Nickolas Ashford has become part of the myths of music. He was 70 years old; author, among other things, of “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough” and “I’m Every Woman” written and performed together with his wife Valerie Simpson.

Born in 1941 in South Carolina, Ashford met Valerie in the early 1960s when she moved to New York.

She sang to make ends meet and Valerie Simpson played the piano and was a choir member of the White Rock Baptist Church. The two began dating and writing songs. The first hit came in 1966, when Ray Charles sang their song “Let’s Go Get Stoned”.

They married in 1974 while continuing to write a series of hits for the prestigious Motown Records label. There are really many pieces that the duo wrote, starting with “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough” which had as interpreters, for a duet that has remained in history, none other than Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell who also sang “You’re All I Need to Get By ”revived in 1968 by Dionne Warwik and 2 years later by Diana Ross.

Later Gloria Gaynor also gave her voice to this piece composed by Ashford and Simpson.

The creative genius of Nickolas created pieces like “Ain’t Nothing like The Real Thing”, “Send It”, “Found a Cure”, “Don’t Cost You Nothing”.

Think that “I’m Every Woman” was sung by Chaka Khan and later by Whitney Houston. It was also the opening track of “Oprah Winfrey’s TV Talk Show”. In 2002 Ashford and Simpson were fully inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame.

With the death of Nickolas Ashford, music loses one of the most popular composers.

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