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Jake Hooker, Co-Author of ‘I Love Rock ‘n’ Roll,’ Dies at 61

Jake Hooker, the guitarist for ’70s British band the Arrows and one of the writers of the classic anthem ‘I Love Rock ‘n’ Roll,’ died in California earlier this week. He was 61 years old.

As reported by Vintage Vinyl News, Hooker was born Jerry Mamberg in Haifa, Israel. He relocated to the United States as a child, and in the early 70′s, moved to England. There he met Alan Merrill, with whom he would form the band Streak, which later became the Arrows.

The group scored only two Top 40 hits in their career — 1974′s ‘A Touch Too Much‘ and ‘My Last Night With You,’ released the following year. They also released ‘I Love Rock ‘n’ Roll’ as a single in 1975, but the song failed to gain any significant traction. Six years later, however, it became a No. 1 hit for Joan Jett & the Blackhearts.

Despite their lack of blockbuster hits, the Arrows enjoyed two 14-week runs with their own show, ‘The Arrows Show,’ on England’s Granada Television in 1976 and 1977. In addition to the group performing their own original material, the program also played host to artists including Marc Bolan and the Bay City Rollers.

After the Arrows went their separate ways in 1977, Hooker moved back to the United States to pursue a career in management, publishing and production. He went on to write and produce numerous hits for soundtracks including ‘Flashdance,’ ‘Top Gun’ and ‘Rocky IV,’ which combined to sell more than 100 million records.

Hooker married actress Lorna Luft in 1977. The couple had two children before getting divorced in 1993, and recently celebrated the birth of their first grandchild.

Luft has released the following statement regarding Hooker’s passing: “After a weekend of such joy with the birth of our granddaughter Jordan Eloise Richards, I have learned that Jordan’s grandfather, my former husband Jake Hooker, passed away this morning. Jake was an accomplished musician and the father of my children. We are heartbroken. I have no other plans but to grieve with my children and be grateful for the gift that is our precious Jordan, my mother’s first great grandchild. We ask that you respect our privacy during this most difficult time.”

Next: See Other Rockers We've Lost in 2014

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