Sha Na Na Singer Dennis Greene Dead at 66

Michael Putland/Getty Images
Dennis Greene (bottom row, third from left) photographed with Sha Na Na in Bardney, Lincolnshire on May 29, 1972. 

Original Sha Na Na member Dennis Greene passed away at age 66 last Saturday (Sept. 5), The New York Times reports.

Shortly after forming, Sha Na Na rocketed to fame thanks to a standout performance at Woodstock in 1969. Unlike many of the boundary-pushing performers at that counterculture gathering, Sha Na Na harkened back to a more innocent image of '50s greaser cool, and sang doo wop and early rock n' roll covers to match.

Playing on people's affection for a swiftly disappearing era, Sha Na Na were one of the first rock nostalgia acts, predating similar cultural phenomena like Grease and Happy Days. In fact, Sha Na Na appeared in the Grease movie and performed multiple songs, including "Tears on My Pillow" (with Greene on lead) and "Born to Hand Jive." Later, Sha Na Na starred in their own TV series from 1977 to 1981.

Greene left the group after 15 years to pursue a career in law, eventually earning a degree from Yale and becoming a law professor.