Paul Hardcastle

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Paul Hardcastle
Birth name Paul Hardcastle
Born (1957-12-10) 10 December 1957 (age 57)
Kensington, London, England
Genres Synthpop, freestyle, electronica, ambient, electro house, breakstep, smooth jazz
Occupation(s) Musician, producer, songwriter, radio presenter (in us)
Instruments Synthesizer, keyboards, piano, acoustic guitar, electric guitar, bass guitar, drums, percussion, programming
Years active 1982–present
Labels Chrysalis, Motown, Hardcastle, Trippin' 'n' Rhythm, V2, Profile

Paul Hardcastle (born 10 December 1957, London, England[1]) is an English composer, musician, and multi-instrumentalist. Although he specializes in the synthesizer, he can also play multiple instruments.


In the early 1980s, Hardcastle played the keyboards on several singles on the Oval record label by the dance music groups Direct Drive and First Light, before going solo.

He achieved some acclaim for his early singles, notably in 1984, the electro-funk/freestyle/instrumental track, "Rain Forest", which along with the track "Sound Chaser", hit number two on the dance chart.[2] "Rain Forest" also hit number five on the soul chart and number fifty-seven on the Hot 100.[3] In 1985, he came to greater prominence with the international hit "19", a song about America's involvement in the Vietnam War and the effect it had on the soldiers who served, using sampled dialogue from an American television documentary about the post-traumatic stress disorder suffered by veterans. Producer Simon Fuller named his company '19 Entertainment' after the song, and the two are known to collaborate.

Hardcastle enjoyed several further hits in the UK, including "Don't Waste My Time" (with vocals by Carol Kenyon) (UK No. 8) and "The Wizard", a UK No. 15 hit that became the theme tune for BBC Television's music chart show Top of the Pops from April 1986 until September 1991. He also had a hit with "Just for Money", which reached No. 19 in the UK and featured Bob Hoskins and Laurence Olivier. Earlier, he had cut a cover version of D-Train's most influential hit "You're the One For Me", segued with his own compositions "Daybreak" and "A.M." Hardcastle also wrote the theme tune for Saturday Live, a popular entertainment show which ran from 1985–1987.

He also made the hit single "The Voyager", which was used for the BBC One programme Holiday.

After 1986, Hardcastle started to specialise in television soundtracks and remixed work, for artists as such as Five Star, Barry White, Third World, Sinitta, Johnny Logan, Hiroshima and Ian Dury. His piece "The Shuffle" was included in the soundtrack of the movie When the Wind Blows.

In 1988, Hardcastle released the concept album, No Winners, which focuses on the potential negative effects of the Cold War arms race. In 2000, he released Hardcastle III, which included a remake of "Rain Forest" and a hit single, "Desire".

Hardcastle has also recorded several synth jazz albums, alternating releases under the pseudonyms Kiss The Sky (with Jaki Graham) and The Jazzmasters, as well as under his real name Paul Hardcastle.[1] Working regularly with vocalists such as Helen Rogers, Becki Biggins and Margo LeDuc, Hardcastle has recruited several saxophonists including Gary Barnacle (on the first album), Snake Davis, Phil Todd, Tony Woods and Rock Hendricks. All these albums have been played on smooth jazz radio in the United States, where some of the most played tracks include "Northern Lights", "Lost in Space", "Desire", "Shine", and "Serene". He won the Billboard Smooth Jazz Artist of the Year award in 2008.

2010's The Jazzmasters VI track "Touch and Go", featuring his son Paul Jr. on saxophone, reached No. 1 on the U.S. Billboard Jazz songs chart, becoming his tenth number one on the Smooth Jazz chart in total.

His album, Hardcastle VI, released in September 2011, features yet another remake of "Rain Forest"—this time mixed with R&B legend Marvin Gaye's signature song, "What's Going On".

In February 2014, Hardcastle was appointed Chairman of NUA Entertainment, which was founded by one of the UK's top businessmen, Neil Utley and his wife, Nicky.[citation needed]

Personal life[edit]

Hardcastle is married to Dolores Baker, and they have three children:[4] Maxine (born April 1986[5][6]), Paul Jr. (born August 1990[7]), and Ritchie (born May 1997).



Year Album
1984 Daybreak (First Light)
1985 Zero One
1985 Rainforest
1985 Paul Hardcastle
1988 No Winners
1990 Sound Syndicate
1993 The Definitive
1997 First Light
1999 Cover To Cover: A Musical Autobiography
2003 The Very Best of Paul Hardcastle 1983–2003
2009 Zero One
2012 Perceptions of Pacha VIII
2012 19 Below Zero
2013 Electrofied 80s: Essential Paul Hardcastle

(Music Club Deluxe release. A division of Demon Music Group)

2014 Movin & Groovin

Smooth jazz albums[edit]

Hardcastle series

Year Album
1994 Hardcastle
1996 Hardcastle 2
1997 Cover To Cover
2002 Hardcastle III
2005 Hardcastle 4
2008 Hardcastle 5
2009 Paul Hardcastle: The Collection
2011 Hardcastle VI
2011 Desire
2013 Hardcastle VII

The Jazzmasters series

Year Album
1993 The Jazzmasters
1995 The Jazzmasters II
1999 The Jazzmasters III
2000 Jazzmasters: The Greatest Hits
2004 The Jazzmasters 4
2004 The Smooth Cuts
2006 The Jazzmasters V
2010 The Jazzmasters VI[8]
2014 The Jazzmasters VII

Kiss The Sky series

Year Album
1992 Kiss The Sky
1994 Millennium sky way

The Chill Lounge series

Year Album
2012 The Chill Lounge, vol.1
2013 The Chill Lounge, vol.2


  • 1984: "You're the One For Me – Daybreak – A.M." (UK No. 41)
  • 1984: "Guilty" (UK No. 553,)
  • 1984: "Rain Forest" (UK No. 41)
  • 1984: "Eat Your Heart Out" (UK No. 59)
  • 1985: "19" (Switzerland No. 1 (7 Weeks) ; Norway No. 1 (7 Weeks) ; Germany No. 1 (6 Weeks) ; UK No. 1 (5 Weeks); Netherlands No. 1 (5 Weeks); New Zealand No. 1 (4 Weeks); Sweden No. 1 (2 Weeks); Austria No. 1; Italy No. 1; Ireland No. 1; US Dance Club Play Chart No. 1 (2 Weeks); France No. 15; US No. 15)
  • 1985 "N-N-Nineteen Not Out" as producer of Rory Bremner's parody single recorded under the name of the Commentators (UK No. 13)
  • 1985: "Rainforest" (re-issue) (US No. 57 / UK No. 53)
  • 1985: "Just for Money" (UK No. 19; Ireland No. 15)
  • 1986: "Don't Waste My Time" (UK No. 8; Ireland No. 15)
  • 1986: "Foolin' Yourself" (UK No. 51)
  • 1986: "The Wizard" (UK No. 15; Ireland No. 10)
  • 1988: "Walk in the Night" (UK No. 54)
  • 1988: "40 Years" (UK No. 53)
  • 1989: "Are You Ready" as Paul Hardcastle Sound Syndication (UK No. 90)
  • 2011: "Rain Forest"/"What's Going On" – Smooth Jazz Indicator Chart (#16)
  • 2011: "Easy Come, Easy Go" – Smooth Jazz Indicator Chart (#1)
  • 2013: "No Stress (At All)" – peak position: #1 (Billboard Smooth Jazz Chart)
  • 2013: "Easy Street" – peak position: #1 (Billboard Smooth Jazz Chart)

Source: [9]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Biography by Steve Huey". Retrieved 18 March 2009. 
  2. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2004). Hot Dance/Disco: 1974–2003. Record Research. p. 117. 
  3. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2004). Top R&B/Hip-Hop Singles: 1942–2004. Record Research. p. 244. 
  4. ^ Paul Hardcastle @ Discogs Retrieved 23 August 2009.
  5. ^ Maxine Hardcastle @ Discogs Retrieved 23 August 2009.
  6. ^ "I'll never work in TV again, howls Playboy model at judge as she's convicted of battering pop star's daughter in nightclub toilet". Daily Mail (London). 24 December 2009. 
  7. ^ Paul Hardcastle, Jr. @ Discogs Retrieved 23 August 2009.
  8. ^ The holidays are coming and so is Jazzmasters 6 – Paul Hardcastle
  9. ^ Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 243. ISBN 1-904994-10-5. 

External links[edit]