Word came out Sunday that Andrew Gold passed away Friday from a heart attack. He’s probably best known now as the “Thank You For Being A Friend” guy. The song was used for years as the “Golden Girls” theme. Gold told an interviewer it took an hour to write, and it was “his accountant’s favorite song.”
“It made me millions of dollars over the years, just because it’s one of those friends songs. There’s about five songs like “You’ve Got A Friend”. It made it into that area. So now I see it in like, cards. You open it up and there’s a little chip in there and it sings music, “Thank You For Being A Friend” and luckily it sings my version.”
“Friend” was his second big hit, a follow up to an even bigger song called “Lonely Boy.” A quick read of his bio reveals that, in fact, he was born on a summer’s day, 1951. He was only 59.
The music’s cool, but I still don’t get the lyrics, 34 years later. There’s a lot of pronoun shifting, or something, going on.
His father won an Academy Award for his musical score for Exodus. His mother was the singing voice of Natalie Wood in West Side Story, and Audrey Hepburn in My Fair Lady. Gold’s first big break was playing and touring with Linda Ronstadt. You hear his guitar on many of her big mid 70’s hits, like “You’re No Good.”
Gold’s years after the late-70’s spotlight faded included working as a producer, writer and sideman for Art Garfunkel, Nicolette Larson, Stephen Bishop, Vince Gill, Celine Dion, Aaron Neville, Wynonna Judd, James Taylor, Paul McCartney, Jackson Browne, Cher, and Brian Wilson. Professionally, he was never too lonely.
(Quote courtesy of an Andrew Gold interview published in http://www.classicbands.com/AndrewGoldInterview.html.)