Six-Time Grammy® Award winner Glen Ballard is one of popular music’s most accomplished producers/songwriters and arrangers. His records have sold more than 150 million records worldwide, and he has worked with a diverse array of the finest singers and artists in the business, from Aretha Franklin to Van Halen and Aerosmith.
Ballard started his career working as a staff producer/ songwriter for the legendary Quincy Jones, during which time he worked with Teddy Pendergrass, Patti Austin, Jack Wagner and The Pointer Sisters. From the late ‘70s through the early ‘80s, Ballard composed dozens of songs, from “What’s On Your Mind,” a Quincy Jones-produced hit for George Benson, and “Why Is This Girl Giving Me Fever,” an international sensation for French superstar Johnny Hallyday, to “Dance Electric,” the first of several Ballard songs recorded by the Pointer Sisters. Ballard went on to write George Strait’s the #1 Country hit, “You Look So Good In Love,” named the 1986 Country Song Of The Year. The same year, his co-written “Man In The Mirror” was heard on Jackson’s eight times platinum Bad. Produced by Jones, and featuring Ballard’s synthesizer arrangement and keyboards, the recording raced to the top of the R&B charts and today remains one of the Jackson’s–and Ballard’s–most popular songs. His golden touch continued with 1988’s “State Of Attraction” for Paula Abdul. Her Forever Your Girl album would go seven times platinum, the biggest-selling debut in history–to that date.
In 1990, Ballard took home his first Grammy, for Best Rock Song, for arranging “The Places You Find Love,” sung by Chaka Khan and Siedah Garrett, which appears on Quincy Jones’ platinum Grammy-winning Album of the Year Back On The Block. That year he also worked with three young women with famous parents–Carnie and Wendy Wilson, daughters of Beach Boys legend Brian, and Chynna Phillips, offspring of the Mamas and Papas’ John and Michelle. Their 1990 album was certified five times platinum, earned three Grammy nominations for co-writer/producer Ballard, and resulted in three #1 pop singles, “Hold On,” “Release Me” and “You’re In Love” (the first two going gold). The following year, Ballard wrote and arranged “Keep The Faith” for Jackson’s Dangerous album and introduced a new artist named Curtis Stigers. The latter’s self-titled debut included the Ballard-written and produced Top 10 pop single “I Wonder Why.” He next co-wrote and produced Wilson Phillips’ platinum 1992 followup Shadows And Light. He also wrote and produced songs for Aerosmith on the double platinum Grammy-nominated Nine Lives (1997), including the gold Grammy-nominated “Falling In Love (Is Hard On The Knees)” and Grammy-winning “Pink.” Others who have recorded Ballard songs are Al Jarreau; Earth, Wind & Fire, Sheena Easton, Celine Dion, The Corrs, The Brian Setzer Orchestra, Lisa Loeb, Amy Grant, Philip Bailey, and K.T. Oslin.
One of Ballard’s biggest successes involved chart-topping, multi platinum album Jagged Little Pill which Ballard co-wrote and produced for Alanis Morissette. The 1995 chart-topping album has been certified 16 times platinum in the U.S. (worldwide sales in excess of 30 million copies) and remains the #3 best-selling album in history as well as the best-selling solo album and best-selling debut album of all time. Honored as Billboard’s “Top Pop Album of the 90s,” Jagged Little Pill earned Ballard three Grammys: Best Rock Song (“You Oughta Know”), Best Rock Album and the coveted Album Of The Year, and he was also nominated for Producer Of The Year. Jagged Little Pill Live won him yet another Grammy for Best Video (Long Form). The following year, the single “Ironic,” from the same album, was nominated for Record of the Year. In 1998, Ballard reteamed with Morrisette for the album Supposed Former Infatuation Junkie (1998), which reached #1 and triple platinum.
And in 2005, on the 10th anniversary album: Jagged Little Pill Acoustic (Maverick), the 4-times platinum release which was sold exclusively at Starbucks for six weeks (June 13, 2005) and became the best-selling album in the chain’s history.
Among the many highlights of his producing/writing/arranging career are the ten times platinum debut of Wilson Phillips, multi-platinum No Doubt record Return of Saturn and The Dave Matthews Band multi-platinum Everyday which he co-wrote and produced. Other hits Ballard produced and co-penned over the years include Christina Aguilera’s hit song “The Voice Within” from her triple platinum Stripped (RCA 2002), as well as “Lights Out,” for Lisa Marie Presley’s gold debut To Whom It May Concern (Capitol 2003), and the title track from “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition” entitled “So Much,” performed by O.A.R. In addition, he completed albums with P.O.D. and The Goo Goo Dolls. He also co-wrote and produced the 2006 debut album for Katy Perry, released on the Java Records imprint Ballard founded in 1996. In recent years, Ballard has kept busy producing Annie Lennox’s Songs of Mass Destruction (Arista 2007), and co-writing and producing Idina Menzel’s I Stand (Warner Brothers 2008). In 2011, Ballard co-produced Stevie Nicks’ first record in 10 years In Your Dreams (Warner Brothers) with Dave Stewart (Eurythmics), which Rolling Stone Magazine called her “finest collection of songs since the eighties.”
Ballard, a prominent member of the recording industry, has also established himself as a hitmaker in the film world. The song “Believe” which he co-wrote with Alan Silvestri for the film The Polar Express won Ballard a Grammy, and nominations for a Golden Globe and Academy Award in 2005. Ballard has since re-teamed with the award-winning filmmakers of The Polar Express, to co-write with Silvestri “A Hero Comes Home” performed by Idina Menzel for the Warner Brother’s film Beowulf and “God Bless Us Everyone” performed by Andrea Bocelli for Disney’s A Christmas Carol. Ballard also wrote the hit “Ordinary Miracle” performed by Sarah McLachlan, with Dave Stewart (Eurythmics) for the 2006 film Charlotte’s Web and co-wrote “Butterfly Fly Away” for Disney’s Hannah Montana: The Movie with Alan Silvestri.
Most recently, Ballard has found success in musical theater with the debut of Ghost The Musical on the West End in July 2011. Adapted for the stage by the original screenplay author Bruce Rubin, the musical is based on the Academy Award winning film Ghost, which starred Patrick Swayze and Demi Moore. Ballard wrote the music with writing partner Dave Stewart (Eurythmics). The Daily Telegraph called Ghost The Musical “Magical”, and Time Out magazine declared that “A New West End Hit Has Landed”. Ghost The Musical is set to hit Broadway in April 2012.