Clint Ballard, Jr.

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Clint Ballard, Jr.
Birth name Clinton Conger Ballard, Jr.
Born (1931-05-24)May 24, 1931
El Paso, Texas, USA
Died December 23, 2008(2008-12-23) (aged 77)
Denton, Texas, USA
Occupation(s) Songwriter
Years active 1960s–1970s
Notable instruments
piano

Clint Ballard, Jr. (May 24, 1931 – December 23, 2008)[1] was an American songwriter. He wrote two Billboard Hot 100 number one hits. The first was "Game of Love" by Wayne Fontana and The Mindbenders in 1965.[2] The second was the 1975 hit, "You're No Good" by Linda Ronstadt (first sung by Dee Dee Warwick).[3]

Biography

When Ballard was three years old, he played the piano for KTSM, an El Paso radio station. When he was 11, he attended a musical program for gifted students at the University of North Texas. After serving in the U.S. Army, he moved to New York and became a song writer and a composer of musicals, including Come Back Little Sheba. His song, Hey, Little Baby, was recorded by band leader Mitch Miller and became the theme of the 1958 World's Fair in Belgium.[4][5][6]

Earlier in his career in 1957, Ballard 'discovered' the Kalin Twins and became their manager.[7] Ballard wrote the Kalins' Decca debut single, "Jumpin' Jack." The follow-up, "When" (written by Paul Evans) made the U.S. Top Ten and number one on the U.K. charts.

After leaving the Kalins, in 1958, he wrote "Ev'ry Hour, Ev'ry Day of My Life," a hit for Malcolm Vaughan, and Frankie Avalon's Top-Ten hit "Gingerbread."

Ballard's own recording career was less successful. In addition to recording several singles under his own name without much success, in 1960 he adopted the alias Buddy Clinton to cut a two-sided single featuring the songs "Take Me to Your Ladder (I'll See Your Leader Later)" and "Joanie's Forever," both co-written by then-unknown composer Burt Bacharach with his writing-partner Bob Hilliard.

Ballard wrote one of his most successful songs in 1963, "You're No Good," which was first recorded by Dee Dee Warwick. A competing version recorded by Betty Everett appeared weeks later and was a bigger hit, cracking the R&B Top Ten. A year later, the British group the Swinging Blue Jeans covered "You're No Good," as well. Linda Ronstadt's version hit number one on the Billboard charts in 1975.

Ballard's songs were often recorded by artists of the British Invasion. The Swinging Blue Jeans, recorded "You're No Good" and later "It Isn't There." In 1966 the Zombies recorded his "Gotta Get a Hold of Myself." Ballard wrote "I'm Alive" expressly for the Hollies which became their first number-one hit. One of Ballard's best-known songs, "The Game of Love," was recorded by Manchester-based Wayne Fontana and the Mindbenders in 1965. The single went hit number one in the U.S. and peaked at number two in the U.K. Ballard also wrote the subsequent Mindbenders' chart singles "Just a Little Bit Too Late" and "She Needs Love."

Ballard later wrote songs for the Ricky Nelson feature film "Love and Kisses." He also wrote a series of commercial jingles, including a theme for the Greyhound bus line.

Other songs

He also wrote "I'm Alive" for The Hollies, which was number one in the UK Singles Chart in 1965; and also "Good Timin'" for Jimmy Jones which reached number one in the UK five years earlier in 1960.

Other songs include "Ginger Bread" for Frankie Avalon, and "There's Not a Minute" for Ricky Nelson and "Gotta Get a Hold of Myself" for The Zombies - see fuller list below.

Songwriting credits

References

  1. "IMDb.com database". Retrieved November 21, 2008.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  2. ""Game of Love" at Billboard Hot 100". 1965.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  3. ""You're No Good" at Billboard Hot 100". 1975.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  4. El Paso Songwriter Clint Ballard Jr. Dies at Age 77, El Paso Times, December 31, 2008
  5. Obituary: Clinton Conger Ballard, Jr., Denton Record-Chronicle, December 28, 2008
  6. Douglas Martin, Clint Ballard Jr., Writer of Hit Songs, Dies at 77, The New York Times, January 19, 2009
  7. "Hal Kalin obituary by Alan Clayson". London: Guardian.co.uk. September 27, 2005. Retrieved November 21, 2008.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  8. "Clint Ballard, Jr. songwriting credits". Allmusic.com. Retrieved November 21, 2008.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>

External links