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LOS ANGELES (AP) — Jim Pike, co-founder and lead singer of The Lettermen, whose lush vocal harmonies made the Grammy-nominated trio one of the most popular vocal groups of the 1960s, has died at age 82.
Pike died June 9 at his home in Prescott, Arizona, his sister-in-law Becky Pike told The Associated Press on Wednesday. The cause was complications of Parkinson's Disease.
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Pike and Bob Engemann, a college buddy from Brigham Young University, formed The Lettermen in Los Angeles in 1961 with fellow singer Tony Butala.
They were looking for a name that would resonate with young people, Pike's younger brother, Gary, said Wednesday, when Engemann suggested The Lettermen. Butala noted that he'd briefly sung with a group using that name and he'd have to ask its leader for permission.
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"Tony called him up and he said he wasn't using it, so they said, 'Yay. We're going to use it," Gary Pike recalled with a laugh.
Later that year the group had its first hit with the Grammy-nominated "The Way You Look Tonight,"...
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