Biography - Tony Macaulay
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Biography

Tony Macaulay’s songs have sold more than fifty-two million records/CDs worldwide. Thirty-eight of his songs have made the Top Twenty in the UK – eight made Number One. Sixteen of his songs have been hits in the USA – three making the Number One spot in the single charts there. His songs have featured in four chart-topping movies. His new musical – Sherlock in Love – set to open in Florida on September 25th, 2015, is Tony’s tenth major theatre presentation in the USA.

 

In 1970, Tony became the first-ever ‘Songwriter of the Year’ – an award bestowed annually, ever since, by the British Academy (BASCA). He won the award again, seven years later – beating the BeeGees in the year they had five singles in the Top Five in the USA.  In all, Tony has won nine British Academy Awards. In 2007, Tony became the first-ever non-American recipient of the coveted Edwin Forrest Award for ‘outstanding services to theater’.

 

Macaulay’s best-known songs include such classics as ‘Baby, Now That I’ve Found You’, ‘Build Me Up Buttercup’, ‘Love Grows Where My Rosemary Goes’, ‘Don’t Give Up On Us’, ‘Last Night I Didn’t Get To Sleep At All’, ‘Smile A Little Smile for Me’, ‘You Won’t Find Another Fool Like Me’, ‘Kissing In The Back Row of The Movies’, ‘Number In My Little Red Book’, ‘Let The Heartaches Begin’, ‘Silver Lady’, ‘Sorry Suzanne’, ‘If I Get Home On Christmas Day’, ‘That Same Old Feeling’, ‘Something Here In My Heart’ and ‘Home Lovin Man’.

 

He has written songs for Elvis Presley, Gladys Knight, Sonny and Cher, Donna Summer, Tom Jones, Olivia Newton John, Englebert Humperdink, The New Seekers, The Fifth Dimension, Frank Sinatra, Johnny Mathis, The Foundations, David Soul, The Temptations, The Drifters, Andy Williams, The Hollies, Glen Campbell, James Ingram and Alison Krause. Tony’s co-writers include, amongst others, Sir Elton John and Sir Tim Rice.

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The Landmark Court Case – ‘A Brighter Future for Songwriters’
In the seventies, Macaulay mounted a court case against his then music publisher, Aaron Schroeder Music Ltd, which would change the music industry forever. Until 1975, many music publishers – including Schroeder – engaged in what is known as ‘double dipping’ – an accounting practice that ensured they kept substantially more of a songwriters’ foreign income than what was evident from the contract.

 

Macaulay fought to have his exclusive agreement with Schroeder set aside, becoming the first writer to challenge this widespread activity. After seven years of litigation, on both sides of the Atlantic, the matter was finally decided in the House of Lords (the UK equivalent of the US Supreme Court) – it became the first and only show business case to be heard at that level. The Law Lords ruled that the terms of the contract in question were, ‘in restraint of trade and contrary to public policy’, and overturned it – outlawing double-dipping, once and for all.

 

In the years that followed, many world-famous songwriters were to use this precedent to free themselves from onerous publishing agreements.

 

Music publishing, today, is a kinder, more equitable business than that of old – in some small part, due to Macaulay’s case. Its long term impact on songwriter’s welfare contributed to Macaulay being honoured in 1995 with ‘The Jimmy Kennedy Award’ – given by The British Academy of Songwriter and Composers for outstanding services to the music industry.

 

Macaulay’s songs have featured in four US chart-topping movies: ‘There’s Something About Mary’, starring Ben Stiller and Cameron Diaz; ‘Heartbreakers’, starring Sigourney Weaver, Jennifer Love Hewitt and Gene Hackman; ‘Shallow Hal’, starring Gwyneth Paltrow and Jack Black, and the movie version of ‘Starsky and Hutch’, starring Ben Stiller and Owen Wilson.

 

In November 2004, Tony appeared on stage for the first time as a performer. A packed house at The Old Market Theatre, Brighton, England, listened as Tony sang his way through an evening of his hits. In January, 2011, Tony headlined a concert at the two thousand-three-hundred-seat King Center, Florida, raising more than fifty thousand dollars for The Cocoa Village Playhouse.

Tony became Composer to her Majesty the Queen when he was chosen to write a work to commemorate the sovereign’s sixtieth birthday. Six thousand children and the Band of Grenadier Guards performed his music in the foreground of Buckingham Palace in the largest rehearsed musical event in post war history.

 

In the mid-nineties, Macaulay turned his hand to thriller-writing. Sayonara, his first excursion into this new field, gained strong international sales. ‘A major new talent… The best thing of its kind since The Day of the Jackal': internationally acclaimed thriller-writer Jack Higgins on Tony’s second novel ‘Enemy of the State’ (front-of-jacket quote). Published in the UK by Hodder Headline and in the US by Harper Collins (as ‘Affairs of State’), the book made an impact in more than a dozen countries.

 

Tony’s popular thriller-writing course, at Brighton University, attracted the then-unknown C J Sansom (the writer of the Shardlake Novels and ‘Winter in Madrid’). Sansom, now with seven best-selling books under his belt, and second only to J K Rowling in being the highest ‘pre-ordered’ novelist in the UK, acknowledges that Tony’s course and ‘his forensic analysis of the thriller’ provided his start on the road to success.

 

Macaulay’s West End Musical, ‘Windy City’, premiered in the ‘eighties, winning both the Evening Standard Drama Award and the British Academy Award in the Best Musical category. Major productions of the show were mounted in the USA, Germany and Australia. In 2007, a new production of the show played to sell-out business at the Walnut Street Theatre, Philadelphia – the largest subscription theatre in the world.

 

Tony is a past chairman of the Society of Distinguished Songwriters and is acknowledged as one of the greatest songwriters of all time. He is married with four children, and divides his time between Brighton, England, and Cocoa Beach, Florida.

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