Known for I'll Always Be In Love With You and Alabamy Bound, which was covered by Dean Martin, Ray Charles, and many others.
He used to sell newspapers to give his family an extra income and was forced to quit elementary school to do so.
He was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1975.
He married Nan Hinken when he was 21 years old, and they had two sons.
He collaborated with Ella Fitzgerald, Les Brown, Ray Henderson, and Harry Warren.