Entertainment & Arts

Bill Dees, US songwriter, dies aged 73

Johnny Cash, Loretta Lynn and Roy Orbison
Image caption Johnny Cash (l), Loretta Lynn and Roy Orbison (r) all recorded songs written by Dees

Bill Dees, the successful US songwriter who co-wrote Roy Orbison hit Oh, Pretty Woman, has died in Arkansas aged 73.

Glen Campbell, Johnny Cash, Loretta Lynn and Gene Pitney were among other country music stars to record songs penned by the prolific Texas native.

Oh, Pretty Woman topped the charts in 1964 and went on to inspire the title of Julia Roberts' hit 1990 movie.

A memorial will take place on Saturday in Mountain Home, the northern Arkansas city where Dees died on 24 October.

Dees started out as a singer but enjoyed his most fruitful period as Orbison's friend, collaborator and bandmate.

Other Orbison singles Dees co-wrote included Born on the Wind, Walk On and It's Over, a number one hit in the UK.

Dees continued to write songs and perform following Orbison's 1988 death and released a solo album in 2002 called Saturday Night at the Movies.

In an online obituary posted by Kirby & Family Funeral Services, he was remembered as "a glass is half full kind of guy who... loved to play the guitar or piano and sing".

More on this story