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David Foster

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Biography

During the '80s, '90s, and early 2000s, David Foster was among the most commercially successful producers and composers in all of popular music, lending his signature sweeping power ballad aesthetic to smash hits from Celine Dion, Whitney Houston, and Josh Groban while virtually defining the adult contemporary format. Born in Victoria, British Columbia, Foster began studying piano at the age of five and enrolled in the University of Washington's music program eight years later. He joined Chuck Berry's backing band as a 16-year-old and relocated to Los Angeles in 1971 with his group Skylark, scoring a major hit the following year with the single "Wildflower." Foster also became a sought-after session keyboardist, appearing on recordings from superstars including John Lennon, Barbra Streisand, Diana Ross, and Rod Stewart. Foster's production career began when he helmed the 1976 eponymous debut from his own group, Attitudes. He soon turned to outside projects as well, writing and producing material for Hall & Oates, Deniece Williams, Carole Bayer Sager, Boz Scaggs, and the Average White Band. In 1979, he earned his first Grammy Award for penning Earth, Wind and Fire's "After the Love Has Gone." From there, Foster's career exploded, and he was soon writing and producing for artists like Kenny Rogers, the Tubes, and Kenny Loggins. In 1982, he won a second Grammy for producing the original cast album to the Broadway hit Dreamgirls; he also composed and produced Chicago's hit "Hard to Say I'm Sorry," followed in 1983 by work on Lionel Richie's blockbuster Can't Slow Down. With 1984's Chicago 17, Foster scored his greatest success to date, with the smash single "Hard Habit to Break" earning him a Grammy for Producer of the Year. A year later, Foster wrote and produced John Parr's hit "St. Elmo's Fire (Man in Motion)," and in 1986 he reunited with Chicago -- not only for their 18 LP, which launched the hit "Will You Still Love Me," but also with the group's singer, Peter Cetera, for whom he wrote the chart-topping "The Glory of Love." By now Foster was among the most successful producers in pop. Though reviled by critics, his work was enormously successful on the charts, with dozens of Top 40 hits attributed to his name. However, he was atypically quiet during the latter half of the 1980s, most notably teaming with Neil Diamond on his 1988 album The Best Years of Our Lives and working on a variety of film projects and one-off studio dates. In 1990, Foster began his collaboration with Celine Dion, writing and producing material for her Unison album and generating the hit "Have a Heart." A year later, he teamed with Natalie Cole for her mega-hit Unforgettable and won three more Grammys: Record of the Year, Album of the Year, and Producer of the Year. In 1992, Foster collaborated with Whitney Houston on the multi-platinum soundtrack to her hit film The Bodyguard, which netted him another Album of the Year Grammy at the following year's award ceremony, with the blockbuster single "I Will Always Love You" also winning Record of the Year. Again, he took home Producer of the Year honors as well; additionally, "When I Fall in Love," the theme to Sleepless in Seattle performed by Celine Dion and Clive Griffin, garnered Foster another trophy as arranger. For Dion, he next produced 1993's The Colour of My Love, which spawned the smash "The Power of Love," and a year later, he helmed All-4-One's I Swear. With Dion's 1996 Falling into You, Foster again took home the Album of the Year Grammy; the blockbuster Because You Loved Me, whose title track was the theme song for the romantic drama Up Close & Personal, was also a nominee in the Record of the Year category. A major hit from that same year was Toni Braxton's "Un-Break My Heart." David Foster's accolades stretched into the 21st century, when he helped launch the multi-platinum careers of two male crooners: Josh Groban and Michael Bublé. He continued releasing his own material, too, having issued over ten albums since the early '80s. Foster toured as well, often employing a collaborative "Foster and friends" approach for his performances. That approach was captured on The Hit Man Returns, a live album taken from a 2010 concert that featured guest performances by Seal, Martina McBride, Donna Summer, and more than ten other artists with whom Foster had previously worked. ~ Jason Ankeny
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Top Tracks

  1.   Track
    Popularity
  2.   Carol of the Bells
  3.   Grown-Up Christmas List
  4.   Blue Christmas
  5.   Love Theme from St. Elmo's Fire by Kenny G
  6.   Water Fountain
  7.   The Prayer featuring Andrea Bocelli
  8.   Hard to Say I'm Sorry
  9.   And When She Danced (Love Theme from Stealing Home) by Marilyn Martin
  10.   Just Out of Reach
  11.   You're the Voice
  12.   Flight of the Snowbirds
  13.   After the Love Has Gone
  14.   The Power Of Love by Pia Toscano
  15.   Bridge Over Troubled Water featuring Brian McKnight
  16.   Through the Fire by Reneé Olstead
  17.   The Best of Me
  18.   Looking Through Your Eyes
  19.   Freedom
  20.   St. Elmo's Fire (Man in Motion)
  21.   Love, Look What You've Done to Me
  22.   To Love You More featuring Katharine McPhee
  23.   St. Elmo's Fire (Man In Motion) by Fernando Varela
  24.   We've Got Tonight by Martina McBride
  25.   Because You Loved Me by Celine Dion
  26.   The First Noel
  27.   I'll Be Home for Christmas
  28.   Morming to Morning
  29.   Winter Games
  30.   Piano Concerto in G
  31.   Georgetown
  32.   Sajé
  33.   Elizabeth
  34.   Who's Gonna Love You Tonight
  35.   Tapdance
  36.   Theme from The Color Purple (Mailbox/Proud Theme)
  37.   Gazebo
  38.   Inside You
  39.   Walkaway
  40.   River of Love
  41.   Movie Montage
  42.   Who's Holding Donna Now?
  43.   You're the Inspiration
  44.   Is There a Chance
  45.   Living for the Moment
  46.   The Prayer featuring Fernando Varela
  47.   The Bodyguard Medley
  48.   All By Myself by Pia Toscano
  49.   Anxiety
  50.   White Christmas
  51.   Conscience
  52.   The Ballet
  53.   Stealing Home
  54.   3 Themes
  55.   All I Ever Needed
  56.   We Were So Close
  57.   This Must Be Love
  58.   Victorious
  59.   Voices That Care
  60.   Glory of Love
  61.   Tell Him featuring Loren Allred
  62.   Never Enough by Loren Allred
  63.   Something To Shout About – Betty Boop by Katharine McPhee
  64.   Hate My Mom
  65.   Time Passing
  66.   Playing With Fire
  67.   Katie's Theme
  68.   Firedance
  69.   One Step Closer
  70.   Home Movies
  71.   All That My Heart Can Hold
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