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Jamie O’Hara, Member of 1980s Country Duo the O’Kanes, Dies at 70

Jamie O’Hara, a rustic music singer-songwriter who got here to fame as a member of the O’Kanes, a duo that had six straight high 10 singles in the late 1980s, died Thursday in Nashville. He was 70, and the trigger of loss of life was most cancers.

Apart from his tenure with the O’Kanes and subsequent solo work after the duo broke up in 1990, O’Hara was famend for his solo composition “Grandpa (Inform Me ‘Bout the Good Outdated Days),” a No. 1 smash for the Judds in 1986, which gained him a Grammy for greatest nation music.

O’Kane’s spouse, Lana, broke the unhappy information in a Fb submit.

“Expensive pals & followers,” she wrote on Thursday, “it’s with a damaged coronary heart that I need to inform you that my husband, good friend and love of my life took his final breath this morning at 11:11 at Alive hospice, as my son Brian sang him a plethora of Jesse Winchester songs, all stunningly applicable, although we’d by no means thought of them on this context earlier than, and Jamie’s personal songs, together with the earliest ones, which had been shockingly subtle for a person as younger as he was when he started his profession; and people of different pals. Jamie suffered tremendously in latest months. He’s not struggling, and for that we are able to all be grateful. He’ll reside in our hearts and in his songs. With love and gratitude to all our pals, on and offline, Lola.”

The O’Kanes, which O’Hara cofounded with Kieran Kane, had solely the briefest of runs, releasing three albums and a handful of singles between 1986 and 1990. However their presence was outsize in relation to their tenure, with that six-song streak of nation hits, one of which, “Cant Cease My Coronary heart From Loving You,” reached No. 1 in ’87.

After the duo break up, O’Hara went on to report three solo albums, the final of which was “Dream Hymns” in 2012.

Amongst O’Hara’s different notable compositions had been “The Chilly Laborious Reality” and “50,000 Names,” each of which met additional acclaim when George Jones recorded them.

He additionally wrote or co-wrote No. 1 hits for Gary Allan and Ronnie McDowell — “Man To Man,” and “Older Girl,” respectively — and had his songs recorded by Tammy Wynette, Conway Twitty, Trisha Yearwood, Don Williams, Tim McGraw, Josh Turner, Tanya Tucker, Sara Evans, Randy Travis, Lee Ann Womack, Pam Tillis, Shelby Lynne, Wynonna Judd and The Trio (Emmylou Harris, Dolly Parton, and Linda Ronstadt).

Tracy Gershon, O’Hara’s one-time writer, left a touching message of appreciation on O’Hara’s Fb web page, quoting one of the O’Kanes’ songs, “When We’re Gone, Lengthy Gone,” that was later coated by Dolly Parton: “After we’re gone, lengthy gone, the solely factor that may have mattered is the love that we shared and the method that we cared, once we’re gone lengthy gone.”

Wrote Gershon, “Jamie shared his love and light-weight and cared deeply for his family and friends. I used to be fortunate to be his writer at Sony Tree and he taught me to be a greater writer. It was an thrilling day for all of us when Jamie turned in a brand new music… as a result of these songs had been all the time particular. He and Lola turned my pals exterior of work… There are particular individuals who depart a mark on you and add a lot to your life. Jamie will all the time have a particular place in my coronary heart, He was one of the good ones. A particular human being.”

O’Hara traveled to the Vietnam Veteran’s Memorial with Emmylou Harris to carry out his music “50,000 Names” there with Emmylou Harris in 1997.

“He had a method of trying at life with such an exquisite sensibility,” Harris in an announcement. “I feel of him as a holy man.”


 

 

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