We were deeply saddened this morning to hear about the death of internationally renowned and much loved songwriter Ralph Murphy. No stranger to IMRO, having visited Ireland annually for many years to participate in songwriting masterclasses and workshops. Always generous with his time and advice to songwriters at all stages for their careers, countless IMRO members have benefited from his guidance and support over the years.
A Hall of Fame Canadian songwriter, Ralph Murphy achieved near-legendary status in Nashville through his career as a performer, producer, songwriter, publisher, and most recently, Vice President, International and Domestic Membership, ASCAP.
He had his first UK Number One in 1965 with ‘Call My Name,’ recorded by James Royal. Other hits followed with acts like Vanity Fair and The Brotherhood of Man.
In 1969 Ralph moved to New York, where he started two successful record labels. Among the many acts he produced during that time were legendary Canadian Rockers, April Wine, for whom he produced two platinum albums. He had a country hit in 1972 by Jeanie C. Riley, ‘Good Enough To Be Your Wife’.
With Roger Cook, he formed the Picalic Group and Pic-A-Lic Music Publishing and going on to publish or write more than twenty Number One records and was publisher for Song of The Year, ‘Talking In Your Sleep’ by Crystal Gayle. Pic-A-Lic became one of the most successful independent publishers in Nashville and was eventually sold to EMI.
His songs have been recorded by many artists including, Crystal Gayle, Shania Twain, Annihilator, Randy Travis, and many more.
In 2006 Ralph had success in the UK charts with ‘21st Century Christmas’ (co-written by Paul Brady), a No. 2 for Cliff Richard and again in 2011 in the Canadian Indie Charts with a No. 1 song ‘Working at Christmas’, performed by Paul Brady and Terri Clark, written by Keith Donald, Ralph Murphy, and Paul Brady. He was also an instructor for the respected Nashville Songwriters Association International Song Camps.
He is survived by his wife Louise and children Shawn and Kerry.
Farewell dear friend …