Desmond Child

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Desmond Child
Desmond Child at Lincoln Center's "American Songbook" (46416739514).jpg
Desmond Child performs as part of Lincoln Center's "American Songbook" series in February 2019
Background information
Birth nameJohn Charles Barrett
Born (1953-10-28) October 28, 1953 (age 66)
Gainesville, Florida, United States
Years active1975–present
Associated acts

Desmond Child (born John Charles Barrett; October 28, 1953) is an American songwriter and producer. He was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2008. He is the son of Hungarian father Joseph Marfy and of Cuban songwriter Elena Casals.


His hits as a songwriter include Kiss's "I Was Made for Lovin' You"; Joan Jett & the Blackhearts' "I Hate Myself for Loving You"; Bon Jovi's "You Give Love a Bad Name", "Livin' on a Prayer", [1] and "Bad Medicine"; Aerosmith's "Dude (Looks Like a Lady), "Angel", "What It Takes" and "Crazy"; Alice Cooper's "Poison"; and Ricky Martin's "The Cup of Life" and "Livin' la Vida Loca". [2]


Child's career started when he formed an R&B-influenced pop rock band, Desmond Child & Rouge in 1975 with singers Myriam Valle, Maria Vidal, and Diana Grasselli, backed by hired musicians. The band was known for their inclusion on the soundtrack to The Warriors in 1979, with the song "Last of an Ancient Breed", and for the Billboard #51 hit "Our Love is Insane". Their two albums received positive reviews [3] but sold poorly and the group disbanded in 1980. One member, Maria Vidal, had a hit in 1985 with "Body Rock". [4]

Artists Child has worked with include Kiss, Cher, Aerosmith, Bon Jovi, Bonnie Tyler, Dream Theater, Per Gessle, Ricky Martin, Selena Gomez, and Kelly Clarkson. Desmond is credited with discovering Troy Tuminelli and recommending him to Edgardo Diaz before Tuminelli landed in Menudo, and, eventually, on Guiding Light .[ citation needed ] He was the key partner in Alice Cooper's album Trash (1989). He was also responsible for the majority of song writing on Ratt's comeback album Detonator (1990).

Child scored a Billboard Top 40 hit in 1991 as a solo artist with "Love on a Rooftop," a song he had co-written with Diane Warren, originally recorded by Ronnie Spector, and later by Cher.

He produced Meat Loaf's album Bat Out of Hell III: The Monster Is Loose , and co-wrote six of its songs. [5]

Child wrote the song "Believe in Me" for Bonnie Tyler in 2012 and one year later it was selected as the Eurovision Song Contest entry for the United Kingdom. Following the contest, Tyler received two Eurovision Song Contest Radio Awards for Best Song and Best Singer, making her the first UK representative to win the award.

Child was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2008. [6] In 2013, he co-founded the Latin Songwriters Hall of Fame along with fellow Cuban-American composer Rudy Pérez. [7] Desmond's autobiography, Livin’ on a Prayer: Big Songs Big Life with David Ritz, is being released in early 2020.


Desmond Child & Rouge

"Our Love Is Insane" (#51, 1979) [8]


For and with other artists

entire album

Year Band/Artist Song(s) written/co-written/produced Album
1979 Kiss "I Was Made for Lovin' You" Dynasty
1980 Billy Squier "You Should Be High Love" The Tale of the Tape
1982 Cher "When the Love is Gone", "Walk With Me", "The Book of Love" I Paralyze
1984 Kiss "Heaven's on Fire", "Under the Gun", "I've Had Enough (Into the Fire)" Animalize
1985 Kiss "King of the Mountain", "Who Wants to Be Lonely", "I'm Alive", "Radar for Love", "UH! All Night" Asylum
1986 Bonnie Tyler "If You Were a Woman and I Was a Man", "Lovers Again" Secret Dreams and Forbidden Fire
1986 Bon Jovi "You Give Love a Bad Name", "Livin' on a Prayer", "Without Love", "I'd Die For You" Slippery When Wet
1987 Aerosmith "Angel", "Dude (Looks Like a Lady)", "Heart's Done Time" Permanent Vacation
1987 Cher "We All Sleep Alone", "Main Man", "Give Our Love a Fightin' Chance", "Perfection", "Working Girl" Cher
1987 Jimmy Barnes "Waitin' for the Heartache", "Walk on" Freight Train Heart
1987 John Waite "These Times are Hard for Lovers" Rover's Return
1987 Kiss "Bang Bang You", "My Way", "Reason to Live" Crazy Nights
1987 Jennifer Rush "Down to You", "Heart Wars" Heart Over Mind
1987 Ronnie Spector "Love on a Rooftop" Unfinished Business
1988 Kiss "Let's Put the X in Sex", "(You Make Me) Rock Hard" Smashes, Thrashes & Hits
1988 Bon Jovi "Bad Medicine", "Born to Be My Baby", "Blood on Blood", "Wild is the Wind" New Jersey
1988 Joan Jett & The Blackhearts "I Hate Myself for Loving You", "Little Liar", "You Want In, I Want Out" Up Your Alley
1988 Bonnie Tyler "Notes From America", "Hide Your Heart", "Save Up All Your Tears", "Take Another Look at Your Heart", also produced the album Hide Your Heart
1989 Aerosmith "What It Takes", "F.I.N.E." Pump
1989 Alice Cooper Entire album, including "Poison" Trash
1989 Animotion "Calling It Love" Room To Move
1989 Michael Bolton "How Can We Be Lovers?" and "Love Cuts Deep", also produced the album Soul Provider
1989 Bonfire "The Price of Loving You" Point Blank
1989 Cher "Just Like Jesse James", "Love on a Rooftop", "Emotional Fire", "Does Anybody Really Fall in Love Anymore?" Heart Of Stone
1989 Ace Frehley "Hide Your Heart" Trouble Walkin'
1989 Kiss "Hide Your Heart", "You Love Me to Hate You" Hot in the Shade
1989 Robin Beck "Hide Your Heart", "Don't Lose Any Sleep", "If You Were a Woman (And I Was a Man)", "Hold Back the Night", "Save Up All Your Tears", "Tears in the Rain" Trouble or Nothin'
1990 Ratt "Givin' Yourself Away", "Heads I Win, Tails You Lose", "Lovin' You's a Dirty Job", "One Step Away", "Shame Shame Shame" Detonator
1991 Kane Roberts Entire album Saints and Sinners
1991 Cher "Save Up All Your Tears" Love Hurts
1991 Michael Bolton "Forever Isn't Long Enough", "New Love" Time, Love & Tenderness
1991 Alice Cooper "Dangerous Tonight", "Might as Well Be on Mars" Hey Stoopid
1991 Joan Jett & The Blackhearts "Ashes in the Wind", "The Only Good Thing (You Ever Said Was Goodbye)", "Lie to Me", "Don't Surrender", "Goodbye" Notorious
1992 Bon Jovi "Keep the Faith", "I'll Sleep When I'm Dead" Keep the Faith
1993 Aerosmith "Crazy", "Flesh" Get a Grip
1993 Steve Vai "In My Dreams With You" Sex & Religion
1994 Joan Jett & The Blackhearts "As I Am", "You Got a Problem", "Brighter Day" Pure and Simple
1995 Bon Jovi "Something for the Pain", "This Ain't a Love Song", "Hearts Breaking Even", "Diamond Ring" These Days
1995 Chynna Phillips "I Live for You", "This Close", "Jewel in My Crown" Naked and Sacred
1995 Roxette "You Don't Understand Me" Don't Bore Us, Get to the Chorus!
1997 Aerosmith "Hole in My Soul" Nine Lives
1997 Chicago "All Roads Lead to You" The Heart of Chicago 1967–1998 Volume II
1997 Dream Theater "You Not Me" Falling into Infinity
1997 Robbie Williams "Old Before I Die" Life Thru a Lens
1997 Hanson "Weird" Middle of Nowhere
1998 Billie Myers "Kiss the Rain" Growing, Pains
1999 Bon Jovi "Real Life" EdTV Original Motion Picture Soundtrack
1999 Ricky Martin "Livin' La Vida Loca", "The Cup of Life" Ricky Martin
2000 Ricky Martin "She Bangs" Sound Loaded
2000 Sisqó "Thong Song" Unleash The Dragon
2002 Bon Jovi "All About Lovin' You", "Misunderstood", "The Distance" Bounce
2002 Sakis Rouvas "Ola Kala", "The Light", "Disco Girl", also produced the album Ola Kala
2002 Kelly Clarkson "Before Your Love" Thankful
2002 LeAnn Rimes "Life Goes On", "The Safest Place", "Suddenly", "Sign of Life", "Love Is an Army" Twisted Angel
2003 Clay Aiken "Invisible", "Run to Me" Measure of a Man
2003 La Ley "Más Allá" Libertad
2004 Alejandra Guzmán "Lipstick", "Sálvame", "Hoy Me Voy a Querer", "Tengo Derecho a Estar Mal", "Mundos", "Un Juego Más", "Tu Corazón", "Supersexitada" Lipstick
2004 Jesse McCartney "Because You Live" Beautiful Soul
2004 Hilary Duff "Who's That Girl" Hilary Duff
2004 Diana DeGarmo "Dreams" Blue Skies
2005 Bon Jovi "Bells of Freedom", "Dirty Little Secret", "These Open Arms" Have a Nice Day
2005 Carrie Underwood "Inside Your Heaven" Some Hearts
2005 Bo Bice N/A
2005 Vince Neil "Promise Me" -
2005 Amanda Stott "Homeless Heart" Chasing the Sky
2005 Lindsay Lohan "I Live for the Day" A Little More Personal (Raw)
2005 Marion Raven "October" Cut Off
2006 Marion Raven "Good 4 Sex" Heads Will Roll
2006 Meat Loaf "The Monster Is Loose", "Blind as a Bat", "Monstro", "Alive", "If God Could Talk", "What About Love?" Bat Out of Hell III: The Monster Is Loose
2006 Paul Stanley "All About You", "Lift", "Live to Win", "Wake Up Screaming", "Where Angels Dare" Live to Win
2007 Sebastian Bach "Falling into You" Angel Down
2007 Bon Jovi "(You Want to) Make a Memory" Lost Highway
2007 Scorpions "Hour I", "The Game of Life", "The Future Never Dies", "You're Lovin' Me to Death", "321", "Love Will Keep Us Alive", "We Will Rise Again", "Your Last Song", "Love Is War", "The Cross", "Humanity", "Cold" Humanity: Hour I
2008 Ace Young "Addicted", "A Hard Hand to Hold", "Where Will You Go", "How You Gonna Spend You Live", "The Girl That Got Away", "Dirty Mind", "The Gift" Ace Young
2008 Katy Perry "Waking Up in Vegas" One of the Boys
2008 The Rasmus Entire album, including "Livin' in a World Without You" Black Roses
2009 Bon Jovi "Brokenpromiseland", "Fast Cars", "Happy Now", "Learn to Love" The Circle
2009 Margaret Cho "I Cho Am a Woman" I Cho Am a Woman (single)
2009 Tokio Hotel "Zoom/Zoom into Me" Humanoid
2009 The Stunners "Santa Bring My Soldier Home" (Santa Bring My Soldier Home-Single)
2010 Tokio Hotel and Kerli "Strange" Almost Alice
2010 Meat Loaf "Elvis in Vegas" Hang Cool Teddy Bear
2010 Ida Maria "Bad Karma" Katla
2010 Weezer "Trainwrecks" Hurley
2011 Ricky Martin All Songs of the Album Musica + Alma + Sexo
2011 Alice Cooper "I Am Made of You", "The Underture" Welcome 2 My Nightmare
2012 Porcelain Black "Rock Angels" Rock of Ages (film)
2012 Aerosmith "Another Last Goodbye" Music from Another Dimension!
2013 Sick Puppies "There's No Going Back" Connect
2013 Selena Gomez "Love Will Remember" Stars Dance
2013 Bon Jovi "Army of One" What About Now
2013 Bonnie Tyler "Believe in Me", "Stubborn" Rocks and Honey
2015 Zedd "Beautiful Now" True Colors

Personal life

Child lives in Nashville, Tennessee with his husband, Curtis Shaw, and their twin sons, Roman and Nyro. [9] [10] Child and Shaw's struggle to have a baby via surrogacy is recounted in the documentary Two: The Story of Roman & Nyro.

The track "The Truth Comes Out" from Desmond Child & Rouge's second album Runners in the Night (1979) was written about 'coming out' to his girlfriend and Rouge bandmate, Maria Vidal.

The song "A Ray of Hope", written by Don Paul Yowell, was recorded by Child as a tribute to his younger brother, Joey, who died in January 1991 of AIDS-related complications.

Hailing from Hungarian ancestry, Child received dual American-Hungarian citizenship in 2016. [11] Child recently released "The Steps of Champions" a song he wrote for the Hungarian government as the official anthem of the sixtieth anniversary commemorations of the Hungarian Revolution of 1956.

See also

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Discipline is the only solo album recorded by American songwriter and producer Desmond Child. It was released on Elektra in 1991 and features his longer take on "Love on a Rooftop", a song he wrote for Ronnie Spector's album Unfinished Business in 1987, later included in Cher's studio album Heart of Stone. Child's version reached number 40 on the US Billboard Hot 100. Bon Jovi guitarist Richie Sambora appears on the album; he co-wrote two tracks. Also notable is an appearance by Bon Jovi's drummer, Tico Torres. Songwriter Burt Bacharach co-wrote the song "Obsession", which peaked at number 19 on the Billboard Adult Contemporary chart.


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  6. ,
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