POOKIE HUDSON, 72 Singer, songwriter for the doo-wop group the Spaniels
Pookie Hudson, 72, lead singer and songwriter for the doo-wop group the Spaniels, who lent his romantic tenor to hits including "Goodnight, Sweetheart, Goodnight" and influenced many other artists, died Tuesday at his home in Prince George's County of complications from cancer of the thymus.
Mr. Hudson, who lived in Capitol Heights, continued performing until last fall, when he learned that his cancer had returned after a remission. He made his last recordings in October for Uncloudy Christmas, a CD that will be released this fall, said his publicist, Bill Carpenter.
He was born Thornton James Hudson in Des Moines, Iowa. The Spaniels were formed at Roosevelt High School in Gary, Ind., where he was raised and began singing in church choirs.
The Spaniels' signature song was a rhythm-and-blues hit in 1954. The McGuire Sisters then rushed out a popular version of "Goodnight, Sweetheart, Goodnight." At the time, only black radio stations played Mr. Hudson's version, Mr. Carpenter said.