Jack Knight (songwriter)
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Originally from Brooklyn, New York, United States, Knight moved with his grandparents to Chesapeake, Virginia, at the age of 17. As a teenager, he performed in a local rap group, and then signed as a solo artist to Def Jam Recordings in 1995. His voice was first heard on Monifah’s “Touch It”, but he has been a songwriter since 1994.
As the first songwriter signed to Sean “Diddy” Combs publishing company in 1998, Knight has written, recorded and produced hit records for artists like Matisyahu, Lil' Kim, Usher, Keyshia Cole, Diddy, Jennifer Lopez, Christina Aguilera, Biggie, Total, Carl Thomas, Chico DeBarge, Rakim, Monifah, Blackstreet, Lyric, Faith Evans, Tamia and many others.
He also started Finding Your Way Worldwide, which has been implemented in Washington Heights, Harlem, London, Stockholm, Sweden, Canada, East New York, Brooklyn and Richmond which is where it’s based. Finding Your Way is a music program that, through the art of songwriting, teaches kids the significance of incorporating and promoting social change in their homes, communities and environment.
"My calling is also giving, teaching and empowering the youth," he says. "This is something else I do on the side besides my job as a songwriter. It’s more than me that I am trying to help. It’s a group of youth that I’m trying to teach life skills through music. This program can revolutionize the way teachers teach urban youth and the way kids with a learning disability learn."
In his 2006 book, The Art of Writing A Hit Song: The Urban Experience, Jack breaks down the process of creating and developing a hit song in seven formulated steps. He also offers online songwriting courses through The Jack Knight Songwriters Academy, which employs an intense curriculum to prepare up and coming songwriters for the mainstream media.
In 1999, Knight decided to move into the realm of recording, releasing his debut album, Gypsy Blues, on Universal Records. He was the first writer signed to Sean 'Diddy' Combs publishing company, the Writing Factory, where he continues to write, record, and produce on a regular basis.
More recently,[when?] Knight traveled to Europe and Africa to collaborate with musicians there and also to promote social change and education for young people around the world. He is completing a DVD of his travels called Finding Your Way: Through The Art of Songwriting to document his mission. In addition, he is at work on new projects for his new multimedia Company Jack Knight Creative.