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Desmond Child (born John Charles Barratt, October 28, 1953 in Gainsville, Floridamarker) is an American musician, songwriter, and producer. He is a member of the Songwriters Hall of Fame.


For nearly three decades, songwriter/producer Desmond Child has reigned as one of music's most successful creative forces. His list of accolades includes Grammy awards, 70 Top 40 singles, and songs that have sold over 300 million albums worldwide. His collaborations include Bon Jovi, Aerosmith, Ricky Martin, KISS, Kelly Clarkson, Dream Theater, Cher, Rosie Johnson and Alice Cooper. "Desmond's a chameleon," Aerosmith's Steven Tyler told Rolling Stone. "The first time we met, we wrote "Angel" in about an hour and 45 minutes - and I'm not bullshitting. The guy's a fucking genius."

Desmond Child was born in Gainesville, FLmarker, and raised in Miami where his Cubanmarker songwriter mother, Elena Casals taught him to play the piano at an early age. In high school, Child formed his first band. It was an acoustic collaboration with a high school friend. Child went on to attend Miami-Dade College. It was in Miami that he formed the group Desmond Child & Rouge in 1973. Soon after, he moved the group to New York City to pursue their musical dreams. "My band Desmond Child & Rouge recorded two albums for Capitolmarker in 1979 and we had a dance hit, "Our Love Is Insane", recalls Child. "But ultimately, we were doing something very different and urban. We weren't really understood by our label."

Child’s experience as a recording artist would soon play a role in his songwriting future. His songs caught the ear of KISS guitarist Paul Stanley, who asked Desmond to co-write a track for the band's 1979 Dynasty album. The result was "I Was Made for Loving You", which is still one of the biggest hits in the KISS catalogue. Paul Stanley then passed Child's phone number to New Jerseymarker rockers Jon Bon Jovi and Richie Sambora. Jon called Desmond and the three ended up in the basement of Sambora's parents' house, where they penned Bon Jovi's first number-one single, "You Give Love a Bad Name". The collaborations continued and they followed with two more chart-toppers, "Livin' on a Prayer" from the band's breakthrough album Slippery When Wet and "Bad Medicine" from the follow-up, New Jersey.

Child soon began duplicating the feat with other major artists. He hooked up with Aerosmith and wrote "Dude " & "Angel" (from the their 1987 comeback album, Permanent Vacation), "What it Takes" (Pump, 1989), and "Crazy" (Get a Grip, 1993). During the same period, he co-wrote Joan Jett's "I Hate Myself for Loving You" and also co-wrote all of the tracks on Alice Cooper's Trash LP (including the hit single "Poison"). At this point, Child began branching out from his rock base, co-penning Michael Bolton’s"How Can We Be Lovers", as well as co-writing and producing "Just Like Jesse James" and "We All Sleep Alone" for Cher. In the midst of all of his success, he also found time to record the solo album Discipline (Elektra, 1991), which contained his own Top 40 hit, "Love on a Rooftop". In 1993, Desmond wrote the song in Spanish titled Tú Serás la Historia de Mi Vida for Colombian singer Shakira's second studio album Peligro. But the song and the whole album itself lacked the production cohesion and it lead the album as a commercial failure. In the late 1990s, Child returned to his Latin heritage via collaborations with Ricky Martin. Their efforts resulted in the number-one worldwide smash "Livin' La Vida Loca". The two also scored big with the 1998 World Cup Theme "The Cup of Life", which was a #1 hit in 25 countries.

Despite having worked for nearly thirty years as a writer, producer, and artist, Child remains energized and enthusiastic...ready to create hits indefinitely. "I was born with a certain drive and sense of destiny that keeps me going," says Child. "Maybe it was because I was born poor; I wanted to win for the family. I still put a lot of energy in whatI do. I try to really live life, so I have new experiences that I can write about." More than twenty years after the number-one beginning in that New Jersey basement, Desmond Child remains as in-demand as ever. His latest projects include: The Rasmus, Joss Stone, David Archuleta, Kelly Clarkson, Scorpions, Hilary Duff, Meat Loaf, Ace Young, and his old pals in Bon Jovi. "The Desmond you don't know about," says Jon Bon Jovi, "is the one who not only taught me the next level of songwriting,but so many of the true aspects of friendship: truth, honor and loyalty. We've been through a lot together - the ups and the downs…and the ups again."


Desmond Child & Rouge


For and with other artists

Artist/singer Song(s) written/co-written/produced Album Year
Desmond Child & Rouge "My Heart's on Fire" Runners in the Night 1979
Ace Young ? Ace Young 2008
Aerosmith "Angel", "Dude " Permanent Vacation 1987
"What It Takes", "F.I.N.E." Pump 1989
"Crazy" Get a Grip 1993
"Hole in My Soul" Nine Lives 1997
Clay Aiken "Invisible", "Run to Me" Measure of a Man 2003
Alice Cooper Whole album including "Poison" Trash 1989
Animotion "Calling It Love" Room To Move 1989
Sebastian Bach "Falling Into You" Angel Down 2007
Jimmy Barnes "Waitin' for the Heartache" and "Walk on", co-writing with Joe Lynn Turner Freight Train Heart 1987
Michael Bolton "How Am I Supposed to Live Without You", "How Can We Be Lovers?" and "Love Cuts Deep", also produced on album Soul Provider 1989
Bon Jovi "Livin' on a Prayer", "You Give Love a Bad Name", "Without Love", "I'd Die For You" Slippery When Wet 1986
"Bad Medicine", "Blood on Blood", "Born to Be My Baby", "Wild Is The Wind" New Jersey 1988
"I'll Sleep When I'm Dead", "Keep the Faith", "Prayer '94" Keep The Faith 1992
"Something for the Pain", "This Ain't a Love Song", "Hearts Breaking Even", "Diamond Ring" These Days 1995
"Real Life" EdTV Original Motion Picture Soundtrack 1999
"One Wild Night" Crush 2000
"All About Lovin' You", "Misunderstood", "The Distance" Bounce 2002
"Bells Of Freedom", "Dirty Little Secret" Have a Nice Day 2005
" Make a Memory" Lost Highway 2007
"Brokenpromiseland", "Fast Cars", "Happy Now", "Learn To Love" The Circle 2009
Bonfire "The Price of Loving You" Point Blank 1989
Cher "Save Up All Your Tears" Love Hurts 1991
"Just Like Jesse James", "Emotional Fire", "Does Anybody Really Fall in Love Anymore?" Heart Of Stone 1989
Margaret Cho "I Cho Am a Woman" ? 2009
Dream Theater "You Not Me" Falling into Infinity 1997
Ace Frehley (ex-Kiss) "Hide Your Heart" Trouble Walkin' 1989
Hanson "Weird" Middle of Nowhere 1997
Joan Jett & The Blackhearts "I Hate Myself for Loving You" Up Your Alley 1988
Kiss "I Was Made For Lovin' You" Dynasty 1979
"Heaven's on Fire" and "Under the Gun" Animalize 1984
"King of the Mountain", "Who Wants to Be Lonely", "I'm Alive", "Radar for Love", "UH! All Night" Asylum 1985
"Bang Bang You", "My Way", "Reason to Live" Crazy Nights 1987
"Hide Your Heart", "You Love Me to Hate You" Hot In The Shade 1989
La Ley "Más Allá" Libertad 2003
Ricky Martin "Livin' La Vida Loca", "The Cup of Life" Ricky Martin 1999
"She Bangs" Sound Loaded 2000
Jesse McCartney "Because You Live" Beautiful Soul 2004
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
Billie Myers "Kiss the Rain" Growing, Pains 1998
Vince Neil "Promise Me" - 2005
Katy Perry "Waking Up In Vegas" One of the Boys 2008
The Rasmus ? Black Roses 2008
Ratt "Givin' Yourself Away", "Heads I Win, Tails You Lose", "Lovin' You's A Dirty Job", "One Step Away" and "Shame Shame Shame" Detonator 1990
Sakis Rouvas "Ola Kala", "The Light" and "Disco Girl", also produced album Ola Kala 2002
Roxette "You Don't Understand Me" Don't Bore Us, Get To The Chorus! 1995
Jennifer Rush "Down to You" and Heart Wars" Heart Over Mind 1987
Scorpions "Hour I" Humanity: Hour I 2007
Shakira "Tú Serás la Historia de Mi Vida" Peligro 1993
Paul Stanley (Kiss) "All About You", "Lift", "Live To Win", "Wake Up Screaming", "Where Angels Dare" Live To Win 2006
Amanda Stott "Homeless Heart" Chasing The Sky 2005
Bonnie Tyler "If You Were a Woman And I Was a Man" Secret Dreams and Forbidden Fire 1986
"Take Another Look at Your Heart" and "Hide Your Heart", also produced on album Hide Your Heart 1989
Steve Vai "In My Dreams With You" Sex and Religion 1993
Tokio Hotel "Zoom/Zoom into Me" Humanoid 2009

Personal life

"Dezzy" Child lives in Nashvillemarker, TN with his partner Curtis and their seven-year-old twins, Roman and Nyro. He has made his home in Nashville since 1991.

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 band member, 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.

The lyrics to Bon Jovi's "Livin' On A Prayer" were inspired, in part on Desmond life in late 1970s New York. He was living with then-girlfriend and Desmond Child & Rouge bandmate, Maria Vidal, working as a New York taxi cab driver trying to make ends meet, whilst Vidal was a waitress nicknamed Gina. In the evening they were musicians.

See also


  1. [1] Biography at Song Writer
  2. [2] Biography at
  3. [3] Biography at Musicians
  4. Someone call Benson and Stabler![4] Nashville Scene

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