According to Billboard, "Into the Night" singer Benny Mardones has died at the age of 73.

We know Mardones's "Into the Night" and other songs he has written and performed, but many of us don't know much more about him than his music career.

Originally from Cleveland, home of the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, Mardones moved to Maryland where he enlisted in the military and served during the Vietnam war. According to Billboard, after being discharged from the military he moved to NYC to pursue songwriting and wrote for greats like Brenda Lee and Tommy James (of the Shondells fame).

A few minor hits during his career paled in comparison to his monster "Into the Night" which, unbelievably, only reached #11 on the charts. That song, though, wasn't without controversy: the opening line of "She's just 16 years old, leave her alone..." drew a lot of attention. Mardones was in his 30s when he wrote and released that song, so it made some uncomfortable. He explains his (purely platonic) relationship with "Heidi", the inspiration for the song, in the following audio:

Mardones continued to perform locally in the NYC area with a strong following, even after his Parkinson's diagnosis. It was that disease that, eventually, forced him to stop performing.

He is survived by his wife, son, and one sister.

Thanks for the music, Benny. RIP.



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