Tony Waddington (songwriter)

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Tony Waddington
Birth nameAnthony Brandon Waddington
Born (1943-01-01) 1 January 1943 (age 78)
Liverpool, England
Occupation(s)Singer-songwriter, record producer, film producer, orchestral arranger, composer, screenplay writer
InstrumentsGuitar, Piano
Years active1960s–present
Labels Decca Records Polydor Records
Associated actsPete Best Combo, Pete Best Four, The Rubettes, The Flirtations, Mac & Katie Kissoon
Website tonywaddington.com

Anthony Brandon Waddington (born 1 January 1943) [1] [2] is an English singer-songwriter, record producer, film producer, screenplay writer, and creative media executive. He became well known, with Wayne Bickerton, as writer and producer of a series of UK chart hits in the 1970s for The Rubettes. He also received an Ivor Novello Award as "Songwriter of the Year".

Contents

Life and career

He was born on 1 January 1943 in Liverpool, [3] [4] and studied classical guitar and music theory. His first job was working at a solicitor's office in Liverpool, but he played with several local bands including Lee Curtis and the All-Stars and the Pete Best Four (later the Pete Best Combo), at the same time as his childhood friend Wayne Bickerton was the band's lead vocalist. [5] [6] As well as sharing most of the singing, Bickerton and Waddington became songwriters for the group, which toured mainly in Germany and the US, before they left in 1966. Then Waddington spent time in the United States and on his return to the UK joined Decca Records as a songwriter and record producer. [5] He also studied orchestral writing under the tutelage of Henry Zajaczkowski. [4]

Tony Waddington and Dan Donovan at Abbey Road Studios Tony Waddington & Dan Donovan at Abbey Road Studios.jpg
Tony Waddington and Dan Donovan at Abbey Road Studios

He and Bickerton continued writing songs together. One of the most successful was "Nothing but a Heartache", recorded by American girl singing group The Flirtations, which reached No. 34 on the US Billboard Hot 100 in 1969, [7] and is now regarded as a Northern soul classic. It was recorded 36 years later by Southside Johnny in 2005. [8]

During this period, he and Bickerton also came up with the idea for a rock and roll musical. [3] They co-wrote and produced a demonstration recording of a song, "Sugar Baby Love", originally intending to submit it for the Eurovision Song Contest but instead offering it to Showaddywaddy, who turned it down. [5] Bickerton and Waddington then offered it to the demo musicians, provided that they would become an actual group. The musicians agreed, were named The Rubettes, and "Sugar Baby Love" became a UK number one hit in 1974, [9] also reaching number 37 in the US chart. They wrote and produced all of the Rubettes' subsequent UK hits – nine Top 50 hits in all between 1974 and 1977 – winning an Ivor Novello Award as Songwriters of the Year, and also reached the UK Top 10 with "Sugar Candy Kisses" by Mac and Katie Kissoon. [3] [5] [10] [11]

They set up their own record label, State Records, which diversified in 1979 into owning Odyssey Studios and a new office building at Marble Arch in central London, later sold to the radio station Jazz FM. [4]

Waddington has also co-written songs for Petula Clark, [12] Tom Jones, [13] and Brotherhood of Man. [14] More recently, Waddington has orchestrated scores for television productions. His music has been used in several films including Muriel's Wedding (1994), Resurrection Man (1998) and Breakfast on Pluto (2005). [4] [15]

As of 2013 Waddington is a director of Park Lane Media. [4]

Related Research Articles

The Rubettes

The Rubettes were an English pop band put together by musician John Richardson in 1974 after the release of "Sugar Baby Love", a recording assembled of studio session musicians in 1973 by the songwriting team of Wayne Bickerton, then the head of A&R at Polydor Records, and his co-songwriter, Tony Waddington, after their doo-wop and 1950s American pop-influenced songs had been rejected by a number of existing acts. Waddington paired the group with manager John Morris, the husband of singer Clodagh Rodgers and under his guidance, the band duly emerged at the tail end of the glam rock movement, wearing trademark white suits and cloth caps on stage. Their first release, "Sugar Baby Love" was an instant hit remaining at number one in the United Kingdom for four weeks in May 1974, while reaching number 37 on the US chart that August, and remains their best-known record. Subsequent releases were to be less successful, but the band continued to tour well into the 2000s with two line-ups in existence.

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John Barry Mason is an English songwriter; he grew up in the village of Coppull, near Chorley in Lancashire. A leading songwriter of the 1960s, he wrote the bulk of his most successful songs in partnership with Les Reed. Mason gained many gold and platinum awards for his work including five Ivor Novello Awards, the most recent of them in 1998.

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Sugar Baby Love 1974 single by The Rubettes

"Sugar Baby Love", recorded in autumn 1973 and released in January 1974, is a bubblegum pop song, and the debut single of The Rubettes. Written by Wayne Bickerton and Tony Waddington and produced by Bickerton, engineered by John Mackswith at Lansdowne Recording Studios, and with lead vocals by Paul Da Vinci, "Sugar Baby Love" was the band's one and only number one single in the UK Singles Chart, spending four weeks at the top of the chart in May 1974.

Tony Hiller

Anthony Toby Hiller was an English songwriter and record producer. He was best known for writing and/or producing hits for Brotherhood of Man, including "United We Stand" (1970) and "Save Your Kisses for Me" (1976).

Paul Da Vinci is a British singer and musician. He is best known as the lead singer on the 1974 hit recording by the Rubettes, "Sugar Baby Love", although he did not perform with the group at the time. He worked as a demo and session singer before and after his own successful solo career, which included the UK hit "Your Baby Ain't Your Baby Anymore", which peaked at number 20 in the UK Official Charts, week ending 17 August 1974 and number 54 in Australia. In the 80s, Paul sang most of the voices backing and lead on the Tight Fit hit "Back to the Sixties, Part 2", and performed on Top of the Pops with the group.

Wayne Bickerton was a British musician, songwriter, record producer and music business executive. He became well known, with Tony Waddington, as writer and producer of a series of UK chart hits in the 1970s for The Rubettes, and as a leading figure in SESAC – one of the three major American performing rights organisations.

State Records

State Records is a British independent record label, established by Wayne Bickerton, Tony Waddington and John Fruin in 1975. The label released hits by many successful artists including The Rubettes, Mac & Katie Kissoon and Delegation.

Nick Coler is an English musician, producer, composer and songwriter. He has been nominated for and won awards for songwriting and music production and has written, produced and played on hit songs for diverse acts ranging from Goldie, KLF, and Alice Cooper to Girls Aloud, Sugababes, and Gabriella Cilmi.

<i>We Can Do It</i> (album) 1975 studio album by The Rubettes

We Can Do It is the second studio album by the English pop band The Rubettes, released on the State Records label in March 1975. The album reached no 41 in the UK charts and contained two UK top 10 hits – "I Can Do It" and "Juke Box Jive".

<i>Wear Its At</i> 1974 studio album by The Rubettes

Wear It's 'At is the debut album by English pop band The Rubettes assembled in 1973 by the songwriting team of Wayne Bickerton, then the head of A&R at Polydor Records, and his co-songwriter, Tony Waddington, after their doo-wop and 1950s American pop-influenced songs had been rejected by a number of existing acts. Tracks from this album also exhibited the doo-wop style. The album title was a reference to the group's wearing trademark white suits and white cloth caps on stage, a white cap being shown on the album front cover.

<i>Rubettes</i> (album) 1975 studio album by The Rubettes

Rubettes is the third studio album by the English pop band The Rubettes, released on the State Records label in November 1975, their third studio album release within 12 months. It was the last Rubettes album produced by Wayne Bickerton and Tony Waddington.The album contained two UK top 40 hits - Foe Dee O Dee and Little Darling.
In 1992, Dice Records (France) released the Rubettes' third and fourth albums as a double CD set. In 2015, Caroline Records released the album Rubettes, with three bonus tracks, as part of a box CD set of the Rubettes' first five studio albums.

Tonight (Rubettes song) 1974 single by The Rubettes

"Tonight" was the second single released by The Rubettes from their debut album Wear It's 'At. Written by Wayne Bickerton and Tony Waddington and produced by Bickerton, the single reached number 12 in the UK charts.

Juke Box Jive 1974 single by The Rubettes

"Juke Box Jive", by English band The Rubettes, was the lead single from their second album We Can Do It. As with their two previous singles, it was written by the songwriting team of Wayne Bickerton and Tony Waddington and produced by Bickerton. The single reached number 3 in the UK charts.

I Can Do It 1975 single by The Rubettes

"I Can Do It" was the fourth single released by the English band The Rubettes and the second single from their album We Can Do It. The song was written and produced by Wayne Bickerton and Tony Waddington. It reached number 7 in the UK charts, making it the band's third top 10 UK hit from four single releases.
The single was significant in that it was the first release on the State Records, a label set up by Bickerton, Waddington and John Fruin in 1975, bearing the catalogue number STAT 1.

<i>Sign of the Times</i> (Rubettes album) 1976 studio album by The Rubettes

Sign of the Times is the fourth studio album by the English band The Rubettes. It was released on the State Records label in June 1976. The album represented a significant change in direction for the band, as it was the first not produced by Wayne Bickerton and Tony Waddington – instead the Rubettes took on production responsibilities themselves, with Alan Blakley as co-producer. The band made the decision due to the disappointing sales of their previous two Bickerton/Waddington singles and the desire to forge new musical directions.

"Taking It On" is a song written by Lynsey de Paul and Ron Roker, and originally published by ATV Music. Although de Paul recorded her own demo version of the song in 1972, her version of the song was not released until 2013 on her Anthology CD album Sugar and Beyond. De Paul also arranged and produced this recording.

References

  1. "Tony Waddington Discography at Discogs". discogs. Retrieved 4 March 2013.
  2. "England & Wales Birth Index". Search.ancestry.co.uk. Retrieved 29 September 2014.
  3. 1 2 3 "The Songwriters". The Rubettes Featuring Bill Hurd. Retrieved 4 March 2013.
  4. 1 2 3 4 5 "Tony Waddington". Tony Waddington. Retrieved 4 March 2013.
  5. 1 2 3 4 Eder, Bruce. "Wayne Bickerton – Music Biography, Credits and Discography". AllMusic. Retrieved 4 March 2013.
  6. "merseybeat.com". mersey-beat.com. Retrieved 4 March 2013.
  7. Joel Whitburn, Top Pop Singles 1955–2002, ISBN   0-89820-155-1
  8. Deming, Mark. "Into the Harbour – Southside Johnny : Songs, Reviews, Credits, Awards". AllMusic. Retrieved 4 March 2013.
  9. Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 473. ISBN   1-904994-10-5.
  10. "Wayne Bickerton". Alwynwturner.com. Retrieved 4 March 2013.
  11. "Tony Waddington • Top Songs as Writer ••• Music VF, US & UK hits charts". Musicvf.com. Retrieved 4 March 2013.
  12. "C'est Ca, Ma Chanson – Petula Clark : Listen, Appearances, Song Review". AllMusic. 3 February 2009. Retrieved 4 March 2013.
  13. "Can't Stop Loving You – Tom Jones : Listen, Appearances, Song Review". AllMusic. Retrieved 4 March 2013.
  14. "Brotherhood of Man – United We Stand (CD) at Discogs". discogs. Retrieved 4 March 2013.
  15. "Tony Waddington". IMDb. Retrieved 4 March 2013.