The mastermind that John Prine called, “One of the best songwriters in Nashville…make that the United States,” has passed away. Richard Dobson died on Saturday (Dec. 17) in a hospital in Switzerland at the age of 75, according to Rolling Stone.
Dobson had written for Johnny Cash, June Carter Cash, Carlene Carter, Guy Clark, David Allan Coe, and many more. Among the songs that he penned were Johnny Cash and June Carter’s “Baby Ride Easy,” Guy Clark’s “Forever, For Always, For Certain.” According to The Tennessean, Clark made it a habit to only record songs he wrote, but made an exception for the aforementioned song.
In addition to being a respected songwriter, Dobson also recorded upwards to 20 albums of his own and was called “a poet” in the Rodney Crowell song “Nashville 1972.”
Dobson lived in between Texas and Tennessee for many years before permanently relocating to his wife’s home country of Switzerland in 1999, though he made many trips back to Music City for work.
He wrote about his passion for music very eloquently in the biography section of his website, saying, “While you couldn’t call it a living, I wouldn’t trade the life. Music has enriched my existence immeasurably and brought so much joy, I would be a fool to complain about the hard times. A privileged and ancient profession, music can open doors and take you to places where rewards are not counted in money.”
Our thoughts and prayers are with his loved ones during this time.
Watch Dobson perform “Forever, For Always, and For Certain” in the 1970s film Heartworn Highways, a movie that chronicled songwriters including Dobson, Clark, Townes Van Zandt, and Steve Earle, to name a few.