He died at his home in Lewisburg, Tennessee on Sunday (22Nov15).

Born Theodore Clifford Harris in Florida, he learned to play the guitar at the age of eight and started writing songs by 12.

He moved to country music mecca Nashville when he was 20 and pursued work with Silver Star, the publishing firm behind his favourite artist, Hank Snow. His idol later scored hits with Harris-penned tracks My Lucky Friend and Chasin' a Rainbow in 1959.

Harris went on to launch his own Harbot Music Publishing company in 1965, and worked with Carl Belew, who turned his Crystal Chandelier tune into a chart smash later that year (65). He also wrote Ferlin Husky's Once, Roy Drusky's Rainbows and Roses, and Dottie West's Paper Mansions, in addition to Bobby Lord's You and Me Against the World, Charley Pride's The Happiness of Having You, and The Hand That Rocks the Cradle (Rules the World), which became a huge hit for Glen Campbell in 1987.

He was inducted into the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1990 and retired in 2001.