Dennis Greene, Sha Na Na singer who became law professor, dies at 66

Dennis Greene

Dennis Greene poses for a photo at the University of Oregon in Eugene, where he was a law school professor, on May 6, 1998.

(Associated Press)

Dennis Greene, a founding member of the doo-wop group Sha Na Na who later became a movie studio executive and then a law professor, has died at the age of 66.

Greene died Saturday in Columbus, Ohio, after a brief illness, according to his nephew, Edward Robinson.

Sha Na Na, whose brand of retro ‘50s music seemed to resonate with listeners, drew a huge following after performing at Woodstock in 1969 and in the 1978 movie “Grease.”

But Greene, who was born in New York City, had long been more interested in a career in law than performing nostalgic tunes from his youth.


“Being a rock star was never something that was particularly interesting to me,” Greene said in a interview in 1998, when he was a law school professor at the University of Oregon

Robinson said his uncle left Sha Na Na in 1984 to study law. He earned a master’s degree at Harvard and a law degree at Yale before going to work as a vice president at Columbia Pictures, where he worked on Spike Lee’s 1990 film “School Daze.”

He taught law at various universities, most recently at the University of Dayton.

Get our Today's Headlines newsletter