Patrick Leonard

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For other people named Patrick Leonard, see Patrick Leonard (disambiguation).
Patrick Leonard
Born Patrick Ray Leonard
(1956-03-14) March 14, 1956 (age 60)
Crystal Falls, Michigan, U.S.
Occupation Songwriter, keyboardist, film composer, music producer
Children 3

Patrick Ray Leonard (born March 14, 1956 in Crystal Falls, Michigan) is an American songwriter, keyboardist, film composer, and music producer, best known for his longtime collaboration with Madonna. "The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway, Dark Side of the Moon, The Wall – that's what I grew up with and that's what I dreamed of doing one day," he recalled in 1992. "I was a big Gentle Giant fan. I was a huge Jethro Tull fan. But I had to feed my children and heat my house, so I wrote some songs with a little girl who became extremely popular. It's really that simple."[1]

His work with Madonna includes her albums True Blue (1986), Who's That Girl (1987), Like a Prayer (1989), I'm Breathless (1990) and Ray of Light (1998). He scored her 2008 documentary I Am Because We Are, played keyboards with her at Live Aid (1985),[2] and was musical director and keyboardist on The Virgin Tour (1985) and the Who's That Girl World Tour (1987).

Leonard has worked with a wide variety of artists including late-period Pink Floyd and solo Roger Waters, Elton John, Leonard Cohen, Bryan Ferry, Julian Lennon, Rod Stewart, Michael Jackson, Fleetwood Mac, Jeff Beck, Bryan Adams, Peter Cetera, Jewel, Blue October, Duncan Sheik, Michael W. Smith, Marianne Faithfull, and Robbie Robertson. He was half of the art-pop group Toy Matinee with Kevin Gilbert and Third Matinee with Richard Page. He has also acted as composer for a variety of films and stage productions.[3]

More recently Leonard has collaborated with Leonard Cohen, acting as a writer and producer for 2012’s Old Ideas and 2014’s Popular Problems, and co-writer, co-producer of 2016’s You Want It Darker.[4] "Nevermind," a song from Popular Problems that Leonard co-wrote and produced, was featured as the title theme for Season 2 of HBO's True Detective.[5] Speaking of Patrick in 2016, Cohen remarked that, "He is such a magnificent composer. I don’t think there’s anybody working today with those kinds of skills."[6] Leonard is currently working on a Broadway musical and a modular synthesizer project.[7]

In 1997, Leonard released the instrumental album Rivers on his own record label, Unitone.[8] Leonard has three children: a daughter Jessica, a writer (for whom Madonna's song "Dear Jessie" was written), and two sons, Sean, who plays keyboards, and Jordan, a projection mapper and VJ under the name Pickels Visuals.

Early career[edit]

Leonard entered the music business with late 1970s Chicago-based pop rock band Whisper, then later the same band membership, Trillion (name changed for legal reasons), featuring future Toto singer Dennis "Fergie" Frederiksen on lead vocals. His early career also featured short stints as a keyboardist in Frank Zappa’s band in 1976 and The Allman Brothers Band in 1980.[9]

He went on to act as musical director and lead keyboardist for the Jackson Victory Tour in 1984.[10][11]

Work in film and stage[edit]

Selected film credits[edit]

Selected stage credits[edit]

Selected music credits[edit]


  1. ^ Sandall, Robert (February 1992). "The song and dance debate". Q: 13. 
  2. ^ Plantier, Boris. "Patrick Leonard remembers his musical memories and his work with Madonna". Yuzu Melodies. Retrieved 2016-10-11. 
  3. ^ "Patrick Leonard | Credits | AllMusic". AllMusic. Retrieved 2016-10-10. 
  4. ^ "You Want It Darker - Leonard Cohen's 2016 Studio Album". Retrieved 2016-10-10. 
  5. ^ "A History of True Detective's New Theme Song, 'Nevermind'". Vulture. 2015-06-22. Retrieved 2016-10-11. 
  6. ^ "Leonard Cohen Corrects Himself: 'I Intend to Stick Around Until 120'". Billboard. Retrieved 2016-10-16. 
  7. ^ "leonardyowell". leonardyowell. Retrieved 2016-10-10. 
  8. ^ Rivers, Rounder / Umgd, 2000-01-01, retrieved 2016-10-10 
  9. ^ "leonardyowell". leonardyowell. Retrieved 2016-10-10. 
  10. ^ Benson, Carol; Metz, A. Madonna the Companion Two Decades of Commentary (metz/benson). Music Sales Group. ISBN 9780857128164. 
  11. ^ Plantier, Boris. "Patrick Leonard remembers his musical memories and his work with Madonna". Yuzu Melodies. Retrieved 2016-10-10. 
  12. ^ Ebert, Roger. "At Close Range Movie Review & Film Summary (1986) | Roger Ebert". Retrieved 2016-10-11. 
  13. ^ Ebert, Roger. "Nothing in Common Movie Review (1986) | Roger Ebert". Retrieved 2016-10-11. 
  14. ^ "Movie Review - - Review/Film; Some Collegiate Help for a Homeless Zany -". Retrieved 2016-10-11. 
  15. ^ Rissman, Nathan (2009-03-25), I Am Because We Are, retrieved 2016-10-11 
  16. ^ "PHOTOGRAPHY ARCHIVE". Retrieved 2016-10-11. 
  17. ^ "'Lullaby' to Feature Music by Patrick Leonard | Film Music Reporter". Retrieved 2016-10-11. 
  18. ^ Iscove, Robert (2006-11-21), The Ten Commandments: The Musical, retrieved 2016-10-11 
  19. ^, New York Cool,. "New York Cool - Martha Graham Dance Company". Retrieved 2016-10-11. 
  20. ^ Sandall, Robert (February 1992). "The song and dance debate". Q: 13. 

External links[edit]