John Parr

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John Parr
Parr performing in 2011
Parr performing in 2011
Background information
Birth nameJohn Stephen Parr
Born (1952-11-18) 18 November 1952 (age 71)[1]
Worksop, Nottinghamshire, England
OriginSherwood Forest, England
Occupation(s)Singer-songwriter, musician
Instrument(s)Vocals, guitar, bass guitar, piano, keyboards
Years active1964–present

John Stephen Parr (born 18 November 1952) is an English musician, singer, and songwriter, best known for his 1985 single "St. Elmo's Fire (Man in Motion)", charting at number one in the US and number six in the UK and for his 1984 US number six rock single "Naughty Naughty".[2] He has written and performed ten major motion-picture theme songs, including the themes for Three Men and a Baby and The Running Man. Parr has sold over 10 million albums and was nominated for a Grammy award for "St. Elmo's Fire" in 1985.[3]


"Naughty Naughty" was Parr's first U.S. top-40 hit record, reaching No. 23 on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1985. In 1985, Parr toured with his band "The Business" supporting Toto, his first show with Toto at Carowinds Paladium (Charlotte, North Carolina), and playing 10,000-seat venues across America.[4] By the end of the tour, David Foster asked Parr to record a song for the film St. Elmo's Fire. Parr and Foster wrote "St. Elmo's Fire" in honour of wheelchair athlete and activist Rick Hansen; it became the theme to St. Elmo's Fire[5] (a "Brat Pack" film unrelated to Hansen's life or achievements).[6]

Parr later wrote "Under a Raging Moon" with Julia Downes for Roger Daltrey,[6] a song that paid tribute to Keith Moon and told the story of the Who.

Parr was soon singing with Marilyn Martin on the song "Through the Night", from the Quicksilver soundtrack (1986). Parr wrote and produced further tracks for Martin's debut album, including the hit "Night Moves". A year after, he wrote and sang the title songs "The Minute I Saw You", from Three Men and a Baby soundtrack, and the power ballad "Restless Heart" (a.k.a. "Running Away With You (Restless Heart)"), from The Running Man soundtrack (this song was re-released on the Man with a Vision album). After the success of Meat Loaf's album, Parr contributed to the next album with the hit duet "Rock 'n' Roll Mercenaries".[5]

On 20 July 2007, Parr and his band opened for Bryan Adams at the Keepmoat Stadium in Parr's home town Doncaster.[7]

In 2012, Parr released a revised version of "St. Elmo's Fire" entitled "Tim Tebow's Fire". It included the following lyrics: "'You know I’m out there/Down on one knee/A prisoner/And I’m tryin’ to break free'".[3]

Family life[edit]

One of Parr's sons, Ben, is an actor who is best known for the role of Freddie in the soap Hollyoaks. His first appearance was in the episode broadcast on 4 January 2007.[8]


Studio albums[edit]

Live albums[edit]

  • Letter to America (2011)

Soundtrack albums[edit]

  • Paris (1989)


Year Title Peak chart positions Album
1984 "Naughty Naughty" 23 6 58 John Parr
1985 "Magical" 73 28
"St. Elmo's Fire" 1 2 4 6 St. Elmo's Fire soundtrack
"Love Grammar" 89 John Parr
1986 "Don't Leave Your Mark on Me"
"Rock 'n' Roll Mercenaries" (with Meat Loaf) 31 Blind Before I Stop
"Blame It on the Radio" 88 Running the Endless Mile
"Two Hearts" 104[11]
"Running the Endless Mile"
"Don't Worry 'Bout Me"
1988 "Restless Heart" The Running Man soundtrack
1990 "Always on my Mind" Butterbrot soundtrack
1991 "Westward Ho" Go Trabi Go soundtrack
1992 "Man with a Vision" Man with a Vision
"It's Startin' All Over Again"
1994 "The River Runs Deep" Under Parr
1996 "Size of the Boat"
2006 "St. Elmo's Fire" (re-recording) 81[12] Non-album single
"New Horizon"
(remix of "St. Elmo's Fire (Man in Motion)" as "John Parr vs. Tommyknockers")
2007 "Walking Out of the Darkness" 155
2019 "The Minute I Saw You"


  1. ^ Search Results for England & Wales Births 1837-2006,
  2. ^ Linda Moleski (27 December 1986). "John Parr, a man in motion, has new LP". Billboard. p. 34. ISSN 0006-2510.
  3. ^ a b Levy, Glen (11 January 2012). "John Parr Updates St. Elmo's Fire Theme Song for Tim Tebow". Time. Retrieved 7 November 2019.
  4. ^ "St Elmo's Fire musician John Parr performing in Westwoodside this weekend". Archived from the original on 22 January 2014.
  5. ^ a b Colin Larkin, ed. (1999). The Virgin Encyclopedia of Heavy Rock (First ed.). Virgin Books. p. 340. ISBN 0-7535-0257-7.
  6. ^ a b Hunt, Dennis (30 August 1985). "Rocker Parr propelled by hot 'St. Elmo's Fire'". The Bulletin. Retrieved 2 October 2010.
  7. ^ "John Parr at Keepmoat stadium Doncaster on 20th July 2007". NME. Retrieved 14 November 2012
  8. ^ "Actor Ben sparks TV fame with strip scene". Sheffield Star. Johnston Press Digital Publishing. 2 January 2007. Retrieved 2 October 2010.
  9. ^ Kent, David (1993). Australian Chart Book 1970–1992 (illustrated ed.). St Ives, N.S.W.: Australian Chart Book. p. 229. ISBN 0-646-11917-6.
  10. ^ Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 417. ISBN 1-904994-10-5.
  11. ^ "Gallup Top 200 Singles". Gallup. 18 October 1986. Retrieved 9 December 2022 – via
  12. ^ "Chart Log UK: Rodney P. - The Pussycat Dolls". Retrieved 7 November 2019.

External links[edit]