the Past". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 27 July 2018.
- "The Musical Journey of Ed Cobb, the Songwriter Behind "Tainted Love" and "Dirty Water"". Cover Me. 2018-02-25. Retrieved 2019-11-09.
- "The Dead Rock Stars Club 1998 - 1999". Thedeadrockstarsclub.com. Retrieved 3 January 2019.