Bobby Lewis was an R&B singer who had a No. 1 hit in 1961 with “Tossin’ and Turnin’.”
“I couldn’t sleep at all last night…”
Lewis was best known for “Tossin’ and Turnin’,” the 1960 song that became a big hit in the summer of 1961. The energetic and catchy track shot to the top of the Billboard Hot 100. “Tossin’ and Turnin’” stayed at No. 1 for seven weeks and was named Billboard’s top single of the year. It was later featured in movies including “National Lampoon’s Animal House” and “American Graffiti,” and it was ranked No. 36 in Billboard’s all-time Hot 100. Lewis had a follow-up hit later in 1961 with “One Track Mind.” Though he didn’t have any other major chart successes, Lewis continued to perform throughout his life, including after he lost his sight in his later years.
Lewis on his song’s enduring popularity
“’American Graffiti’ kept it going. When it came out in ‘Animal House,’ I took my tape recorder to the theater. I wished I had a video camera. I taped it off the screen. What a beautiful scene — John Belushi in a garage all by himself, just sittin’ and listenin’ to ‘Tossin’ and Turnin’.’ I said, ‘What a guy.’” —from a 2011 interview with NJ.com
What people said about him
Full obituary:Rolling Stone