IT WAS TWENTY YEARS AGO TODAY…. EDDIE RABBITT DEAD AT 56

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On this day twenty  years ago- country/ pop music singer Eddie Rabbitt died of lung cancer at the age of fifty-six. It was known at the time that Rabbit { his birth name was Edward Thomas Rabbitt} had cancer but no one in Nashville knew it was terminal. He was dead and buried before his family announced his passing.

I am not writing this because I was a fan of his hit music. He had eight pop hits and even more country hits in the late 70’s to early 80’s- including a #1 “I Love A Rainy Night” which would be my favorite Eddie Rabbitt song because I also love a rainy night. Why I am writing about Eddie Rabbitt? His moment of genius with the help of Elvis Presley. One of my favorite Elvis 1970’s songs was one released in January 1970- Rabbitt and Dick Heard’s song “Kentucky Rain” { Rabbitt should have done a concept album on Rain songs} Elvis took Kentucky Rain to #16 on the pop charts. Its one of those songs I can listen to over and over again and not get tired of. I don’t know what Eddie Rabbit’s original version sounded like but it couldn’t have topped The King’s. OK I just had to do it- I found Rabbitt’s version on youtube and it sounds like a different song- The King blows it away.  Rabbitt’s sounds extremely easy listening. The King makes the song his own.

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8 responses to “IT WAS TWENTY YEARS AGO TODAY…. EDDIE RABBITT DEAD AT 56

  1. The name Eddie Rabbit doesn’t ring a bell at all. And while Elvis Presley was something like a teenage idol to me, I didn’t know his cover of “Kentucky Rain” either until I just listened to it.

    I mostly liked Elvis and still do for his rock & roll covers, especially the tunes he released during the 50s. “Jailhouse Rock”, “Blues Suede Shoes” and “Tutti Frutti” were among my favorite songs. Some of his later tunes I liked and still do were “In The Ghetto”, “Burning Love” and “Suspicious Minds.”

    While I’ve always enjoyed Elvis’ voice, in general, I haven’t been particularly fond of his 70s music.

    • Thank you. I remember being surprised when I heard that Rabbitt had written that song- long before he released his first album.

    • I think if I had wrote a song that someone like Elvis had covered and mastered… what more would you want in life? I heard Steve Earle once say and this was years before his career as a singer-songwriter got going- he was just a songwriter at the time– Elvis was to record a song he had written but the session was cancelled and Elvis then passed away before it was done. If Eddie Rabbitt hadn’t done another thing in his professional life- it was a success with Elvis doing Kentucky Rain!

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