Grammy Award-Winning Nashville Songwriter Passes Away At 73

Grammy Award-Winning Nashville Songwriter Passes Away At 73 | Classic Country Music Videos

KSDK News / Twitter


You may not recognize his name, but you most definitely remember his work.

Kenny O’Dell was a singer-songwriter best known for penning Charlie Rich’s “Behind Closed Doors” and “Mama He’s Crazy” for The Judds. Rich also had a Top Ten hit with O’Dell’s “I Take It On Home.”


His own success as a singer came in 1974 when he covered Loretta Lynn’s “Trouble In Paradise,” and later scored a Top Ten country hit with “Let’s Shake Hands and Come Out Lovin'” in 1978.

“Behind Closed Doors” won him a Grammy Award for Best Country Song, CMA Awards for Song and Single of the Year, and ACM Awards for Song and Single of the Year.

O’Dell passed away from natural causes on Tuesday (March 27) at a health care facility just outside of Nashville, The Washington Post reported. 

He was respected among his peers, winning Songwriter of the Year in 1984 from the Nashville Songwriter’s Association International. According to USA Today, he was “one of the longest serving members for the board of directors for the Nashville Songwriter’s Association International.”

He was married to guitarist and singer Corki Ray, who passed away last year. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his loved ones.

Watch Charlie Rich perform “Behind Closed Doors” below.

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