Posted Sept. 06, 2012, at 9:17 p.m.
South, whose real name was Joseph Souter, died at his home in Buford, Ga., northeast of Atlanta, according to Marion Merck of the Hall County Coroner’s office. Merck said South died from natural causes stemming from a heart attack.
“He’s one of the greatest songwriters of all time,” said Butch Lowery, president of the Lowery Group, which published South’s music. “His songs have touched so many lives. He’s such a wonderful guy and loved by many.”
South was an inductee in the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame and the Georgia Music Hall of Fame.
South’s song “Down in the Boondocks” was a 1965 hit for singer Billy Joe Royal. South worked as a session guitar player on recordings such as Aretha Franklin’s “Chain of Fools,” and on albums such as Bob Dylan’s “Blonde on Blonde” and LPs by Eddy Arnold and Marty Robbins.
www.criticaljazz.com sends heartfelt sympathies to South's family, friends and fans across the globe. On a personal note, I interviewed Joe South while working as a disc jockey and found him to be one of the nicest and most genuine entertainers I have ever met. The loss to the music world will be felt and Joe South will certainly be missed.