R.I.P. Nick Ashford (May 4, 1942 – August 22, 2011)

According to the Washington Post, Nick Ashford, of Ashford & Simpson, died yesterday at the age of 70. Ashford, who along with wife Valerie Simpson wrote some of Motown’s biggest hits, died in a New York City hospital, said publicist Liz Rosenberg, who was Ashford’s longtime friend. He had been suffering from throat cancer and had undergone radiation treatment, she told The Associated Press. They had some of their greatest success at Motown with classics like “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough” and “Reach Out And Touch Somebody’s Hand” by Diana Ross.

They also wrote “I’m Every Woman”, which was originally performed by Chaka Khan and later remade by Whitney Houston.

Chaka Khan

Whitney Houston

But for us ’80s fans, their most populat hit was “Solid”, which was released in 1984:

The duo was married for 38 years.In recent years, the pair continued to perform. They also were owners of the New York City restaurant Sugar Bar, where many top names and emerging talents would put on showcases.

In 2002, Ashford & Simpson were inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame.

Ashford is survived by his wife and two daughters.

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