On Wednesday, Burt Bacharach died at the age of 94, and music lovers from around the world have spoken out to celebrate the beloved songwriter and his catalogue of hits. One particularly heartfelt comment came in a statement from Dionne Warwick, his longtime collaborator.
“Burt’s transition is like losing a family member,” she said. “These words I’ve been asked to write are being written with sadness over the loss of my Dear Friend and my Musical Partner.”
“On the lighter side we laughed a lot and had our run-ins, but always found a way to let each other know our family, like roots, were the most important part of our relationship,” she added. “My heartfelt condolences go out to his family, letting them know he is now peacefully resting, and I too will miss him.”
Warwick and Bacharach first met in 1961, while Warwick was working as a session musician with her sister, Dee Dee Warwick, and aunt Cissy Houston. “Right from the first time I ever saw Dionne, I thought she had a special kind of grace and elegance that made her stand out,” Bacharach wrote of their first meeting in his 2013 memoir, Anyone Who Had a Heart. “There was just something in the way she carried herself that caught my eye. To me, Dionne looked like she could be a star.”
Warwick later did her first solo recordings with Bacharach and lyricist Hal David, and her first single, “Don’t Make Me Over,” was recorded in August 1962. According to Variety, the trio had 33 hits reach the Billboard charts between 1962 and 1971, including seven that went to the Top 10. One of Bacharach and Warwick’s last collaborations to chart was “That’s What Friends Are For” in 1985, and they continued to perform together well into the 21st century.
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