Pop Poet Rod McKuen Dies at 81
January 30, 2015 at 1:21 PM (PT)
ROD McKUEN, a songwriter and poet whose compositions include the OSCAR-nominated song “Jean” for the 1969 film “The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie,” has died at 81.
McKUEN had recently been hospitalized and died THURSDAY at a BEVERLY HILLS rehabilitation center of respiratory arrest after suffering from pneumonia.
Among his commercial successes in the '60s and '70s were his adaptation of JACQUES BREL's "Le Moribond" for the ENGLISH-language version of “Seasons in the Sun,” later covered by the KINGSTON TRIO and TERRY JACKS. FRANK SINATRA also recorded an album of McKUEN songs in 1969 called “A Man Alone,” which included “Love’s Been Good to Me.”
Besides his score for “The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie,” McKUEN’s music for the animated feature “A Boy Named Charlie Brown” was also nominated for an OSCAR.
McKUEN was born in OAKLAND in 1933 and wrote later of an unhappy childhood and the abuse he endured at the hands of his stepfather. In the '60s, McKUEN moved to PARIS and began writing poetry. In all, he published more than three dozen collections of poems and essays.