Dean Friedman Biography
Last updated: 02/21/2010 11:00:00 AM
In the summer of 1977, Dean Friedman marked his entry into pop consciousness with the enormous success of his infectious hit single Ariel, a quirkily irresistible and uncategorizable pop song about a free spirited, music loving, vegetarian Jewish girl in a peasant blouse who lived, as the lyric goes, "...way on the other side of the Hudson."
A year later, Friedman struck again, this time with a magical duet, performed with singer Denise Marsa, entitled Lucky Stars. Lucky Stars zoomed to the top of the UK singles charts going instantly gold.
The now classic single Lucky Stars paved the way for a slew of hits off of Friedman's humorously titled album "Well, Well" Said the Rocking Chair", including familiar tracks such as Lydia and Rocking Chair as well as singles from his first album, Woman of Mine and Ariel.
"An amazing Talent" - The Sun, "Outstanding" - Record Business, "Songsmith extraordinaire! A great performer!" - Music Week. "Immaculate writing and magnetic personality" - Cumberland News, were just of few of the superlatives used to describe Friedman's powerfully unique and original talent.
Although Friedman's next single, McDonald's Girl was officially banned by the BBC for mentioning the name of the well known fast food restaurant in its chorus, the irrepressible pop song has been covered by a number of acclaimed new bands including the ground breaking Canadian group Barenaked Ladies (WEA). (BNL member, Steve Page, sings background vocals on Dean's latest album.) And, just this summer, a new group named, The Blenders (Universal), recorded another cover of McDonald's Girl, which soared to #1 on the national airplay charts in Norway.
During the '80's, Friedman turned his hand to composing and producing music soundtracks for TV and film. Unbeknownst to many of his fans, he has composed, performed and produced all of the music to Central TV's hit series BOON. And it's Friedman, himself, who sings the country & western songs played over the end credits of every show, familiar to millions of viewers, such as The Texas Rangers, He's My Friend, He's My Buddy and Handsome Stranger. Other TV credits include the popular TV series Nick Arcade / Nickelodeon and Eerie Indiana / NBC.
Friedman also composed, performed and produced the soundtrack to the underground cult horror film classic I Bought A Vampire Motorcycle (Hobo Films/U.K.) in which he performs the unforgettable track She Runs on Blood, Not Gasoline.
While recording remains his main love, Friedman has always had a strong interest in state-of-the-art technologies (he has authored several best-selling MIDI synthesizer books for Music Sales Publishing). Much of his apparent reclusiveness is due in part to his having achieved considerable success in the hi-tech areas of virtual reality software and video game design, with his company InVideo Systems. Since creating TV's first VR game EAT-A-BUG for Nickelodeon TV, InVideo has established itself as one of the world's leading developers of VR entertainment systems with award winning installations in leading children's museums, science museums and family entertainment centers, including venues such as Disney and Blockbuster Golf and Games in Sunrise, FL.
Friedman has also managed to merge his musical and hi-tech interests by inventing an unusual and popular line of musical instruments called the Music Atrium "a musical playground for kids" originally featured at the Eureka! Children's Museum in the U.K. and now being reproduced by his company, Cool Stuff For Kids, for major theme parks, family entertainment centers and museums around the world, including Walt Disney World, Busch Gardens, FL, Barney's Playland / Universal Studios and Dynalecx, Japan. These strange and playful instruments have names such as the Booble, the Honkblatt and the Jingle-Lingle-Lily and have proven to be a huge hit with millions of kids.
Despite Friedman's apparent absence from the popular music scene, evidence that his name and music have made a lasting impact can be found in repeated appearances in popular media: The British band Half Man Half Biscuit released a best selling EP which contains a track incredibly titled The Bastard Son of Dean Friedman. (Dean emphatically denies this claim.) Underground poet, Nicholas Awde, published a well received collection of poems entitled, I Saw Satan on the Northern Line (Desert Hearts), which includes a romantic poem featuring three ardent Dean Friedman fans. In interviews, the popular American band, Ben Folds Five (Sony/550), acknowledges Dean as an important musical influence and their song Kate, off their latest album, Whatever and Ever Amen, pays direct homage to Dean's first single Ariel.
And so, it came as no surprise to Friedman’s UK fans when British TV personality Gaby Roslin, host of the top rated The Big Breakfast show, recently confessed on air to being a massive Dean Friedman fan, herself. Viewer response was “overwhelming” according to the show’s producer. Sacks full of mail, faxes and phone calls immediately began pouring in from viewers expressing their love of Friedman’s music and support for the idea of a Dean Friedman revival. Friedman has recently been featured on the BBC TV series ‘I Love the ‘70’s’, confirming him as a pop culture icon of the decade. Friedman has also just taped a guest star appearance on comedian, David Baddiel’s new TV series ‘The Baddiel Syndrome’ (SKY TV) in which Dean delivers a tour-de-force comedic acting performance playing ‘himself’ in an episode written about him.
Friedman, 45, makes his home in Peekskill, New York where he lives with his wife and two children, plus assorted live stock - including a monkey named Amelia.
Friedman has just completed a 32 city UK tour and is embarking on a US tour to promote the release of his brand new double CD entitled, Songs for Grownups. His first album in over a decade, Songs For Grownups is a powerful, vibrant new work by a mature and seasoned artist at the peak of his craft. Sophisticated, wry, touching and profound... the creative force and energy evident in this stunning group of songs will, no doubt, serve to firmly re-establish Dean Friedman as one of the preeminent songwriters and recording artists of today.