(CelebrityAccess) — Tony Joe White, an American singer-songwriter best known for his hits “Polk Salad Annie” and “Rainy Night in Georgia” has died. He was 75.
White’s death was announced by his record label Yep Roc Records on Thursday. “It is with deep respect and admiration that we announce the passing of legendary singer-songwriter Tony Joe White, he was 75. It was confirmed today by his family.”
White, a prolific recording artist whose career spanned more than 5 decades, and crossed genres from rock and R&B to blues and country, recorded more than 40 albums over the course of his career but his only real success on the charts came in 1969 when his Monument Records hit “Polk Salad Annie” peaked at #8 on the Billboard Hot 100.
White found more success as a songwriter, and Elvis picked up on “Polk Salad Annie” and recorded the hit on his 1970 album “On Stage” and added it to his live performances.
White also penned hits for artists such as Brook Benton, who took White’s song “Rainy Night in Georgia” to No. 4 on the Billboard Hot 100 and Tina Turner, who recorded “Steamy Windows” and “Undercover Agent for the Blues” on her 1989 album Foreign Affairs.
Other artists who recorded White’s songs included Willie Nelson, Waylon Jennings, Ray Charles, Kenny Chesney, and numerous others.
In the early 1990s, White signed with Polydor and experienced a career resurgence, recording Closer to the Truth in 1991 and touring with Joe Cocker and Eric Clapton.
White’s final album Bad Mouthin’ was released just last month and included five original songs along with some of his early repertoire.
Glenn Dicker, co-founder of Yep Roc Records said, “Tony Joe White was a true American original. In everything he did he did it with his own unique voice. There was a gentle ease and flow that vibrated from the man. Always a positive vibe. We have been very fortunate to have been able to work with Tony Joe over these past few albums and years. We’re grateful for all the wonderful music…and the hangs. We love you Tony Joe.”
White is survived by his wife, Leann, his children Michelle, Jim Bob and Jody, as well as several grandchildren. Funeral arrangements are pending.