Legendary songwriter Paul Anka spoke to students at USC Thornton’s Popular Music Forum on April 22 during a Master Session put on by USC Thornton and the Songwriters Hall of Fame (SHOF). Popular Music Program Chair and SHOF board member Patrice Rushen moderated the conversation.
During the session, Anka discussed how he got started in music, how he’s managed to stay relevant in the industry and where he gets inspiration for his songwriting.
“It’s all part of everything and somewhat unknown who we are. There are not millions of people who succeed as songwriters and artists. If you are successful, don’t think it’s you…there’s something moving us spiritually. It’s magic, and it isn’t just you,” said Anka.
Before the session ended, Rushen and a group of USC Thornton students surprised Anka with a medley of some of his songs including “Diana,” “Put Your Head On My Shoulder,” “She’s A Lady” and “My Way.”