The news of the death of the singer, whose full name is Billy Joe Thomas, was brought by his publicist Jeremy Westby. Thomas announced in March that he had been diagnosed with lung cancer and succumbed to the disease on Saturday at his home in Arlington, Texas.
A native of Oklahoma, he made his mark on the music scene for the first time in 1966 with a gospel adaptation of Hank Williams’ song song I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry, after which he sold millions of records and sang hits in various genres. His most famous songs include I just can’t help believing and Hooked on a feeling.
But the most famous is certainly the whimsical ballad Raindrops keep fallin ‘on my head from 1969. The song, written by Burt Bacharach and Hal David, topped the charts in the United States and Canada and was included in the western soundtrack of Butch Cassidy and Sundance Kid. Oscar for Best Song in a Movie.