Chart-topping country songwriter Craig Karp died on Aug. 15 in Nashville at age 76.
He was the co-writer of “If It Don’t Come Easy,” which hit No. 1 for Tanya Tucker in 1988. Karp also hit the top of the country hit parade with “There’s No Stopping Your Heart,” recorded by Marie Osmond in 1985.
Born Ronald Craig Karp, he came of age in California before embarking on his Nashville songwriting career. His earliest big success was “Second Hand Heart,” a No. 7 country hit of 1984 sung by Gary Morris. He co-wrote two big hits for Southern Pacific. “Honey I Dare You” was a 1988 single by the group that reached No. 5 on the country charts. “All Is Lost” made it to No. 19 on the A/C chart for Southern Pacific in 1989.
Craig Karp also co-wrote songs recorded by T.G. Sheppard, Lynn Anderson, Dave Gibson, Burrito Deluxe, Eddy Raven, Jimmy Fortune, Matt King, Rob Crosby, James House and Wayland Patton.
Carla Monday and Rustie Blue are among the independent-label acts who charted with Karp’s songs. More than two dozen such singers recorded his songs in 1980-2010. Several of them were European recording artists.
Craig Karp is survived by his wife Helen, daughter Casey, son Cody Blue and granddaughter LaDonna Eby. Arrangements are being handled by Woodbine Funeral Home. A celebration of his life will be held at a later date.
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