Birthday: Terry Jacks

Though he sang in the pop band the Poppy Family, which had a few hits in the late '60s, Terry Jacks is best known for "Seasons in the Sun," a 1974 solo smash sung from the perspective of a dying man.

Jacks was born March 29, 1944, in Winnipeg, Manitoba. He sang and played guitar in the Canadian group the Chessmen in the early '60s. Jacks next joined his future wife, Susan Pesklevits, in the groups Powerline and Winkin' Blinkin' and Nob. The pair then formed the Poppy Family to record his songs.

The Poppy Family scored with the U.S. pop hits "Which Way You Goin' Billy?" — #2 in 1970, "That's Where I Went Wrong" and "Where Evil Grows." The band split in 1973 and the Jackses divorced.

The following year Jacks went solo with "Seasons in the Sun" (RealAudio excerpt). He had suggested the Beach Boys record the song — written by French singer/composer Jacques Brel and translated by poet Rod McKuen — when he was playing on a session with them, but they declined. Jacks' version went to #1 in the U.S. and England.

After two more minor hits, Jacks played in a few short-lived bands and produced for others, before leaving music for environmental work.

Other birthdays Wednesday: Bobby Kimball (Toto), 53; Perry Farrell (Jane's Addiction, Porno for Pyros), 41; John Popper (Blues Traveler), 33.