Mark James

Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame and National Songwriters Hall of Fame inductee, Mark James, died on June 8, 2024 at the age of 83.

Penning more than 200 songs throughout his career with several enduring hits sprinkled in, James’ first taste of success came with B.J. Thomas' “The Eyes of a New York Woman,” followed shortly after by “Hooked on a Feeling” and “It’s Only Love.” After writing and releasing his own version of “Suspicious Minds,” which garnered little success, it was later famously recorded by Elvis Presley. It became the superstar’s last No. 1 hit and led to other late-career cuts from James, including “Raised on Rock” and “Moody Blue.” Elsewhere across his career, James wrote “Always on My Mind,” originally performed by Brenda Lee. A decade later Willie Nelson turned it into a country crossover smash, nabbing the Song of the Year and Country Song of the Year at the 1983 Grammy Awards.

With songs recorded by the likes of Dwight Yoakam, B.B. King, Eddy Arnold, Charlie McCoy, The Partridge Family, Ronnie Milsap and more, James' music has also been heard across a wide range of films, including Reservoir Dogs, Guardians of the Galaxy, Black Hawk Down, Kramer Vs Kramer, Honeymoon in Vegas, Breathless, Someone to Watch Over Me, Practical Magic and Frequency.