Mark Ronson

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Mark Ronson
Mark-Ronson.jpg
Mark Ronson, 2008 at the North Sea Jazz Festival
Background information
Birth name Mark Daniel Ronson
Born (1975-09-04) 4 September 1975 (age 38)
St John's Wood, London, England[1]
Genres Electronic, hip hop, pop, pop rock[2]
Occupations Musician, DJ, producer, songwriter
Years active 1993–present
Labels Allido/Columbia/RCA/J
Associated acts Amy Winehouse, Bruno Mars, Rufus Wainwright, Ghostface Killah, Black Lips, Lily Allen, Q-Tip, Tawiah, Andrew Wyatt, Duran Duran, Daniel Merriweather, Ol' Dirty Bastard, Jordan Galland, Wale, The Ghost of a Saber Tooth Tiger, Adele, Samantha Ronson, Paul McCartney, Katy B
Website markronson.co.uk

Mark Daniel Ronson (born 4 September 1975[3]) is an English musician, DJ and music producer.

While his debut album Here Comes the Fuzz failed to make an impact on the charts, his second album, Version, included three top-ten hits and won Ronson a Brit Award for British Male Solo Artist in 2008.[4] His third studio album, Record Collection, was released on 27 September 2010.

Early life[edit]

Ronson was born at the Wellington Hospital, St John's Wood. His parents are of Ashkenazi Jewish descent, with ancestors from Austria, Russia, and Lithuania, and Ronson was brought up in Masorti Judaism.[5][6] Ronson's family name was originally Aaronson, but his grandfather Henry Ronson changed it to Ronson.[7] Ronson is the nephew of property tycoon Gerald Ronson. Ronson is related to British Conservative politicians Sir Malcolm Rifkind and Leon Brittan,[8] as well as Odeon Cinemas founder Oscar Deutsch.[9] Ronson has twin sisters who are two years younger than he is, Charlotte Ronson, a fashion designer, and Samantha Ronson, a singer and DJ. Ronson also has five younger half-siblings. Alexander and Annabelle, through his mother's remarriage to Mick Jones as well as Henrietta, David, and Joshua, through his father's remarriage to model Michele First. After his parents broke up, his mother married Foreigner guitarist Mick Jones, which contributed to a childhood surrounded by music.[10] Mark counted Sean Lennon, son of John Lennon and Yoko Ono, amongst his childhood friends.[11]

Career[edit]

Mark Ronson, portrayed in Berlin in 2007

Ronson went to high school at the private Collegiate School in New York.[12] Attending Vassar College and then New York University (NYU), Ronson became a regular at downtown hip hop spots and made his name as a DJ on the New York club scene in 1993, charging $50 per job. Though a novice with little experience, he became known for his diverse, genre-spanning selection. Influenced by funk, the hip hop scene of New York and the more rock influence of the UK (all of which he incorporated in his sets) he attracted a wider audience. He was soon one of the most respected DJs and was being called on for celebrities' private parties. In 1999, Ronson was featured in an ad wearing Tommy Hilfiger denim in the recording studio for an ad campaign for the company.[13]

He provided the score for the 2011 film Arthur.

2001–2005: Here Comes the Fuzz and initial producing[edit]

He moved on, however, to producing music after Nikka Costa's manager heard one of his gigs and introduced the musicians. He produced her song "Everybody Got Their Something", and soon Ronson signed a record contract with Elektra Records. Mark had produced tracks for Hilfiger ads, and in 2001 used the connection to have Costa's single "Like a Feather" used in an ad.[14]

Ronson's first album, Here Comes the Fuzz, was released in 2003 and was critically acclaimed and a financial success, despite initially poor sales. On the album, he wrote the songs, made the beats and played guitar, keyboards, and bass. The album featured artists from diverse genres, including Mos Def, Jack White, Sean Paul, Nikka Costa, Nappy Roots and Rivers Cuomo.[15] The best known song from the album, "Ooh Wee", samples "Sunny" by Boney M and features Nate Dogg, Ghostface Killah, Trife Da God, and Saigon. It was featured that year in the movie Honey and its soundtrack. The song was later used in the movies Hitch and Harold & Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay.[15] Two weeks after releasing Here Comes the Fuzz, Elektra Records dropped him.[16] Ronson has since produced multiple songs on the albums of singers Lamya,[17] Macy Gray,[18] Christina Aguilera, Amy Winehouse, Lily Allen, and Robbie Williams.

Ronson became one of the regular DJs at Justin Timberlake's New York club, Suede, when it opened in 2003.[19]

In 2004, Ronson formed his own record label, Allido Records, a subsidiary of Sony BMG's J Records, along with his longtime manager Rich Kleiman. The first artist he signed to Allido was rapper Saigon, who later left to sign with Just Blaze's Fort Knox Entertainment. He has signed Rhymefest, most well known for winning the Grammy for co-writing Kanye West's "Jesus Walks".

2006–2009: Version[edit]

Ronson released a cover of The Smiths' track "Stop Me If You Think You've Heard This One Before" under the title "Stop Me" on 2 April 2007, featuring singer Daniel Merriweather, which reached number 2 in the UK singles charts, the biggest hit for Ronson to date. Ronson remixed the Bob Dylan song "Most Likely You'll Go Your Way (And I'll Go Mine)" in promotion for the three disc Bob Dylan set titled Dylan released October 2007. Ronson has also produced Candie Payne's "One More Chance (Ronson mix)" in 2007.

The album has been well received by critics. In May 2007 it was awarded the title Album of the Month by the British dance music magazine, Mixmag. On 23 June, the DJ made the cover of the Guardian newspaper's Guide magazine, alongside singer Lily Allen.

In June 2007, Ronson signed DC hip hop artist Wale to Allido Records. In late 2007, he focused on production, working with Daniel Merriweather on his debut album, and recording again with Amy Winehouse and Robbie Williams.[20]

On 24 October 2007 Ronson performed a one-off set at The Roundhouse in Camden, London as part of the BBC Electric Proms 2007. The performance featured the BBC Concert Orchestra and included special guests Terry Hall, Sean Lennon, Tim Burgess, Alex Greenwald, Ricky Wilson, Charlie Waller, Adele and Kyle Falconer.[21]

Ronson received a Grammy Award nomination in early December 2007 for 'Producer of the Year, Non Classical', along with Timbaland and Mike Elizondo. Ronson's work with Amy Winehouse also received substantial praise, gaining 6 nominations. Back to Black, an album mostly produced by Ronson was nominated for 'Album of the Year' and 'Best Pop Vocal Album'. "Rehab" received nods for 'Best Female Pop Vocal Performance', 'Song of the Year' and 'Record of the Year'. Ronson would go on to win three Grammys for 'Producer of the Year' as well as 'Best Pop Vocal Album' and 'Record of the Year' (which he shared with Amy Winehouse) in early February 2008.[22]

Ronson is credited as producer on a mixtape album called Man in the Mirror, released in January 2008 by the rapper Rhymefest which is a tribute to the pop star Michael Jackson. The album features Rhymefest appearing to speak to Michael Jackson using archive audio from interviews with the pop star.

Later in January 2008, Ronson received three nominations for the Brit Awards, including 'Best Male Solo Artist', 'Best Album' (Version) and 'Song of the Year' ("Valerie"). Ronson won his first Brit for 'Best Male Solo Artist' in mid February 2008 over favourite Mika. He also performed a medley of "God Put a Smile upon Your Face" with Adele, "Stop Me" with Daniel Merriweather and "Valerie" with Amy Winehouse.

The performance allowed for a large boost in sales in the iTunes UK Top 100. "Valerie" would jump almost 30 spots in the days after the event, while "Just", "Stop Me" and "Oh My God" all appeared in the chart as well. That same week, Ronson appeared twice in the UK Top 40, with "Valerie" rebounding to number 13 and "Just" at number 31, his fourth Top 40 hit from "Version". The Brits performance also allowed for "Version" to climb 18 spots to number 4.

Around this time, Ronson received his first number one on an international chart (Dutch Top 40) for "Valerie", which has spent four consecutive weeks at the top of the chart. He collaborated with Kaiser Chiefs on their third album.[23]

Ronson has toured the album "Version" vigorously through both the UK and Europe during 2008. Notable sold out performances at The Hammersmith Apollo and Brixton Academy. Ronson is known to champion new upcoming artists on the road with him, such as Sam Sparro and Julian Perretta. Ronson's string backing was provided by the all-female string quartet Demon Strings. In May 2008, Ronson played at the largest private party in the world, the Trinity Ball in Trinity College Dublin.

Ronson in 2007

On 2 July 2008 in Paris, Mark Ronson performed live with Duran Duran for an invited audience. They played new arrangements by Ronson of some Duran Duran songs, along with tracks from the band's new album, Red Carpet Massacre. Ronson & the Version Players also performed songs from his album Version. Simon LeBon sang. As of March 2009 Ronson was working with the group on their upcoming 13th album.[24] The Album, titled All You Need Is Now was released digitally exclusively via Apple's iTunes on 21 December 2010.

2010–present: Record Collection[edit]

At the launch of his most recent Gucci pop-up store in London, Ronson confirmed the name of his new album Record Collection, and said that he hoped to have it out by September 2010. Additionally, Ronson announced the name of his new band, "The Business Intl.'", which is the alias adopted by Ronson on the third studio album. The first single "Bang Bang Bang". which featured rapper Q-Tip and singer MNDR[25] was released on 12 July 2010, where it peaked at number 6 on the UK Singles Chart, giving Ronson his fourth Top 10 hit. The single also saw success on the Irish Singles Chart, where it peaked at number 18. The second single from the album, "The Bike Song", was 19 September 2010[26] and features Kyle Falconer from The View and Spank Rock. The album was released on 27 September 2010. This is the first of Ronson's albums that he has sung on.[27]

In 2010, Ronson was given a vocal track to a song titled "Lovely Way", sung by Michael Jackson, to produce for Jackson's posthumous album Michael, although he never physically met Jackson. He submitted the track, but it did not make the track listing for Michael. Ronson said about the rumours surrounding the vocals on the track (due to the controversy surrounding the Cascio tracks on that same album), "It was definitely him singing. I was given a vocal track to work with but I never actually met Michael. [...] It's in the vein of Elton John's 'Goodbye Yellow Brick Road' and John Lennon's 'Imagine'."[28]

Videos[edit]

Ronson created a video, along with Directors Gary Breslin and Jordan Galland: Circuit Breaker, which is a Homage to video game The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past.[29]

Personal life[edit]

Ronson spends his time between London and New York. His stepfather is Mick Jones from Foreigner, who raised him from the age of seven.[30]

In 2002, he began dating Quincy Jones's daughter, actress-singer Rashida Jones.[31] They became engaged in March 2003, with Ronson proposing by creating a crossword puzzle with the message "Will you marry me".[32]

Ronson became engaged to French actress and singer Joséphine de La Baume, who had previously appeared in the music video for "The Bike Song", in February 2011.[33] They married in Aix-en-Provence, in the South of France, on 3 September 2011.[citation needed]

In 2009 he participated in PETA's "Please Don't Wear Any Fur" campaign.[34] He was also voted the most stylish man in the UK by GQ magazine.[35]

In 2011, a portrait of Ronson was painted by British artist Joe Simpson; the painting was exhibited around the UK, including a solo exhibition at The Royal Albert Hall.[36]

Since childhood, he has been a fan of the New York Knicks.[37]

Discography[edit]

Studio albums[edit]

Year Album details Peak chart positions[38] Certifications[39]
(sales threshold)
UK AUS BEL IRE NL NZ SWI US
2003 Here Comes the Fuzz
  • Released: 8 September 2003
  • Label: Elephant Records
70
  • UK: Silver
2007 Version 2 21 44 51 129
  • UK: 2× Platinum
2010 Record Collection [A] 2 6 60 16 67 33 40 81
  • UK: Gold
  • AUS: Gold
"—" denotes releases that did not chart

Singles[edit]

Year Title Chart positions[38] Album
UK AUS AUT IRE NL NZ SWI
Triple J
2003 "Ooh Wee" (featuring Ghostface Killah, Nate Dogg, Trife & Saigon)
15
9
82
Here Comes the Fuzz
2006 "Just" (featuring Alex Greenwald)
48
Exit Music
2007 "Toxic" / "God Put a Smile upon Your Face"
Version
"Stop Me" (featuring Daniel Merriweather)
2
38
11
"Oh My God" (featuring Lily Allen)
8
72
21
"Valerie" (featuring Amy Winehouse)
2
75
5
3
1
39
4
2008 "Just" (featuring Phantom Planet)
36
2010 "Bang Bang Bang" (featuring MNDR & Q-Tip) [A]
5
16
75
18
68
25
65
17
Record Collection
"The Bike Song" (featuring Kyle Falconer & Spank Rock) [A]
17
66
35
"Somebody to Love Me" (featuring Boy George & Andrew Wyatt) [A]
55
10
2012 "Anywhere in the World" (with Katy B)
55
68
95
84
40
non-album single
Other charted songs
Year Title Chart positions[38] Album
UK US Rhy
2003 "International Affair" (featuring Sean Paul & Tweet)
21
Here Comes the Fuzz
2007 "God Put a Smile upon Your Face" (featuring The Daptone Horns)
63
"Stop Me" – single
"No One Knows" (featuring Domino)
66

Notes:

  • A – As Mark Ronson & The Business Intl.

Production discography[edit]

Albums[edit]

Singles[edit]

Awards[edit]

Grammy Awards[edit]

Year Nominated work Award Result
2008 Himself Producer of the Year, Non-Classical Won
2008 Rehab with Amy Winehouse Record of the Year Won
2008 Back To Black with Amy Winehouse Best Pop Vocal Album Won
2008 Back To Black with Amy Winehouse Album of The Year Nominated
2013 Locked Out of Heaven with Bruno Mars Record of The Year Nominated
2013 Unorthodox Jukebox with Bruno Mars Best Pop Vocal Album Won

The BRIT Awards[edit]

Year Nominated work Award Result
2008 Himself Best British Male Solo Artist Won
2008 Valerie (feat. Amy Winehouse) Best Single Nominated
2008 Version Best Album Nominated
2008 Back To Black Best Album Nominated

Other Awards[edit]

  • Vodafone Live Music Awards – Best Live Male – Winner 2008
  • Glamour Women of the Year – Men of the Year – Winner 2008
  • MOBO Awards 2010 Best Video – Bang Bang Bang (feat. Q-Tip & MNDR), Best Song – Bang Bang Bang (feat. Q-Tip & MNDR)

References[edit]

  1. ^ Mark Ronson Biography Markronson.net
  2. ^ http://www.allmusic.com/artist/mark-ronson-mn0000237773
  3. ^ Mark Ronson profile
  4. ^ [1]. Brits.co.uk. Retrieved 8 May 2012
  5. ^ Guilt & Pleasure. Guiltandpleasure.com (26 September 2007). Retrieved 3 August 2011.
  6. ^ Mark Ronson interview. DailyJews. Retrieved 3 August 2011.
  7. ^ Joseph, Claudia (20 January 2008). "The truth about the svengali seen paying a late-night visit to troubled Amy Winehouse's hotel". Daily Mail (UK). Retrieved 11 January 2011. 
  8. ^ "The man Amy and Lily go to when they want a hit". The Times (London). 27 January 2008. Retrieved 12 May 2010. 
  9. ^ Sansom, Ian (26 June 2010). "Great dynasties of the world: The Dexter-Joneses". The Guardian (London). 
  10. ^ Petridis, Alexis (6 October 2007). "Cover boy". The Guardian (London). Retrieved 12 May 2010. 
  11. ^ https://music.yahoo.com/blogs/yahoo-music/foreigners-mick-jones-reminisces-about-opening-for-the-beatles-215215320.html
  12. ^ Caramanica, Jon. (22 April 2007) How Mark Ronson Went From D.J. to White-Soul Producer. New York Magazine. Retrieved 3 August 2011.
  13. ^ Cardona, Mercedes M. (8 February 1999), "Hilfiger's new apparel lines getting individual ad efforts". Advertising Age. 70 (6):24
  14. ^ Hall, Rashaun (5 May 2001), "Virgin's Nikka Costa Goes Beyond Family Ties". Billboard. 113 (18):14
  15. ^ a b Swanson, David (24 July 2003) "Mark Ronson". Rolling Stone. (927):27
  16. ^ "Mark Ronson Shows Off His 'Record Collection' on New Album". Billboard. 30 August 2010. Retrieved 26 January 2011. 
  17. ^ Paoletta, Michael (13 July 2002), "J Records' Lamya Experiences 'Learning' Curve With Debut Album". Billboard. 114 (28):21
  18. ^ M. P.; Paoletta, Michael (2 August 2003), "The Trouble With Being Myself". Billboard. 115 (31):35
  19. ^ Cruz, Clarissa (14 March 2003), "Hot Spot". Entertainment Weekly (700):13
  20. ^ ''Mark Ronson: He's got it covered'' video interview with. Stv.tv. Retrieved 3 August 2011.
  21. ^ Mark Ronson and special guests with the BBC concert orchestra. BBC. Retrieved 3 August 2011.
  22. ^ [2][dead link]
  23. ^ "Mark Ronson: 'New Kaiser Chiefs album echoes debut'". NME. 5 May 2008. Retrieved 28 May 2008. 
  24. ^ Duran Duran recording with Ronson BBC 20 March 2009. BBC News (3 July 2009). Retrieved 3 August 2011.
  25. ^ Zane Lowe's Hottest Records blog: Hottests Record: Mark Ronson and The Business Intl' – 'Bang Bang Bang'. BBC (24 May 2010). Retrieved 3 August 2011.
  26. ^ The Bike Song: Mark Ronson: Amazon.co.uk: MP3 Downloads. Amazon.co.uk. Retrieved 3 August 2011.
  27. ^ "Interview with Mark Ronson". Lifelounge. 9 February 2011. Retrieved 9 February 2011. 
  28. ^ "Mark Ronson's Michael Jackson track 'definitely' features King of Pop's vocals". NME. 6 November 2010. Retrieved 6 November 2010. 
  29. ^ Transmissions, Souterrain. (15 May 2010) Mark Ronson's Circuit Breaker (Homage to Zelda) – Video Download on Vimeo. Vimeo.com. Retrieved 3 August 2011.
  30. ^ [3] Interview with Mick Jones on Songfacts.com
  31. ^ (13 May 2002), "rashida jones". People. 57 (18):140
  32. ^ Abel, Olivia (17 March 2003), "Passages". People. 59 (10):81
  33. ^ "Mark Ronson gets engaged to his Agent Provocateur model and actress girlfriend Josephine de La Baume". Daily Mail. 10 February 2011. Retrieved 10 February 2011. 
  34. ^ Mark posing for Peta
  35. ^ Mark Ronson | Ronson Tops Fashion List. Contactmusic (1 April 2009). Retrieved 3 August 2011.
  36. ^ NME "Musician Portraits - Joe Simpson's paintings of rock stars" "2011"
  37. ^ [4] Purplerevolver.com (23 Jan 2013). Retrieved 4 February 2013
  38. ^ a b c "Mark Ronson's worldwide chart positions and trajectories". aCharts.us. Retrieved 23 October 2007.
  39. ^ http://www.bpi.co.uk/certifiedawards/search.aspx

External links[edit]