Norman Gimbel, the Oscar- and Grammy-winning lyricist whose career spanned Roberta Flack’s “Killing Me Softly With His Song” and the theme music to the Wonder Woman television series, died on Dec. 19, according to a post from the BMI website. He was 91.
“A truly gifted and prolific writer, Gimbel will be greatly missed by his friends and fans at BMI,” the tribute reads.
Gimbel won an Oscar in 1980 for Best Original Song, which he shared with David Shire for “It Goes Like It Goes” in the film Norma Rae. His other Oscar-nominated hits include “Ready to Take a Chance Again” from 1978’s Foul Play and “Richard’s Window” from 1975’s The Other Side of the Mountain.
His work with Flack on “Killing Me Softly With His Song” also won the Grammy in 1973 for Song of the Year.
A Brooklyn native-born in 1927, Gimbel famously wrote the words to “The Girl from Ipanema,” as well as the theme songs for shows like Happy Days, Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous, and Laverne & Shirley.
In addition to the big and small screens, Gimbel made his way to Broadway. He worked with Morris Charlap on 1958’s Whoop-Up and 1961’s The Conquering Hero.
Robert Folk, who collaborated with Gimbel on numerous songs, called him “an incredible talent; brilliant in every way, and one who had successfully navigated every genre in popular music.”