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Jimmy Norman, Singer Who Worked With Marley and Hendrix, Dies at 74 - NYTi...

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November 25, 2011

Jimmy Norman, R&B Singer Who Worked With Marley and Hendrix, Dies at 74

Jimmy Norman, a rhythm-and-blues singer and songwriter who worked with Bob Marley and Jimi Hendrix early in their careers and was involved in a longstanding dispute over songwriting credit for the song “Time Is on My Side,” died on Nov. 8 in Manhattan. He was 74. The cause was lung disease, said his daughter Missy Scott. Mr. Norman, whose recording career began in the late 1950s, had minor success as a solo act, with two of his songs reaching the Top 40 on Billboard’s R&B chart: “I Don’t Love You No More (I Don’t Care About You)” in 1962 and “Can You Blame Me” in 1966. But he found a niche in music history through his encounters with other musicians. In 1966 Hendrix played guitar on at least one of Mr. Norman’s songs, “That Little Old Groovemaker,” and in 1968 a young Marley stayed with Mr. Norman on a visit to New York. More than 30 years later, a cassette tape of Marley and Mr. Norman singing together on that visit was sold at Christie’s for $26,290. But Mr. Norman is best known for his efforts to gain credit for contributing lyrics to “Time Is on My Side,” originally written by Jerry Ragovoy. In its first recording, by the trombonist Kai Winding in 1963, the song had only a handful of words. A year later the singer Irma Thomas recorded a version with a full set of lyrics, and on initial pressings Mr. Norman, who said he had been hired by a producer to add lyrics, was credited as a co -writer. Ms. Thomas’s recording became the basis of the Rolling Stones’ hit, which reached the Top 10 later in 1964, but by then Mr. Norman’s name had disappeared from the credits and would never reappear. Mr. Ragovoy died in July at 80. Mr. Norman made many attempts to get credit on “Time Is on My Side,” which would have entitled him to substantial royalties. In 1994 the song’s publisher, Warner/Chappell, acknowledged in a letter that Mr. Norman had “changed some of the lyrics” to the song


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