Hoyt Wayne Axton (b. 1938 - d. 1999 ) , was a popular American folk/country/ pop singer born in Duncan Oklahoma and who died at age 61 in Bitteroot Montana. He achieved platinum success as a solo act & songwriter in the music biz, but also eventually turned movie and tv actor. His best known roles were as the protagonist's father in the 80's children's films "Gremlins" and "The Black Stallion". His behind the scenes accomplishments included penning Three Dog Night's biggest song "Joy To The World" and many other hits for acts such as Ringo Starr and Cher during his heyday in the 60's and 70's.