Burt Bacharach
American musician
Burt Bacharach
Burt F. Bacharach is an American pianist, composer and music producer. He is known for his popular hit songs and compositions from the mid-1950s through the 1980s, with lyrics written by Hal David, as part of the duo Bacharach and David. Many of their hits were produced specifically for, and performed by, Dionne Warwick. Following on with the initial success of this collaboration, Bacharach went on to produce hits with Dusty Springfield, Bobbie Gentry, Jackie DeShannon and others.
Biography
Burt Bacharach's personal information overview.
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News
News abour Burt Bacharach from around the web
The Ramones Way: Street At Rockers' High School Is Renamed For Band
NPR - 4 months
They're officially the coolest kids to come out of Forest Hills High in Queens, N.Y., and that's saying something. Other famous former students included Burt Bacharach, Paul Simon and Art Garfunkel.
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NPR article
Songbird Carole Bayer Sager Reveals How Fears Gave Way To Music And Love
Huffington Post - 4 months
William Shakespeare once wrote "if music be the food of love, play on." Few contemporary songwriters have generated such a feast of delicacies as Carol Bayer Sager. She has whipped up unrequited love songs, sweeping ballads and generational anthems into a culinary cultural smorgasbord. Sager's five-decade songwriting career is among the most impressive in all of the music business. But after writing hit after hit, Sager's most recent offering is not a song at all. She has penned her memoir appropriately titled, They're Playing Our Song, an homage of sorts to her 1978 hit Broadway show title. The book is filled with intimate details about the inspirations behind many of her songs. It also includes funny and candid anecdotal stories about dating, plastic surgery and a steamy romantic liaison she had in the early 1990's with real estate mogul Richard Cohen. She says writing her story was difficult. The book took two years to complete. Now, at 69, she says she was finally ...
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Huffington Post article
Burt Bacharach cancels 2 concerts to recover from broken arm
Yahoo News - 6 months
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Burt Bacharach is canceling two September concerts to recover from a broken arm.
Article Link:
Yahoo News article
Love Me Tender, Love Me True
Huffington Post - 9 months
Among the many hits written by lyricist Hal David and composer Burt Bacharach, one song had a curious history. When the songwriting team showed it to Dionne Warwick (a frequent collaborator), she initially turned it down. In 1965, the song was first released by Jackie DeShannon. After The Supremes recorded it in 1968, it became a major hit. Its message was pure and simple: "What the world needs now is love, sweet love It's the only thing that there's just too little of. What the world needs now is love, sweet love No, not just for some, but for everyone." As one monitors current events, Hal David's lyrics become more and more timely. From the political violence being stirred up by demagogues in a Presidential election year to the terrorist bombings in Europe and Africa; from the desperate plight of Syrian refugees to the bitter hatred driving North Carolina's odious Public Facilities Privacy & Security Act and Mississippi's vicious Religious Freedom Restoration Act, i ...
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Huffington Post article
Cigarettes on screen leave us breathless
Chicago Times - about 1 year
Like so many of our contemporaries, my brother and I grew up in a sea of harvest gold and avocado green, and the most interesting furniture in our Racine, Wis., house was a hi-fi that took entire old-growth forest to manufacture. Above that sea of green and gold, with Burt Bacharach and the original...
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Chicago Times article
Val Kinzler & Joe Vasta: Keeping the Rock 'n' Roll Faith in New York City
Huffington Post - about 1 year
"There is a spiritual theme to this record. We were all working really hard, getting ourselves out there, playing the clubs, developing our chemistry. But one day I was sitting at my dining room table just teary eyed - I was about to give up, I was losing my faith. The day before I had found two bibles in the trash - and I brought them upstairs thinking somebody's gonna need a bible, right? It's not like I'm a holy roller, but I am spiritual. Then I thought, 'damn it I'm gonna throw these bibles back in the garbage!' Suddenly the phone rang and it was Tate Records asking if I'd got the contract they'd sent. Contract! What contract? For some reason their email with the contract had gone to my spam folder ---and I took that as a sign, that you gotta have faith!" Val Kinzler "There is the faith in yourself as an artist, the faith in the power of rock 'n' roll, the faith borne of experience, and the faith in the music. Life is a learning experience. In music, you either have it in y ...
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Huffington Post article
Broadway Star Melissa Errico Shines On 'What About Today?'
Huffington Post - about 1 year
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Huffington Post article
Theater: Cracked "China Doll," A "C" For "School Of Rock," New Bacharach And New Standards
Huffington Post - about 1 year
CHINA DOLL * out of **** SCHOOL OF ROCK * 1/2 out of **** but *** out of **** on cute scale NEW YORK ANIMALS ** 1/2 out of **** THE NEW STANDARDS HOLIDAY SHOW*** out of **** OK, so the theatrical season is ending on a pretty grumpy note, with coal in the stockings of several shows. Luckily, music comes to the rescue. Here we go. CHINA DOLL * out of **** GERALD SCHOENFELD THEATRE Well, no reason to pile on. China Doll is not a good play. But let's make a few points: a bad play is a lot harder to memorize than a good play. At least that's always been my thinking. And even the greats rarely produce great works of art throughout their careers. Most often, they have a fertile period of ten to 15 years or so...and then they repeat themselves, plow the same land with decreasing yields and every once in a while do something good that reminds you of why they're great. Not something great, mind you. But something good. So David Mamet is not being lazy or indifferent. He's a pla ...
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Huffington Post article
Cuba, An Ally We Need
Huffington Post - about 1 year
"Let me say that the true revolutionary is guided by a great feeling of love. It is impossible to think of a genuine revolutionary lacking this quality. We must strive every day so that this love of living humanity will be transformed into actual deeds, into acts that serve as examples, as a moving force." Che Guevara People play pretty fast and loose with the term "revolutionary", it's a catch all phrase for anyone that is anti-establishment or goes against the societal grain. I inherently like people like that at a soul level, but its not quite the same thing as what Che Guevara was talking about in his famous quote. Che was talking about loving people for their own sake, and then doing something to help them. The revolutionary heart of love, that "moving force" Che speaks about is very rare indeed, but it is exactly the kind of heart we need to cultivate in the United States right now. This applies to many things and many different kinds of people, but in this case I'm talking abo ...
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Huffington Post article
Timeline
Learn about memorable moments in the evolution of Burt Bacharach
    FORTIES
  • 2015
    On June 27, 2015, Bacharach performed at the Glastonbury Festival UK.
    More Details Hide Details On July 15, Bacharach appeared on stage at the Menier Chocolate Factory to launch 'What's It All About? Bacharach Reimagined', a 90-minute live arrangement of his greatest hits. In his five-star review, Michael Coveney of Whatsonstage.com called it 'Supremely theatrical, musically enthralling and the best sort of tribute show to a legend in his own lifetime, the inimitable Burt Bacharach, master magician of Motown, lyrical pop and beautiful ballad.' Throughout the 1960s and 1970s, Bacharach was featured in a dozen TV musical and variety specials videotaped in the UK for ITC, several were nominated for Emmy awards for direction (by Dwight Hemion). The guests included artists such as Joel Grey, Dusty Springfield, Dionne Warwick, and Barbra Streisand. Bacharach and David did the score for an original musical for ABC-TV titled On the Flip Side, broadcast on ABC Stage 67, starring Ricky Nelson as a faded pop star trying for a comeback. While the ratings were dismal, the soundtrack showcased Bacharach's abilities to try different kinds of musical styles, ranging from (almost) 1960s rock, to pop, ballads, and Latin-tinged dance numbers.
  • 2013
    His autobiography, Anyone Who Had a Heart, was published in 2013.
    More Details Hide Details As arranger, conductor As composer Tribute albums
  • THIRTIES
  • 2009
    In early 2009, Bacharach worked with Italian soul singer Karima Ammar and produced her debut single Come In Ogni Ora.
    More Details Hide Details A #4 hit, the song has been heard during the 59th Sanremo Music Festival and also features him playing piano. Bacharach and David were awarded the 2011 Gershwin Prize for Popular Song bestowed by the Library of Congress, the first time that a songwriting team has been given the honor. David died the following year on September 1 at age 91.
  • 2007
    Bacharach and Dickinson had a daughter, Nikki Bacharach, who committed suicide in 2007 at the age of 40.
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  • 2006
    In late 2006, Bacharach appeared as the celebrity in a Geico auto insurance commercial, where he sings and plays the piano.
    More Details Hide Details He translates the customer's story through song ("I was hit in the rear!") In 2008, Bacharach featured in the BBC Electric Proms at The Roundhouse with the BBC Concert Orchestra. He performed similar shows in the same year at the Walt Disney Concert Hall and with the Sydney Symphony. Bacharach has been married four times. His first marriage was to Paula Stewart and lasted five years (1953–58). His second marriage was to actress Angie Dickinson, lasting for 15 years (1965–80).
    Bacharach appeared as a celebrity performer and guest vocal coach for contestants on the television show, "American Idol" during the 2006 season, during which an entire episode was dedicated to his music.
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  • 2005
    Bacharach's 2005 solo album At This Time was a departure from past works in that Bacharach penned his own lyrics, some of which dealt with political themes.
    More Details Hide Details Guest stars on the album included Elvis Costello, Rufus Wainwright, and hip-hop producer Dr. Dre. On October 24, 2008, Bacharach opened the BBC Electric Proms at The Roundhouse in London, performing with the BBC Concert Orchestra accompanied by guest vocalists Adele, Beth Rowley and Jamie Cullum. The concert was a retrospective look back at his six-decade career, including classics such as "Walk On By", "The Look of Love", "I Say a Little Prayer", "What the World Needs Now Is Love", "Anyone Who Had a Heart", "Twenty Four Hours from Tulsa" and "Make It Easy on Yourself", featuring Jamie Cullum.
  • 2003
    In 2003, he teamed with legendary singer and songwriter Ronald Isley to release the album Here I Am, which revisited a number of his 1960s compositions in Isley's signature R&B style.
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  • 2002
    During July 2002, Young was a guest vocalist at two of Bacharach's concerts, one at the Hammersmith Apollo and the other at Liverpool Pops.
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    Bacharach collaborated with Cathy Dennis in 2002 to write an original song for the Pop Idol winner Will Young.
    More Details Hide Details This was "What's in Goodbye", and it appears on Young's debut album From Now On.
  • TWENTIES
  • 1998
    In 1998, Bacharach co-wrote and recorded a Grammy-winning album with Elvis Costello, Painted from Memory, on which the compositions began to take on the sound of his earlier work.
    More Details Hide Details In 2006, he recorded a jazz album with Trijntje Oosterhuis and the Metropole Orchestra called The Look of Love (Burt Bacharach Songbook) which was released in November that year.
  • 1996
    In 1996, jazz pianist McCoy Tyner recorded an album of nine Bacharach standards that featured Tyner's trio with an orchestra arranged and conducted by John Clayton.
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  • 1993
    Bacharach married his current wife, Jane Hansen, in 1993; they have two children, a son, Oliver, and a daughter, Raleigh.
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  • 1990
    In 1990, Deacon Blue charted number 2 in the UK singles chart with an EP entitled "Four Bacharach & David Songs", with the first track, "I'll Never Fall in Love Again" receiving extensive media coverage.
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  • CHILDHOOD
  • 1975
    He and David reunited briefly in 1975 to write and produce Stephanie Mills's second album For the First Time released on Motown Records. By the early 1980s, Bacharach's marriage to Angie Dickinson had ended, but a new partnership with lyricist Carole Bayer Sager proved rewarding, both commercially and personally. The two married and collaborated on several major hits during the decade, including "Arthur's Theme (Best That You Can Do)" (Christopher Cross), co-written with Cross and Peter Allen; "Heartlight" (Neil Diamond); "Making Love" (Roberta Flack); "On My Own" (Patti LaBelle with Michael McDonald), and perhaps most memorably, "That's What Friends Are For" in 1985, actually the second single which reunited Bacharach and singer Warwick.
    More Details Hide Details The profits for the latter song were given to AIDS research. Bacharach's 1980s tunes showed a new sound. Other artists continued to revive Bacharach's earlier hits in the 1980s and 1990s. Examples included Luther Vandross' recording of "A House is Not a Home"; Naked Eyes' 1983 pop hit version of "(There's) Always Something There to Remind Me", and Ronnie Milsap's 1982 country version of "Any Day Now". Bacharach continued a concert career, appearing at auditoriums throughout the world, often with large orchestras. He occasionally joined Warwick for sold-out concerts in New York, Las Vegas, and Los Angeles.
  • 1973
    In 1973, Bacharach and David were commissioned to score the Ross Hunter-produced revival of the 1937 film, Lost Horizon for Columbia Pictures.
    More Details Hide Details The film was a critical and commercial disaster and a flurry of lawsuits resulted between the composer and the lyricist, as well as from Warwick. She reportedly felt abandoned when Bacharach and David refused to work together. Bacharach tried several solo projects (including the 1977 album Futures), but the projects failed to yield hits.
  • 1969
    The year 1969 marked, perhaps, the most successful Bacharach-David collaboration, the Oscar-winning "Raindrops Keep Falling on My Head", written for and prominently featured in the acclaimed film, Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid.
    More Details Hide Details The two were awarded a Grammy for Best Cast album of the year for "Promises, Promises" and the score was also nominated for a Tony award. There were other Oscar nominations for Best Song for "The Look Of Love", "What's New Pussycat" and "Alfie". Bacharach's music is characterized by unusual chord progressions, influenced by his background in jazz harmony, with striking syncopated rhythmic patterns, irregular phrasing, frequent modulation, and odd, changing meters. Bacharach has arranged, conducted, and produced much of his recorded output. An example of his distinctive use of changing meter is found in "Promises, Promises" (from his score for the musical of the same name). His style is sometimes also associated with particular instrumental combinations he is assumed to favor or to have favored, including the prominent use of the flugelhorn in such works as "Walk on By", "Nikki", and "Toledo".
  • OTHER
  • 1968
    Bacharach and David also collaborated with Broadway producer David Merrick on the 1968 musical Promises, Promises, which yielded two hits, the title tune and "I'll Never Fall in Love Again", for Dionne Warwick.
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  • 1967
    Bacharach composed and arranged the soundtrack of the 1967 film Casino Royale, which included "The Look of Love", performed by Dusty Springfield, and the title song, an instrumental Top 40 single for Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass.
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  • 1966
    The Bacharach/David composition "My Little Red Book", originally recorded by Manfred Mann for the film What's New Pussycat?, and promptly covered by Love in 1966, has become a rock standard; however, according to Robin Platts' book "Burt Bacharach and Hal David", the composer did not like Love's version.
    More Details Hide Details The title of the song is likely a tongue-in-cheek reference to Mao Zedong's Little Red Book, which was first published by the Communist Party of China in April 1964.
  • 1965
    Bacharach released his first solo album in 1965 on the Liberty Records label. "Hit Maker!
    More Details Hide Details Burt Bacharach Plays His Hits" was largely ignored in the US but rose to #3 on the UK album charts, where his version of "Trains and Boats and Planes" had become a top 5 single. In 1967, Bacharach signed as an artist with A&M Records, recording a mix of new material and re-arrangements of his best-known songs. He recorded for A&M until 1978. Other singers of Bacharach songs in the '60s and '70s included Bobby Vinton ("Blue on Blue"); Dusty Springfield ("The Look of Love" from Casino Royale), (a cover of Dionne Warwick's "Wishin' and Hopin); Cilla Black (a cover of Dionne Warwick's "Anyone Who Had a Heart"), the Delfonics, and Cher ("Alfie" - originally recorded by Cilla Black); The Shirelles, The Beatles ("Baby, It's You"); The Carpenters ("(They Long to Be) Close to You"); Aretha Franklin ("I Say a Little Prayer"); Isaac Hayes ("Walk on By", from the Hot Buttered Soul album); B. J. Thomas ("Raindrops Keep Falling on My Head", "Everybody's Out of Town"); Tom Jones ("What's New Pussycat? "); Engelbert Humperdinck ("I'm a Better Man"); Sandie Shaw ("Always Something There to Remind Me"); Jack Jones ("Wives and Lovers"); Jackie DeShannon ("What the World Needs Now Is Love"); Gene Pitney ("Only Love Can Break a Heart", "The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance", "24 Hours from Tulsa" and "True Love Never Runs Smooth"); Herb Alpert, ("This Guy's in Love with You"); Sergio Mendes & Brasil '66 ("The Look of Love"); The Stylistics, ("You'll Never Get To Heaven If you Break My Heart"); Jerry Butler, the Walker Brothers ("Make It Easy on Yourself"); and the Fifth Dimension ("One Less Bell to Answer").
  • 1963
    Bacharach also worked with other lyricists at first, including Bob Hilliard and Hal David's brother, Mack David but he and Hal David decided to form an exclusive writing partnership together in 1963.
    More Details Hide Details Bacharach has said what really got his career going, was when Calvin Carter,who at the time was chief of A&R at Vee-Jay Records, called saying that Jerry Butler wanted to do his song Make it Easy on Yourself and asked him to come out to New York and take charge of recording the song. It was the first time that Bacharach was in control of the whole recording process of one of his own songs. He says "I just went from there" In the early and mid-1960s, Bacharach wrote well over a hundred songs with David. He produced a number of songs on New York soul singer Lou Johnson, including the original recordings of "Always Something There To Remind Me", "Kentucky Bluebird (Message To Martha)" and "Reach Out For Me", but the two were mainly associated throughout the decade with Dionne Warwick, a conservatory-trained vocalist. Bacharach and David started writing a large portion of their work with Warwick in mind, leading to one of the most successful teams in popular music history.
  • 1957
    In 1957, Bacharach and lyricist Hal David met while at the Brill Building (which Bacharach described as a "music factory") in New York City, and began their writing partnership.
    More Details Hide Details Almost a year later, they received a significant career breakthrough when their song "The Story of My Life" was recorded by Marty Robbins for Columbia Records, becoming a number 1 hit on the U.S. country music chart and reaching #15 on the Billboard Hot 100 in late 1957. Soon afterwards, "Magic Moments" was recorded by Perry Como for RCA Records, and became a number 4 U.S. hit in February of that year. These two songs were back-to-back No. 1 singles in the UK ("The Story of My Life" in a version by Michael Holliday), giving Bacharach and David the honor of being the first songwriters to have written consecutive No. 1 UK singles.
  • 1946
    Bacharach was born in Kansas City, Missouri, and grew up in the Forest Hills section of New York City, graduating from Forest Hills High School in 1946.
    More Details Hide Details He is the son of Irma M. (née Freeman) and Mark Bertram "Bert" Bacharach, a well-known syndicated newspaper columnist, His family was Jewish, he writes in his biography, and adds that "no one in my family went to synagogue or paid much attention to being Jewish.... but the kids I knew were Catholic... I was Jewish but I didn't want anybody to know about it." Bacharach showed a keen interest in jazz as a teenager, disliking his classical piano lessons, and often using fake ID to gain admission into 52nd Street nightclubs such as Spotlite, and listened avidly to bebop musicians such as Dizzy Gillespie and Charlie Parker, who were a major influence on him. Bacharach studied music (Bachelor of Music, 1948) at Montreal's McGill University, under Helmut Blume, at the Mannes School of Music, and at the Music Academy of the West in Montecito, California. During this period he studied a range of music, including jazz harmony, which has since been important to songs which are generally considered pop music. His composition teachers included Darius Milhaud, Henry Cowell, and Bohuslav Martinů. Bacharach cites Milhaud as his biggest influence and has said, "Before I went into the service during the Korean War I studied with Milhaud at the Music Academy of the West which was a summer program. I wrote a 'Sonatina for Violin, Oboe and Piano.'
  • 1928
    Born on May 12, 1928.
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Original Authors of this text are noted here.
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