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Motown Hit Maker Deke Richards Dead At 68: Rest In Peace

Deke Richards

Deke Richards

We here at Clizbeats wanted to take a moment to pay our respects to Deke Richards.  The Motown songwriter/producer died on Sunday March 24th following a battle with esophageal cancer. He was 68 years old.

Richards made his mark on the music industry as part of Motown’s songwriting and production team known as The Corporation. According to Billboard’s reflective report, Richards and Corporation members Alphonzo Mizell, and Motown Records founder, Berry Gordy made The Corporation know for writing and producing hits for The Jackson 5 in the late 60s and 70s.  Those hits included The Jackson 5’s first three chart toppers “I Want You Back,” “ABC”, and “The Love You Save.”  Later, Richards went on to co-write Diana Ross & the Supremes,Bobby Darin and Bonnie Bramlett.

Richards’ final work as a producer in the Motown world was working as the mixer on  eight unreleased tracks by Martha Reeves & the Vandellas.  They will serve as part of Universal Music Enterprises’ three-CD box set “50th Anniversary: The Singles 1962-1972.”  It is set for release on April 5th.
Deke Richards is survived by his wife Joan Lussier.  In lieu of flowers, the family is asking that Richards’ be honored through supporting music education through Heros And Legends, a scholarship foundation founded by a comittee of Motown alumni.  Click here for more information.

Richards passed away at the Whatcom Hospice House in Bellingham, Washington.  Rest in peace Deke.  Thank you for the music!

Related Media:

The Jackson 5

” Want You Back” (1969)

Motown Records

The Jackson 5

“ABC” (1970)

Motown Records

The Jackson 5

“The Love You Save”

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