Paul Goddard, Bass Player With Atlanta Rhythm Section, Dies at 68

Paul Goddard (in background) and the Atlanta Rhythm Section in the early 1970s.

Paul Goddard, the bass player and a founding member of the stylish Southern rock band the Atlanta Rhythm Section, died Tuesday of cancer in Atlanta, the group's manager, Len Fico, told The Hollywood Reporter. He was 68.

Goddard performed on such ARS hits as “So Into You,” “Imaginary Lover,” “I’m Not Gonna Let It Bother Me Tonight,” “Do It or Die” and the remake of the Classics IV’s “Spooky.”

Rolling Stone magazine voted Goddard’s work on “Another Man’s Woman,” from the 1979 live album Are You Ready!, as one of the top five bass solos of all time.

“I knew Paul when he was a guitarist, and maybe that’s why his bass playing was so musical,” said Justo, who exited the band in 1972 to be replaced by the late singer Ronnie Hammond.  “And to go with that musicality was a unique sound that made him so identifiable to fans and other musicians as well. Yes, at one time he was ‘that big fat guy that played bass,’ but once he started playing, he wasn’t fat. He was a giant.”

Buddy Buie, a songwriter and guitarist for Classics IV, put the band together and produced, managed and wrote songs for ARS.

The band loved to tour, and they once played for President Jimmy Carter (and fellow Georgia native) at the White House.

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