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I first knew I wanted to be a songwriter when I was 11 or 12. I read a book on songwriting where each chapter was written by a composer or lyricist from the 1930s and 40s. My favorite chapters were written by Johnny Mercer and Hoagy Carmichael. They're probably still my two favorite songwriters.
My music and lyrics have been praised by Carly Simon, Broadway's Charles Strouse, rock legend Ric Derringer, and jazz diva Tierney Sutton. (I've actually written 3 songs with Tierney's pianist, Christian Jacob.)
My parents were both creative types. My dad was a photographer, non-fiction writer, and brilliant amateur jazz pianist. My mother was a piano teacher, novelist, and prize-winning poet.
I majored in film and theater in college, worked as DJ in Top-40 radio for 15 years (starting in 1968, right out of high school), then moved to New York when I was in my early 30s. In NYC I made my living as an actor for about 12 years, and still do radio commercials and TV voiceovers. I'm now a well-known New York dog trainer, a best-selling mystery novelist, a songwriter and music publisher.
I've played at the Troubador in Hollywood, Folk City, The Bitter End, and Cleopatra's Needle in New York City. I also wrote the title songs for two independent films you've probably never heard of.
I'm currently working on a CD of "Sinatra songs," all written or co-written by me.