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Shel Silverstein

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Sheldon Alan “Shel” Silverstein (25th September 1930 – 10th May 1999) was an American poet, songwriter, musician, composer, cartoonist, screenwriter, and author of children’s books.

Silverstein’s passion for music was clear early on as he studied for a while at the Chicago College of Performing Arts at Roosevelt University. As a songwriter, Silverstein kept a low profile but cast a long shadow. He tended to shun publicity and even photographers. Nonetheless, his musical output included many songs which were hits for other artists. Most notably, he wrote the music and lyrics for “A Boy Named Sue” that was performed by Johnny Cash (for which he won a Grammy in 1970); “One’s on the Way” (which was a hit for Loretta Lynn), and “The Unicorn Song” which, despite having nothing to do with Ireland nor Irish culture, became the signature piece for The Irish Rovers in 1968 and is popular in pubs all over the world to this day. He wrote the lyrics and music for most of the Dr. Hook songs, including “Cover of the Rolling Stone”, “Freakin’ at the Freakers’ Ball”, “Sylvia’s Mother”, and the cautionary song about VD, “Don’t Give a Dose to the One You Love Most”. He also wrote many of the songs performed by Bobby Bare, including “Marie Laveau”, “Rosalie’s Good Eats Cafe”, “The Mermaid”, “The Winner”, and “Tequila Sheila”.

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  • brootaljared

    his music is overlooked

    19 May 4:30pm Reply
  • EvlutnaryReject

    Your always welcome at our house is the happiest serial killer song I've ever heard. Always makes me smile! A lady once sang it on the muppet show!

    25 Jan 2013 Reply
  • 2Serenity

    Wow..I had never heard his Shel Silverstein's voice and I had no idea that he was an accomplished musician/song writer. Thank you @Rdio for letting me see the gems that you have available on your website!! xo

    15 Feb 2012 Reply
  • blackendmehrdad

    legend

    13 Feb 2012 Reply
  • MohammadReza20

    His books are so popular in Iran.

    21 Aug 2011 Reply
  • dharmanaut

    I'm concerned my all time favorite shel silverstein's entire album is censored and hopefully talking about doesnt result in me getting censored: Fuck 'Em, which is, if, i can paradoxically engage in hyperbole, the most brilliant deconstruction of apathy, cannaboid or other, every built. how do things come to lastfm?

    21 Aug 2011 Reply
  • Strawb77

    i saw polly in a porny with a pony and it damn near blowed my mind- rofl!

    30 Jan 2011 Reply
  • mehdi483

    I love my right hand! RIP you pervert

    4 Nov 2010 Reply
  • NathanHess

    <3 http://youtube.com/watch?v=1TZCP6OqRlE&feature=related The Actual 1973 Giving Tree Movie, read by Shel Silverstein

    25 Aug 2010 Reply
  • nooneastern

    join the Shel Silverstein group

    22 Aug 2010 Reply
  • Skiye

    brilliant man.

    22 Apr 2010 Reply
  • Marxism1

    I love your voice.

    14 Feb 2010 Reply
  • B-AIRLINE

    ALWAYS GOOD FOR A LAUGH

    18 Nov 2009 Reply
  • rockerandy

    Uncle Shelby, You are the shit and my hero and i would roll em faster faster than anyone could smoke!i aint paranoid i know you shit in my pecan pie!

    31 Aug 2009 Reply
  • Himmelhost

    Where can I get The Ugliest Man in Town?

    18 Aug 2009 Reply
  • JoshCIVM

    No one has affected me so poignantly and consistently throughout my life. The Giving Tree and The Missing Piece Meets the Big O are huge influences on my life.

    19 Jun 2009 Reply
  • ErzengelM

    Oh my God! It's Shafutinsky!

    21 Apr 2009 Reply
  • abouc

    Freakin' at the Freakers Ball is one of the best albums Ive ever heard. Top notch musicians and hilarious lyrics make for a truly enjoyable listening experience.

    29 Nov 2007 Reply
  • arms4wardraise

    the world has been poorer with his passing

    26 Jun 2007 Reply
  • wheelsfalloff

    Hey I found that at an op-shop for 2 bucks! Its funny how Dr.Hook plummeted into a cheesy hole of suckiness once Shel stopped writing for them.

    18 Feb 2007 Reply
  • All 29 shouts

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