Celebrating his 39th birthday for the 31st time this year, Artie Wayne, has pursued an eclectic array of vocations and avocations, including songwriter, singer, producer, publisher, concert promoter, restaurant host, and wearable artist. His first hit as a songwriter and producer came in 1963: Joey Power’s “Midnight Mary.” He’s had over 250 covers recorded by such artists as Michael Jackson, Aretha Franklin, Tony Orlando and Dawn, Pat Boone, Helen Shapiro, The Magic Lanterns, Rick Nelson, Paul Anka, Cher, The 5th Dimension, well, you get the idea. Wayne, stands with his many gold and platinum records.
He’s holding a “CLIO” award (the Grammy of advertising) for co-writing and producing the Radio Record spot of 1983 (with Joe Klein and “Frenchy” Gauthier) for Kenny Rogers “Share your Love”, which featured the phrase, “Fall in Love All Over Again”. The slogan has been recycled and used for the past 25 years in film campaigns to promote, “Sleepless in Seattle”, “My Best Friends Wedding”, “While You Were Sleeping”, The 2005 re-release of Disney’s, “Lady and the Tramp”, and the recent #1 box office smash, “THE VOW”.
Wayne was first discovered by Bobby Darin in 1959…who sent him to Don Kirshner who had just formed Aldon Music with vet song man/producer Al Nevins. It was there that Wayne learned how to write songs from Carole King, Gerry Goffin, Barry Mann, Neil Sedaka and Howie Greenfield.
He went on to collaborate with Paul Vance [“Itsy, Bitsy Bikini] and in 1963 co-wrote his first hit “Meet Me at Midnight Mary” with Ben Raleigh [“Tell Laura I Love Her”, “Wonderful, Wonderful”, “Love is a Hurtin’ Thing”], and produced Amy/Bell Record’s first hit with Joey Powers.
In 1965, Wayne went to Scepter Records with Ed Silvers, where he produced the Shirelles, the Kingsmen and the Guess Who. When Silvers moved to the coast to join Viva Records, Wayne stayed in New York.
Unable to afford to sign Nick Ashford and Valerie Simpson, whom he worked with at Scepter, he took the duo to Eddie Holland [of Holland/ Dozier/ Holland], who signed them to Motown. In the next four and a half years, Wayne and partners Sandy and Kelli Ross built Alouette Productions into the top New York publishing administration and exploitation firm of the late sixties. They represented Quincy Jones, (Joey) Levine and (Artie) Resnick, (Gary) Geld and (Peter) Udell, Bobby Scott, Janis Ian, Ron Haffkine, Leslie Gore, Bo Gentry and Jerry Jeff Walker.
He recorded under the name Shadow Mann for his own label Tomorrow’s Productions which was distributed by the legendary Morris Levy. He is also credited with discovering future Academy Award winning actress, Sissy Spacek, who recorded for his label under the name Rainbo. After moving to the coast in 1970, he contributed pieces to Rock and Fusion magazines and reviewed acts for Cash Box before joining Viva Music as professional manager. When his friend Don Williams from rival publishing company MCA Music played him an acetate of the unreleased Rock Opera, “Jesus Christ Superstar” by Tim Rice and Andrew Lloyd Webber he sensed it was going to be a phenomenon. Williams, Wayne and their friend Allan Rinde promoted the record to their “underground tastemaker” friends. MCA records as well as Rice and Webber credit the trio with breaking the record in the US. (Below Image: L to R – Allan Rinde, Andrew Lloyd Webber, Don Williams, Tim Rice, Artie Wayne)
When VIVA was acquired, Wayne became general professional manager and director of creative services for Warner Bros. Music. He directed the New York, Hollywood and Nashville professional staff, which has been dubbed “The Warner Raiders.” During those years, they represented the works of America, Badfinger, Jackson Browne, Bob Dylan, the Faces, the Fifth Dimension, the Kinks, Gordon Lightfoot, Mahavishnu John McLaughlin, Joni Mitchell, Van Morrison, Graham Nash, Randy Newman, Stephen Stills, John Sebastian, Sly and the Family Stone, Carly Simon, Jimmy Webb, Neil Young and the Eagles. He also acted as musical consultant on Warner Bros. Films’ “Come Back Charleston Blue”,and “Cleopatra Jones”.
When he became the Head of A+M’s publishing company In his first week after becoming head of Irving/ Almo music he gave Olivia Newton-John, “I Honestly Love You” which became the “Record Of The Year”. He also represented the songs of Paul Williams, Roger Nichols, Jeff Barry, Peter Allan, Richard Carpenter, John Bettis, and Billy Preston. He also signed Newcomer Rick James and future Academy Award winner, Will Jennings. (“My Heart Will Go On”)
When he left A+M, He formed the Artie Wayne Organisation, and sold dance records around the world that were produced for him by David Foster, Jack Conrad, Art Munson and Joe Klein. He also represented Klein as agent, who created ad campaigns for EMI, Capitol, Casablanca, Ariola, K-Tel, and Warner Brothers Records.
Wayne also recorded a dance album for Neil Bogart’s Casablanca Records under the name Arthur Wayne.
In 1983, Allan Rinde, produced the, Artie Wayne, Songwriter Motivational Course. Among the aspiring songwriters who attended, were Jason Bloom (who went on to write for the Backstreet Boys), John Barnes (who went on to co-write much of the “Bad” album with Michael Jackson) and Diane Warren (“Unbreak my Heart”, “How Do I Live (Without you?”) “Because You Love Me” and “Faith of the Heart”) who’s considered one of the greatest songwriters of our time!
Wayne smiles and says, “I don’t know if anybody learned anything about writing songs ….but it gave a lot of newcomers a chance to rub elbows with successful people in the music business!
When Rinde decided to open a Chinese restaurant on Fairfax Ave. (in a predominantly Jewish neighborhood in Hollywood) Wayne gave him the name Genghis Cohen. He was host there intermittently for nine years…and started a “Wearable Art’ clothing business. His clients included…ERTE , the father of Art Deco, Sarah Jessica Parker, Robert Downey, Jr, Sammy Davis, Jr, “Skunk”Baxter, Pam Tillis,. Kenny Rogers, J.D. Nicholas of the Commodores, and Luther Vandross.He also created wearable art for Fred Segal on Melrose Avenue, Leather Force on Rodeo Drive and Robinson’s department stores.
He went to New York in 1988 where he was Director Of Creative Services for Harvey Russack’s UNIQUE Clothing Wearhouse, in the East Village. He had seven graffitti artist working under him who airbrushed jackets and jeans for the top recording acts New Kids On The Block, First Edition, Bobby Brown, The Notorious B.I.G., TUPAC SHAKUR, Tiffany, Blackstreet, Aaron Hall, KRS 1, and “Marky” Mark Wahlberg.
Wayne also created a line of successful T-Shirts celebrating the new relations between the United States and The Soviet Union “MORE THAN JUST A DREAM” which showed an American flag and a Russian flag inside a peace sign, that was spotlighted in Business Week and featured on ABC’s 20/20 with Diane Sawyer.
On his return to the West Coast Wayne performed and presented shows to standing room only crowds at The Genghis Cantina, Allan Rinde’s new venture located next to Genghis Cohen.
When Wayne moved to the California desert for health reasons he began to paint/ sculpt on unfinished quartz that were sold in Palm Springs and La Quinta.
Wayne continues to write songs, run his music catalog which includes the classic, “Little Christmas Tree” By Michael Jackson and actively blog with almost two million views , he is also promoting his new book, “I Did It For A Song”.
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This BIO was created by: Artie Wayne, Allan Rinde, Joe Klein, and Sebastian Prooth.
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