Jerry Jeff Walker , the singer-songwriter known for penning the hit “Mr. Bojangles” and as a pillar of Texas’ country music scene, has died, according to published reports. He was 78.
Walker was born in Oneonta, New York March 16, 1942 . His maternal grandparents played for square dances in the Oneonta area, with his grandmother, Jessie Conroe, playing piano, and grandfather playing fiddle. During the late 1950s, Crosby was a member of a local Oneonta teen band called The Tones.
Walker is best known as the tunesmith behind “Mr. Bojangles,” which was a hit for Nitty Gritty Dirt Band in 1970 and for Sammy Davis Jr. in 1972. Walker first recorded the song in 1968 for his album of the same name.
Last single for him was Keep Texas Beautiful at 1994.
Walker’s “Mr. Bojangles” (1968) is perhaps his best-known and most-often covered song.
It is about an obscure alcoholic but talented tap-dancing drifter who, when arrested and jailed in New Orleans, insisted on being identified only as Bojangles (the nickname of famed dancer Bill Robinson).