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“The songs should be like a little film, told in three or four minutes. Try to say things as simply as possible, which is probably the most difficult thing to do,” he said.

The New York-based writer often flew to Los Angeles, where he and Bacharach holed up for weeks of intense songwriting. They also conferred by telephone, a method that birthed “I Say a Little Prayer.”

When a song went nowhere, they stuck it in a desk drawer and left it there for months.

In a brief essay on his website, David recalled having an idea for a song for “at least two years before showing it to Burt.”

“I was stuck,” he wrote. “I kept thinking of lines like, `Lord, we don’t need planes that fly higher or faster …’ and they all seemed wrong. Why, I didn’t know. But the idea stayed with me.

“Then, one day, I thought of, `Lord, we don’t need another mountain,’ and all at once I knew how the lyric should be written. Things like planes and trains and cars are manmade, and things like mountains and rivers and valleys are created by someone or something we call God. There was now a oneness of idea and language instead of a conflict. It had taken me two years to put my finger on it.”

And so they had another smash: “What the World Needs Now is Love.”

David and Bacharach met when both worked in the Brill Building, New York’s legendary Tin Pan Alley song factory where writers cranked out songs to sell to music publishers. They scored their first big hit with “Magic Moments,” a million-selling record for Perry Como.

Their success transferred to film and theater, where they won an Oscar for “Raindrops Keep Fallin’ on My Head” (from the movie “Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid”), and Grammys and Tonys for the songs from the hit Broadway musical “Promises, Promises.”

But the hit-making team broke up after the 1973 musical remake of “Lost Horizon.” The pair and Warwick had devoted two years to the movie, which was scorned by critics and audiences. Bacharach then sequestered himself in his vacation home and refused to work.

Bacharach and David sued each other, and Warwick sued them both. The cases were settled out of court in 1979 and the three went their separate ways. They reconciled in 1992 for Warwick’s recording of “Sunny Weather Lover.”

David went on to collaborate successfully with other composers: John Barry with the title song of the James Bond film “Moonraker;” Albert Hammond with “To All the Girls I’ve Loved Before,” which Julio Iglesias and Willie Nelson sang as a duet; and Henry Mancini with “The Greatest Gift” in “The Return of the Pink Panther.”

David joined the board of the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers in 1974 and served as president 1980 to 1986. He was head of the Songwriters Hall of Fame from 2001 to 2011, and was chairman emeritus at his death.

“As a lyric writer, Hal was simple, concise and poetic _ conveying volumes of meaning in fewest possible words and always in service to the music,” ASCAP president, the songwriter Paul Williams, said in a statement. “It is no wonder that so many of his lyrics have become part of our everyday vocabulary and his songs… the backdrop of our lives.”

In May, Bacharach and David received the Library of Congress Gershwin Prize for Popular Song during a White House tribute concert attended by President Barack Obama. David, recovering from a major stroke in March, did not attend, but his wife accepted on his behalf.

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