Songwriter Who Wrote 'Thriller' Dead at 66

Rod Temperton dies in London
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 5, 2016 11:06 AM CDT
In this March 29, 2012 file photo, songwriter Rod Temperton and his wife Kathy attending a Teenage Cancer Trust concert at the Royal Albert Hall in London.   (Yui Mok/PA via AP, File)
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(Newser) – Anyone who's ever joyously sung, "'Cause this is THRILLER!" at a Halloween party was singing the work of Rod Temperton, though they may not have known it. And now the songwriter behind Michael Jackson's "Thriller" and more of his big hits, including "Off the Wall" and "Rock With You," has died. His family says Temperton died of cancer at age 66 in London last week, the AP reports. In addition to Jackson, Temperton had worked with Aretha Franklin, Herbie Hancock, Anita Baker, and producer Quincy Jones, and was sometimes called "the invisible man" because of his work behind the scenes. (Read more obituary stories.)

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