Lee Hazlewood: 1928-2007

The pop svengali's obituary

Lee Hazlewood, the pop svengali who wrote the Nancy Sinatra hit ‘These Boots Are Made For Walkin”, died of cancer in Las Vegas on Saturday (August 4). He was 78.

Hazlewood, originally from Oklahoma, was the man credited with much of the success of Sinatra’s career – modelling her image and writing songs for her. He wrote and produced nine albums in total for her.

After writing songs as a child, Hazlewood began his musical career as a DJ in Arizona in 1953.


In 1963 he released a solo album, ‘Trouble Is A Lonesome Town’, and went on to write songs for other artists. Elvis Presley, Nick Cave, Primal Scream and Courtney Love have all covered tracks of his.

After a period living reclusively in Sweden, Hazlewood began releasing more records in the 1970s, including the legendary ‘Cowboy In Sweden’, and by the 1990s his solo work developed a cult following.

In 1999 he performed at the Nick Cave-curated Meltdown festival.

His last solo album, ‘Cake Or Death’ – the titled inspired by comedian Eddie Izzard – was released last year.

Hazlewood is survived by his son Mark, daughters Debbie and Samantha, and his wife Jeane.

Meanwhile, send your memories and tributes for Hazlewood to news@nme.com with Lee as the subject and we’ll print the best.