Producer behind Diana Ross, Jackson 5 hits dies at 68
Diana Ross poses backstage at the 54th annual Grammy Awards on Sunday, Feb. 12, 2012 in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)
Published Tuesday, March 26, 2013 7:18AM EDT
BELLINGHAM, Wash. - Motown songwriter-producer Deke Richards has died at a Bellingham, Wash., hospice at age 68.
Peace Health St. Joseph Medical Center spokeswoman Amy Cloud confirms that Richards, whose real name was Dennis Lussier, died Sunday at the Whatcom Hospice House.
A statement from Universal Music said Richards had been battling esophageal cancer.
Universal Music says that as leader of the Motown songwriting, arranging and producing team known as The Corporation, Richards was involved in writing and producing many Jackson 5 hits. Those songs included the Jackson 5's first three No. 1 hits - "I Want You Back," "ABC," and "The Love You Save."
He also co-wrote "Love Child" for Diana Ross & The Supremes, as well Ross' solo "I'm Still Waiting."