Rod Temperton, the songwriter best known for Michael Jackson’s Thriller, has passed away after a battle with cancer. Tempterton was 66 years old.
“Rod Temperton, British Composer and Musician, died last week at the age of 66 in London following a brief aggressive battle with cancer,” said Chairman & CEO of Warner/Chappell Jon Platt said in a statement. “His funeral was private. He was often referred to as The Invisible Man… His family is devastated and request total privacy at this, the saddest of sad times.”
Thoughts and prayers go out to Rod Temperton’s family and friends with his untimely passing. His legacy lives on in his songs. pic.twitter.com/zMD1kR4wAj
— Michael Jackson (@michaeljackson) October 5, 2016
Temperton penned some of Jackson’s most famous chart toppers including “Thriller,” “Rock With You,” “Off the Wall,” “Sweet Freedom,” “Burn This Disco Out,” and “Boogie Nights.” He also wrote for Aretha Franklin, Anita Baker, Quincy Jones and more. Temperton first rose to fame as the keyboardist and singer for the band Heatwave.
Fans and colleagues took to social media to mourn his loss.
We have lost a true genius…Rod Temperton your lyrics will live on and transcend forever.
— LLCOOLJ. (@llcoolj) October 5, 2016
Rod Temperton wrote all those amazing songs by himself. There were not 20 writers on them. Just one. Just Rod.
— Diane Warren (@Diane_Warren) October 5, 2016
Rest In Peace to legendary songwriter and producer Rod Temperton; the star of a story we’ll always tell.
— Phonte (@phontigallo) October 5, 2016
Heard the news that Rod Temperton has passed away.Absolutely brilliant songwriter and musician.Michael Jackson/George Benson &Heatwave rip
— Trevor Nelson (@DJTrevorNelson) October 5, 2016