L to R – Sheilah Kent, Artie Wayne, and Allan Rinde in 1972

It’s always hard for me to write about a friend who’s passed away, but especially hard to write about someone I have so much history with like Sheilah Kent. In 1965, that beautiful California Girl married this aspiring songwriter/artist from the Bronx during a time when inter-racial marriages were against the law in most states.

We had known each other for only two months, and spent the next three years growing up together, which inspired me to write dozens of songs…including 3000 MILES By Brian Hyland

3000 MILES

Was I wrong to think that you…could live like I’m accustomed to?

Your Daddy’s rich…you could’ve married a…millionaire or dignitary

But you chose me…Are you happy? Or sometimes is your mind

3000 MILES AWAY…3000 MILES AWAY

To a life that could’ve been…a wife you could’ve been,

I can just give you love…but is that good enough?

When there’s a tear in your eye…it makes me almost wanna’ die

I think of what you threw away to live…hand to mouth from day to day

And I wonder do…you think of it too? Sometimes is your mind

3000 MILES AWAY…3000 MILES AWAY

To a life that could’ve been…a wife you could’ve been,

I can just give you love…but is that good enough?

So I must love you a little bit more, kiss you a little bit more

And hope you’re satisfied…so you won’t wander…

3000 MILES AWAY…3000 MILES AWAY

To a life that could’ve been…a wife you could’ve been,

I can just give you love…but is that good enough?

Words and Music by Art Wayne Copyright 1966/2007 BMG Music

At Mercury records, Sheilah worked as a secretary for producers, Luchi DeJesus (Miriam Makeba), Dennis Lambert (Freddie and the Dreamers), Artie Kornfeld (The Cowsills), and Jerry Ross (Bobby Hebb, Keith, Jay and the Techniques) while we socialized with them and their wives, I also wrote songs with her bosses.

When we divorced in 1968, I moved to California, while she stayed in New York and ran Jerry Ross’ office at Heritage records, and later worked with Artie Kornfeld again when he and Michael Lang put on Woodstock. When I ran A&M’s publishing in 1974, I hired Sheilah as my personal assistant. By this time, she not only had highly developed managerial and organizational skills, but also had a rapport with creative and business people that was second to none.

Sheilah, who once had been the inspiration for some of my deepest songs, had become one of my closest friends. We always had each others backs, as well as each others shoulder to cry on. In the late ‘70s, I was ecstatic when she married actor David Warner (“Time After Time”, “Titanic”). Although their marriage didn’t work out they produced a son, Luke, who I met as a small child.

It was Luke who E-mailed me of his mothers passing and although we never met I felt a connection there. My deepest sympathy goes out to all of her family and friends, who will surely miss her.

Sheilah Kent R.I.P. Rock In Perpetuity

Respectfully with much love, Artie

Here’s a song I wrote with Patti Dahlstrom, for our friend Jim Croce the night his plane crashed…I dedicated it to my mother when she passed away…and now to Sheilah who will always be in my heart.

Copyright 2010 by Artie Wayne http://artiewayne.wordpress.com/about-artie-wayne/

Special thanks to Heather MacRae for helping me put this tribute together.

If you have a comment to make about Sheilah, please do so in the space provided below. I’ll make sure her family will get each and every one.

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