Last night on "American Idol," Elliott Yamin sang "A Song For You." He and everyone else referred to it as a Donny Hathaway song. It's not.
It was written by Leon Russell, a legendary (and somewhat strange) studio musician and solo performer, who wrote and recorded it for his 1970 debut album. It was a mainstay of album rock radio for a couple of decades, and is included on his "Retrospective" album along with other classics like "Tight Rope," "Delta Lady," "Lady Blue," and "This Masquerade" -- many of which were covered by other singers, but the credit should go to the man who originated them. Nothing against Donny Hathaway, but that man is Leon Russell. He's not only still alive, but still touring (in fact, he was just here in St. Louis a couple of weeks ago).