Country Star and Elvis Presley Songwriter Mac Davis Dies at 78
He also had writing credits with Dolly Parton, Weezer, Avicii and Bruno Mars
Published Sep 30, 2020Mac Davis — an American country songwriter who penned a number of hits for Elvis Presley — has died. Longtime manager Jim Morey confirmed in a press release that Davis passed away in Nashville on Tuesday (September 29) after heart surgery, surrounded by family and friends. He was 78.
"Mac Davis has been my client for over 40 years, and more importantly, my best friend," Morey wrote. "He was a music legend, but his most important work was that as a loving husband, father, grandfather, and friend. I will miss laughing about our many adventures on the road and his insightful sense of humour."
Davis was born in Lubbock, TX, in 1942, and would move to Atlanta following high school. After starting a band and recording a handful of solo tracks in the city during the 1960s, he was hired by Nancy Sinatra's publishing company, Boots Enterprises, Inc.
At Boots, Davis would play on Sinatra's recordings and perform in her stage show, while also having his own published songs recorded by other artists. Songs including "A Little Less Conversation," "In the Ghetto," "Memories" and "Don't Cry Daddy" were recorded by Elvis Presley, while others were recorded by the likes of Kenny Rogers, B.J. Thomas, Louis Jordan, Perry Como and Helen Reddy.
Davis would leave Boots in 1970 to sign with Columbia Records, releasing solo debut Song Painter through the label that same year. Solo hits included "Baby Don't Get Hooked on Me," "One Hell of a Woman," "Stop and Smell the Roses," and "I Believe in Music."
The '70s would also see Davis launch a career in acting. After hosting his own variety show on NBC from 1974 to 1976, he would make his feature film debut in 1979's North Dallas Forty.
Davis would continue to work in songwriting later in his career, notably co-writing the title track of Dolly Parton's 1990 album White Limozeen. More recently, he collaborated with Weezer on their 2010 song "Time Flies" and also received writing credits on Avicii's "Addicted to You" and Bruno Mars's "Young Girls."