Ben E King

Source: Noam Galai/ Getty Images / Getty Images

R&B and soul singer Ben E King, best known for the classic song Stand By Me, has died at the age of 76.

King started his career in the late 1950s with The Drifters, singing on hits including There Goes My Baby and Save The Last Dance For Me.

After going solo, he hit the US top five with Stand By Me in 1961.

In 1999, the BMI announced that the song, written by King with Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller, was the fourth most-played track of the 20th Century on US radio and TV.

Earlier this year, the US Library of Congress added it to the National Recording Registry, declaring that “it was King’s incandescent vocal that made it a classic. Ben E. King performed during the 34th Annual John Lennon Tribute Benefit Concert at Symphony Space on December 5, 2014 in New York City. People were cheering and applauding the man that gave us the  song that is considered the best friendship tribute of all time.

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