Troggs singer Reg Presley dies of cancer at 71

Published on NewsOK Modified: February 5, 2013 at 11:03 am •  Published: February 5, 2013
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With its basic three-chord approach and driving beat, "Wild Thing" became a hit on both sides of the Atlantic and has been covered by literally hundreds of bands ever since.

The song was picked up not only by semi-skilled garage bands the world over — the lead guitar lines were easily copied — but also by masters like Jimi Hendrix and Bruce Springsteen who treasured the song's raw energy.

It even led to a successful novelty song, with a singer pretending to be Sen. Robert Kennedy "singing" the lyrics in Kennedy's distinctive voice.

The Troggs, all from the Andover area, had several other big hits, including "Love is All Around" and "With a Girl Like You."

They faded in the 1970s but their songs were revived in the 1990s when REM and Wet Wet Wet released covers of the Troggs' "Love Is All Around."

Presley, also a prolific songwriter, helped found the Troggs in the 1960s while he was working as a bricklayer.

Born Reg Ball, he took the stage name "Presley" at his manager's suggestion.

He announced his retirement in January, 2012 in an open letter to his fans thanking them for their support. He said at the time that he was receiving chemotherapy and not feeling "too bad."

He had a strong interest in crop circles, paranormal activity, and UFOs.

His daughter Karen told the music website WENN that she, her brother and her mother were with Presley when he died.

"We're absolutely heartbroken," she said.



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