Jody Reynolds, R.I.P.

noah | November 20, 2008 8:53 am
Rockabilly singer Ralph Joseph “Jody” Reynolds passed away as the result of a bout with liver cancer two weeks ago. Reynolds’ No. 5 hit “Endless Sleep” was notable in that it was the first ’50s pop hit to fall under the rubric of “teen tragedy tracks” that included “Teen Angel” and “Ebony Eyes”; Reynolds claimed that the dreamy, reverbed-out track was written after he’d listened to “Heartbreak Hotel” five times in a row. “Sleep” told the story of a young boy who was searching for his girlfriend after the two had a fight, and it was rejected by a bunch of record labels for being too depressing before he finally found a label that liked it–although a happy ending was tacked on by execs. After “Sleep,” Reynolds wrote songs and ran a Palm Springs music store; among his wares was a guitar that Elvis Presley played on his ’68 Comeback Special. Reynolds was 75. [LAT / YouTube]