I'm a songwriter who's written a few hundred pop, rock and R&B songs, including some you may have heard on the radio or streaming services, like #1 hits "Crush" by Jennifer Paige and "That's What Love Is For" by Amy Grant, as well as Top 10 hits like "Nothin' At All" by Heart.
I also wrote the theme songs (words & music) for two popular animated Disney TV shows, "DuckTales" (the original and reboot) and "Chip 'n Dale: Rescue Rangers." DuckTales is currently airing in 162 countries. Since I was a kid, I wanted to travel the world and see as many places and experience as many cultures as possible, so to hear a song I wrote be sung in 34 different languages is an incredible thing.
My latest project is a new stage musical that I wrote with my good friend, actress Lesley Nicol. Featuring 10 original songs, "How the Hell Did I Get Here?" is based on her life and career and it's a show we're extremely proud of. Lesley starred as the memorable Mrs. Patmore on the international hit TV show "Downton Abbey" for six years, as well as its 2019 worldwide #1 box office smash film version and the upcoming 2022 sequel.
Lesley and I performed the show in London and Hong Kong and it was a blast, so we can't wait to bring the show to the renowned Pittsburgh Public Theater on January 26, 2022 for its North American debut. What's especially fun for me is that I get to accompany Lesley onstage on piano for the songs that we wrote together. We had the best time creating the show (basically, all we did was laugh) and really look forward to sharing it with audiences next year.
I've always loved musicals and I've previously written them for stage ("Butterfly" at the Goodspeed Opera House), film and TV (an all-sung CBS pilot titled "Shangri-La Plaza"), but for years pop songs were my primary focus. It's great to come full circle with this show. More U.S. dates after our 3-week run in Pittsburgh will be announced soon.
One of the most gratifying things I've experienced in my career are the reactions I receive when people find out I'm the writer of the “DuckTales” song. I get to hear great stories about their happy childhood memories of the song. And since the reboot, parents not only share their memories of the original version, but also tell me about the joy their own kids are getting from the song today. That's something I never would have dreamed of when I wrote it thirty years ago.
I also enjoy checking out the newest YouTube performances of the "DuckTales" song done by fans. Over 500,000 versions that have been uploaded so far and there are more to watch every month. As a writer, there is no greater compliment than to have that many people cover your work. I genuinely appreciate everyone's fondness for the song (and show), as well as their creativity.
I live in LA and love Southern California, but grew up a few hundred miles north in the Bay Area. (In the photo above, I'm taking a ferry ride from Tiburon to San Francisco). I wrote my first musical there for my fifth grade class to perform. That production actually made the local newspaper when it we put it on.
My love of music started even earlier. I can remember writing songs on our living room piano at the age of 5, so you could say music has always been in my blood. I was fortunate that my parents encouraged me to pursue my dream.
Creating music professionally for a few decades has been a fantastic experience. I do what I love and love what I do, and I'm grateful that my songs have resonated with enough people to allow me to have a career that's been so satisfying. I hope I get to meet some of you when Lesley and I do "How the Hell Did I Get Here?" next year on stage.
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