Bert Burns

It's amazing to me that someone as talented and prolific a rock and roll writer can go so unnoticed by so many for so long. Maybe it's just me, but I never heard of Mr. Burns until I saw the off-Broadway show: "Piece of my Heart" this weekend. Perhaps other here have heard of him (in fact, I'm sure of that given the level of expertise demonstrated on this site).
I've heard all the music (as I'm sure most of you have also), but never thought about who wrote those great tunes. Very good show about a great rock and roll writer/producer. If you are in NYC try and get tixs, you won't be disappointed.
i know of him through his affiliation with early van morrison, but just looked him up on wikipedia--didn't realize how many great classics he wrote--twist and shout, here comes the night, i want candy, cry to me, etc. etc. died very young, unfortunately.
Yes, all those plus don't forget "Piece of my heart." it's also a very interesting story. Now I know who "Candy" is!
i've been reading "here comes the night," by joel selvin; nominally a biography of bert berns, but more a look at the 50s/60s ny songwriter/production milieu (brill building, atlantic records, etc.). not great literature--there's not a lot of character analysis--but a very comprehensive history of an era. they really don't write songs like these anymore.
Loomis,imagine clocking in to work at 9 AM and your boss pops his head in the office and says"you're going to have a song for me by lunch,right?".I'll look for that book,sounds right up my alley,lots of facts.By the way I think that actually they do "write songs like these anymore" maybe they just can't sell them.On the plus side if we live long enough to see it they'll probably come back in style.
i'd love an office job like that--alas, i'm wholly bereft of talent.
unsurprisingly, being in such proximity to to other incredible songwriters created a highly competitive frenzy. per carol king:
"Every day we squeezed into our respective cubby holes with just enough room for a piano, a bench, and maybe a chair for the lyricist if you were lucky. You'd sit there and write and you could hear someone in the next cubby hole composing a song exactly like yours. The pressure in the Brill Building was really terrific—because Donny (Kirshner) would play one songwriter against another. He'd say: "We need a new smash hit"—and we'd all go back and write a song and the next day we'd each audition for Bobby Vee's producer."
a bunch of "modern" masters--lou reed, paul simon, becker/fagen--also started out in that scene.