Singer Bobby Hatfield of Righteous Brothers Dead
DETROIT (Reuters) – Bobby Hatfield, the tenor half of The Righteous Brothers singing duo who made “You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feeling” a worldwide hit, was found dead in a western Michigan hotel, police said on Thursday.
Hatfield, 63, was found about 6:45 p.m. Wednesday by hotel workers in Kalamazoo, Michigan, after he did not respond to a wake-up call before a show. Kalamazoo police said there were no signs of foul play and that, while an autopsy would be conducted, Hatfield apparently died of natural causes.
Hatfield and his singing partner, Bill Medley, got together in 1961 in Southern California. They were performing in a local bar as part of a five-piece group called the Paramours when a Marine shouted “That’s righteous, brothers,” leading to the name.
With producer Phil Spector providing his “wall of sound,” The Righteous Brothers produced a string of hits in the 1960s, including “Unchained Melody” and “(You’re My) Soul and Inspiration.” But “Lovin’ Feeling,” released in 1964, was their biggest hit, and industry experts rank it as the most-played radio song of all time.
The two split for a time in the late 1960s, but reunited and had a few hits in the mid-1970s. Their star rose again in 1990, when “Unchained Melody” was used in the film “Ghost.”
Medley and Hatfield had continued to tour and perform a few months a year in Las Vegas. The two were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame earlier this year.
Hatfield is survived by his wife and four children.