Seth Swirsky

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Seth Swirsky
Seth-swirsky.jpg
Seth Swirsky in 2017
Background information
Birth name Seth Swirsky
Born (1960-08-05) August 5, 1960 (age 58)
Origin New Haven, Connecticut
Genres Pop music
Occupation(s) Songwriter, author, recording artist (Jem Records), baseball memorabilia collector, filmmaker
Instruments Guitar, piano, drums, singer
Years active 1980–present
Associated acts Air Supply, Taylor Dayne, Celine Dion, Al Green, Michael McDonald, Olivia Newton-John, Tina Turner, Rufus Wainwright
Website Seth.com

Seth Swirsky (born August 5, 1960, New Haven, Connecticut) is an American pop music songwriter (including the Grammy-nominated "Tell It To My Heart"), an author, a recording artist, a filmmaker, a political writer and a noted baseball memorabilia collector.

Songwriter[edit]

Gold single US.jpg

In 1980, at the age of 20, Seth Swirsky wrote the national jingle for Thomas' English Muffins.[1]

After graduating from Dartmouth College in 1982,[2] Swirsky wrote the Grammy-nominated hit "Tell It To My Heart" with Ernie Gold for Taylor Dayne.[3][4] The song was on the Billboard Pop Singles Chart for six months in 1988, reaching No. 7 (gold single pictured left).[5]

The song was also a No. 1 hit in Germany, The Netherlands and Sweden and No. 3 in England.[4] In 2002, Kelly Llorenna’s version of the song went to No. 9 on the British charts.[6] The song won Swirsky an ASCAP songwriter’s award for being one of the most performed songs of the year.[7] In 2006, the song was recorded by the Royal Gigolos and spent two weeks on the Swiss charts at No. 2.[8] The song was used in the national ad campaign for Cheetos in 2016.[9]

Swirsky wrote Dayne's follow-up top ten hit, "Prove Your Love," with Arnie Roman.[10] That song was a No. 7 Billboard pop hit as well as a No. 1 Billboard dance hit.[5] It reached No. 1 in Switzerland, No. 4 in Germany and No. 8 in England.[11]

Swirsky wrote "Love is a Beautiful Thing," which was recorded by Al Green for his 1995 album Your Heart's in Good Hands.[12] It was Green's last charted single (No. 56 in the UK).[13] Al Green's version was also used as Revlon's theme song in their international ad campaign in 2004.[14]

Swirsky composed "Instant Pleasure" for Rufus Wainwright, which was featured in Adam Sandler's Big Daddy (1999).[citation needed] He wrote "Did You Give Enough Love" with Arnie Roman for Celine Dion (a top 20 song in Canada),[1] "Tear it Up" with Gardner Cole for Michael McDonald[15] (a Billboard top 20 Adult Contemporary hit[15] and top 40 British charting single[16]), "After All"[1][15] for Air Supply, "Not Gonna Be the One" for Olivia Newton-John's Greatest Hits album, Back to Basics: The Essential Collection 1971–1992[17](which reached No. 2 in Australia[18] and No. 12 in the UK[19]) and "Christmas Lullaby" for Faith Evans.[15] Others he has written songs for include Jane Weidlin[20] of The Go-Go's, Peter Allen,[21] Lara Fabian, The Four Tops, The Spinners, The Delfonics, Deniece Williams, Brenda K. Starr,[21] Trey Lorenz, Melissa Manchester, Rita Coolidge, Exposé[22] and Wild Orchid.

During his career he has collaborated with Eric Carmen[15] of Raspberries, David Pack[23] of Ambrosia, Marshall Crenshaw, Felix Cavaliere of The Rascals, Cy Curnin[24] of The Fixx, Eric Schenkman of Spin Doctors, Michael Bolton, Natalie Merchant, Jim Ellison[25] of Material Issue, Gerry Goffin, Chynna Phillips and Steve Kipner,[21] among others.[26]

Swirsky was featured as the "Writer of the Week" in the 2011 Nov./Dec.issue of American Songwriter magazine.[27] That same year, he sang the National Anthem before a Cubs baseball game at Wrigley Field.[28]

Mariah Carey plagiarism lawsuit[edit]

In 2000, Swirsky and co-writer Warryn Campbell filed a copyright infringement lawsuit claiming that the Mariah Carey song "Thank God I Found You" plagiarized "One of Those Love Songs", a song which Swirsky and Campbell wrote for Xscape's 1998 Traces of My Lipstick album.[29]

In the precedent-setting Swirsky v. Carey decision, which clarified the standard for proving copyright infringement, the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit overturned the initial 2002 dismissal of the case.[30][31][32] The case was settled out of court in April 2006.[33]

Recordings[edit]

Swirsky was named in Music Connection magazine's December 2010 issue as one of the Hot 100 unsigned artists of the year.[34]

Instant Pleasure[edit]

In 2005, Seth Swirsky's first solo album, Instant Pleasure, won Best Pop Album at that year's Los Angeles Music awards.[35] Guest appearances on the 11-song album, produced by Jewel drummer Dorian Crozier, include Andy Sturmer of Jellyfish, The Rembrandts, Michael Chavez of John Mayer's band and Justin Meldal-Johnsen of Beck. Several tracks from the album were featured on XM Radio's The Loft's "In Spite of All the Danger" program.

Watercolor Day[edit]

Swirsky’s second solo album, Watercolor Day, was released on May 18, 2010.[36] The title song, Watercolor Day, won Best Pop Song of the year at The Hollywood Music in Media Awards (HMMA’s) on November 18, 2010.[37][38][39] The headline for Goldmine Magazine for their May 10, 2010 issue was "Seth Swirsky’s Watercolor Day is the first great power pop record of 2010."[40] It was named the No. 4 Best Pop record in their 2010 year-end poll.[41] Mike Marrone, the Program Director of the satellite radio station XM/Sirius The Loft, declared, on air, that Watercolor Day was the station's "Album of the Summer."[42] The Audities (which consists of writers, musicians, industry observers and pop music fans) named Watercolor Day the No. 2 album of 2010 in their year-end poll (out of 310 pop records released that year).[43] Rich Rossi, writing for PowerPopOverDose.com, listed the "Watercolor Day" as his No. 1 powerpop album of the year.[44] Powerpopaholic[45] and Pop Fair [46] named Watercolor Day as the 4th Best Power Pop album of 2010. In Tim Cain's 2010 Top 20 year-end "Best Of" list in the Illinois Herald Review, he included Watercolor Day at No. 14.[47] DJ Bob Brainen of the New York City radio station WFMU listed Watercolor Day as one of his Top 9 records of 2010.[48] Internet Radio DJ Sparky Shockpop named Watercolor Day as the No. 1 record on his Top 30 of 2010 year-end list.[49]

Circles and Squares[edit]

Swirsky’s 3rd solo record, the 16-song, Circles and Squares, was released by Grimble Records on August 19, 2016.[50] The Wall Street Journal’s Marc Myers wrote "On his new album, Circles and Squares, Seth has captured the spirit and textured sound of the Fab Four in their late period.[51] Goldmine Magazine called Circles and Squares a “tour-de-force that’s not to be missed," comparing it to Paul McCartney’s 1970’s solo debut, McCartney.[52] The songs Shine and Circles and Squares were "DJ PICKS" on the taste-making Los Angeles radio station KCRW.[53][54] Swirsky played all of the instruments on the album, except for two small parts.[55] The fourth song from the album, Far Away, was nominated for Song of the Year at the 2016 Hollywood Music and Movie Awards.[56][57]

Circles and Squares was named the #2 Album of the Year on the influential International Pop Overthrow's year-end list of Best Pop Records of 2016.[58] It was also named the #2 Album of the Year at Pop Fair[59] and Power Pop News.[60] It was named #5 in both Absolute Powerpop's Top 100 Year End poll[61] and Powerpop Station's Top 50[62] as well as #7 by Goldmine Magazine.[63]

The Red Button[edit]

Swirsky's album of pop songs, She's About to Cross My Mind, recorded with Mike Ruekberg under the group name The Red Button, was released in February 2007.[64]

The CD was also ranked the "Top of the Pops - Overall Best of 2007" by VillageRecords.com.[65]

In a year-end poll of the top pop records of the year, She's About to Cross My Mind was ranked No. 1 (out of 125) by Absolute Powerpop.[66] Pop music journalist and author of "Shake Some Action: The Ultimate Power Pop Guide," John Borack, ranked "She's About to Cross My Mind" No. 1 in his Top 20 Best Albums of 2007.[67] Pop journalist and International Pop Overthrow founder David Bash ranked the album No. 8 (out of 125) in his year-end 2007.[68]

Another song from the album, Cruel Girl, was named the 2nd Best Song of 2007 by Popbang Radio.[69]

A second album by The Red Button, entitled "As Far As Yesterday Goes," was released on June 21, 2011.[70] It was voted No. 7 (out of 748 entries) in the 2011 year-end poll taken by readers of the online music group Audities.[71]

The first single on "As Far As Yesterday Goes" -- Caught in the Middle—was named "The Coolest Song in the World" (for the week of July 11, 2011) on "Little Steven" Van Zandt's syndicated radio show The Underground Garage.[72]

The song Picture from The Red Button's second album was nominated for Best Pop Song at the 2011 Hollywood Music and Media Awards in Los Angeles on November 17, 2011.[73]

The Red Button was named to Music Connection Magazine’s 2011 Hot 100 Unsigned Artist list.[74]

The Red Button was signed by Jem Records in March, 2017, and released its third album called "Now It’s All This!", on October 20, 2017.[75] The liner notes for the two CD retrospective were written by The Beatles Sirius channel and "Breakfast With The Beatles" DJ Chris Carter.[75]

The Red Button featuring Peter Noone[edit]

In 2018, Peter Noone recorded one of Swirsky’s songs, Ooh Girl, that originally was recorded by The Red Button. The single release was billed as The Red Button featuring Peter Noone. Billboard.com premiered the video of the song.[76]

Drink a Toast to Innocence: A Tribute to Lite Rock[edit]

In 2013, Swirsky recorded Henry Gross's 1976 hit Shannon for the double CD compilation album.[77]

Baseball collection[edit]

Mookieball.jpg

Swirsky's baseball collection included the ball that went between Bill Buckner's legs in the 1986 World Series (it was originally owned by Charlie Sheen; Swirsky got it in April, 2000);[78] the only known bottle of 1986 sparkling wine from the Red Sox celebration that would never be;[79]Reggie Jackson's third home run ball from the 1977 World Series; a ball signed by The Beatles the night they played their famous Shea Stadium concert in 1965; Tom Seaver's 1969 World Series jersey; the only known surviving ball from the second game of Johnny Vander Meer's two consecutive no-hitters, and the letter written by baseball commissioner Kenesaw Mountain Landis banning Shoeless Joe Jackson from playing Major League Baseball,[80] among other historic items. The Buckner ball went up for auction on October 15, 2011 for $1 million.[81] It failed to sell.[82][83]

The "Buckner Ball" that brought Ray Knight home with the winning run in Game 6 of the '86 World Series was on display at the Mets Hall of Fame & Museum at Citi Field during the 2010 baseball season.[84] Many pieces in the collection were featured in baseball retrospectives at the Queens Museum of Art and The Bronx Museum of the Arts in 2004.[85]

Swirsky sold his 250 piece collection on May 3, 2012 through Heritage Auctions for close to $1.5 million. The ball that went through Buckner's legs sold for $418,250.[86][87]

Books and publications[edit]

Books[edit]

He wrote three best-selling books collecting letters between himself and Major League Baseball players and other fans and a book about self-managing anxiety.[88][89]

  • Swirsky, Seth, ed. (1996). Baseball letters : a fan's correspondence with his heroes. New York: Kodansha International. ISBN 978-1568361529. 
  • Swirsky, Seth, ed. (1999). Every pitcher tells a story : letters gathered by a devoted baseball fan (1st ed.). New York: Times Books. ISBN 978-0812930559. 
  • Swirsky, Seth, ed. (2003). Something to write home about : great baseball memories in letters to a fan (1st ed.). New York: Crown Publishers. ISBN 978-0609608944. 
  • Swirsky, Seth (2017). 21 Ways to a Happier Depression: A Creative Guide to Getting Unstuck from Anxiety, Setbacks, and Stress. Sourcebooks. ISBN 9781492648130. 
  • Chris, Epting; Foreward by Swirsky, Seth (2010). Hello, it's me : dispatches from a pop culture junkie. Santa Monica: Santa Monica Press. ISBN 978-1595800534. 

Publications[edit]

Swirsky is a political and cultural writer, having written for The Huffington Post,[90] The National Review,[91] Real Clear Politics,[92] and Political Mavens.[93]

Film[edit]

Swirsky (l.) with Ringo Starr in February 2011

Beatles Stories[edit]

Swirsky's full-length documentary, Beatles Stories, consists of filmed interviews that Swirsky conducted with people who had a personal story or recollection about themselves and one or all of The Beatles.[94][95] In the documentary, John Lennon's former personal assistant, Fred Seaman said that, by the time of his death, Lennon would have voted for Ronald Reagan in the 1980 elections and that, by the end of his life, he was embarrassed by the naivete of his song "Imagine".[96][97]

It was chosen as an Official Selection at the 2011 European Independent Film Festival[98]—considered the Sundance of Europe[99][100]—and had its world premiere in Paris, France on April 3, 2011.[101][102] It made its East Coast premiere at The Gold Coast International Film Festival on June 2, 2011.[103] It was also an Official Selection at The 2011 Newport Beach International Film Festival, where it made its North American premiere on April 29, 2011.[104][105]

On November 29, 2012, Swirsky was interviewed onstage at The Grammy Museum in Los Angeles after a sold out special screening of Beatles Stories.[106]

The Last Giant[edit]

Swirsky's short film The Last Giant (which consisted of on-camera reminiscences of 1930s major league baseball All-Star Harry "The Horse" Danning) was a 2007 Official Selection in both the (Washington) D.C. International Film Festival (DCIFF) and the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum's 2nd Annual Film Festival.[107]

Personal[edit]

Swirsky has three children: Julian, Luke, and Daisy.[108]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Seth Swirsky. "My Story". Seth.com, the Website of Seth Swirsky, Manic Expressive. 
  2. ^ Dartmouth (April 1, 2009). "Class of 1982 - Honor Roll 2008". Retrieved August 25, 2011. 
  3. ^ "Meet Sports Memorabilia Collector, Songwriter and Author Seth Swirsky". 
  4. ^ a b Song Facts. "Tell It To My Heart by Taylor Dayne". Retrieved August 25, 2011. 
  5. ^ a b Billboard charts. "Taylor Dayne, Artist Chart History". 
  6. ^ Chart States. "Tell It To My Heart by Kelly Llorenna". Retrieved August 25, 2011. 
  7. ^ "ASCAP Award". 
  8. ^ Swiss DJ Charts - House/Dance. "Die Angesagtesten Schweizer Club-Sounds". 
  9. ^ "Cheetos TV Commercial, 'Nailed It' Song by Taylor Dayne". 
  10. ^ "Prove Your Love by Taylor Dayne". 
  11. ^ "Song artist 462 - Taylor Dayne". 
  12. ^ "TOO MANY HANDS' CONFINE AL GREEN". 
  13. ^ "Love is a Beautiful Thing by Al Green". 
  14. ^ "New Campaigns". 
  15. ^ a b c d e "Seth Swirsky - Discography". 
  16. ^ "Michael McDonald Songs". 
  17. ^ "Olivia Newton-John - Not Gonna Be The One". 
  18. ^ "Olivia Newton-John - Back to Basics - The Essential Collection 1971-1992". Archived from the original on 2011-12-29. 
  19. ^ "Back to basics the essential collection". 
  20. ^ "Homeboy". Archived from the original on 2010-05-25. 
  21. ^ a b c "Making Every Moment Count". 
  22. ^ "Who's Getting Serious". [permanent dead link]
  23. ^ "La Bible de la Westcoast Music". 
  24. ^ "Where Are The Children". 
  25. ^ "Each Day I Call Her Name - Jim Ellison". 
  26. ^ "Hit songwriter and best-selling baseball author Seth Swirsky steps up to the plate with debut release 'Instant Pleasure' on October 1st @ Top40-Charts.com - Songs & Videos from 49 Top 20 & Top 40 Music Charts from 30 Countries". Webcache.googleusercontent.com. Archived from the original on 2005-11-12. Retrieved 2014-06-30. 
  27. ^ "Seth Swirsky". 
  28. ^ "Meet Sports Memorabilia Collector, Songwriter and Author Seth Swirsky". 
  29. ^ "Mariah Carey Accused of Plagiarism". Fox News. October 21, 2011. Archived from the original on August 1, 2011. 
  30. ^ Michael T. Mervis and Robyn S. Crosson. "9th Circuit's Acceptance of 'Melodic Reduction' May Change Music Infringement Litigation". 
  31. ^ Columbia Law School Arthur W. Diamond Law Library Music Plagiarism Project (2002). "Swirsky v. Carey, 376 F. 3d 841 (9th Cir. 2004)". Columbia Center for New Media Teaching and Learning. 
  32. ^ "Swirsky v. Carey". 
  33. ^ "Seth Swirsky, et al v. Mariah Carey, et al". Archived from the original on 2012-04-02. 
  34. ^ "December 2010 Issue Music Connection Magazine". Archived from the original on 2011-01-03. 
  35. ^ LA Music Awards. "2005 Nominees". Archived from the original on 2010-12-20. 
  36. ^ Ezra Dulis. "'Watercolor Day' Review: Everything a Classic Pop Album Should Be". 
  37. ^ "Seth Swirsky wins Best Pop Song". 
  38. ^ "The Hollywood Music in Media Awards Winners". 
  39. ^ "Singer/Songwriter Seth Swirsky Wins Best Pop Song At The Hollywood Music In Media Awards For His Hit Watercolor Day". Archived from the original on 2011-07-13. 
  40. ^ John M. Borack. "Seth Swirsky's Watercolor Day is the first great power pop record of 2010". 
  41. ^ John M. Borack. "John M. Borack's top 20 CDs of 2010". 
  42. ^ "Album Preview ∞ Seth Swirsky: Watercolor Day". 
  43. ^ Matt Whitby. "Audities: Best of 2010 – The Results". Archived from the original on 2011-01-20. 
  44. ^ "Rich Rossi gives PPO his Top 10". 
  45. ^ "The Top Ten Power Pop albums for 2010". 
  46. ^ "Top 25 Power Pop Releases of 2010". 
  47. ^ Tim Cain. "Despite changing taste, albums still offer something new and different". 
  48. ^ Bob Brainen. "Bob Brainen's 2010 Favorites". 
  49. ^ DJ Sparky Shockpop. ""ShockPop"'s 20+10 Favorite Independent Artist Releases of 2010". 
  50. ^ Music Industry News Network. "Award-Winning Pop Singer/Songwriter Seth Swirsky Releases His Long-Awaited Third Solo Album, Circles and Squares". 
  51. ^ Marc Myers. "Album of note". 
  52. ^ John Borack. "Review: Seth Swirsky's "Circles and Squares"". 
  53. ^ KCRW. "Chris Muckley guest hosts". 
  54. ^ "KCRW DJ Picks". 
  55. ^ Rob Ross. "ALBUM REVIEW: SETH SWIRSKY, "Circles And Squares"". 
  56. ^ Hollywood Music and Movie Awards. "2016 September Music Genre Nominees". 
  57. ^ "Hollywood Music and Movie Awards Homepage". 
  58. ^ "Bash On Pop – David Bash's "Best Of" 2016 Lists". 
  59. ^ "Top 25 Power Pop Releases of 2016". 
  60. ^ "Best Power Pop Albums of 2016". 
  61. ^ Absolute Powerpop. "The Absolute Powerpop Top 100 Albums of 2016, #1-50". 
  62. ^ "TOP 50 ALBUMS/EPs 2016". 
  63. ^ "Top 20 Albums of 2016". 
  64. ^ Kevin Bronson (August 7, 2007). "Ears Wide Open: The Red Button pops off". Los Angeles Times. 
  65. ^ CDBaby.com. "The Red Button She's About to Cross My Mind". 
  66. ^ "The Absolute Powerpop Top 100 125 Discs of 2007, #1-5". 
  67. ^ "The Red Button is back : Just in Time For Summer". Archived from the original on 2011-06-14. 
  68. ^ "David Bash's Top 125 Albums of 2007". 
  69. ^ Popbang. "Top 20 Tracks of 2007". 
  70. ^ The Red Button. "Official The Red Button Website". 
  71. ^ Matt Whitby. "Auditiest – Best of 2011 – The Results". Archived from the original on 2012-03-10. 
  72. ^ Steven Van Zandt. "Show 484". 
  73. ^ Hollywood Music in Media. "2011 Music Genre Nominees". Archived from the original on March 12, 2012. Retrieved November 7, 2011. 
  74. ^ Music Connection. "Music Connection's 2011 Hot 100 Unsigned Artist list - Page 41". 
  75. ^ a b "Now It's All This!". 
  76. ^ "Peter Noone Joins Forces With The Red Button for 'Ooh Girl': Video Premiere". 
  77. ^ Christian Toto. "BH Interview: Seth Swirsky Sings Praises of Lite Rock, Shannon". 
  78. ^ Net Shrine (October 15, 2000). "Interview with Seth Swirsky". NetShrine.com - a Celebration of Baseball. 
  79. ^ Darren Rovell (October 15, 2008). "The Cork That Never Popped". CNBC. 
  80. ^ "Seth Swirsky's Historic Baseball Collection". 
  81. ^ Ben Walker. "Buckner ball in play, up for auction this month". 
  82. ^ Eben Novy-Williams (October 26, 2011). "Buckner Ball Through Legs Gets Redemptive Auction as 1986 Winners Struggle". Bloomberg. 
  83. ^ Tom Van Riper. "Any Takers For Buckner Ball? Not for $1 Million". Forbes. Retrieved November 7, 2011. 
  84. ^ "Mets Hall of Fame & Museum Opens this Monday, April 5, Opening Day at Citi Field". April 1, 2010. 
  85. ^ "The Show to be Named Later". 
  86. ^ "Buckner ball sells for $418,250". [permanent dead link]
  87. ^ "Bill Buckner ball sells for $418,250". 
  88. ^ Sheidlower, Noah (18 September 2017). "A Happier Depression". Great Neck Record. 
  89. ^ Douglas Martin (September 29, 1996). "Babe Ruth Didn't Call That Homer, And Other Revisions of the Canon". The New York Times Week in Review. 
  90. ^ "Seth Swirsky". 
  91. ^ "Seth Swirsky". 
  92. ^ "Seth Swirsky". 
  93. ^ "Seth Swirsky". 
  94. ^ Wall Street Journal. "Seth Swirsky: Talking About Meeting the Beatles". Retrieved October 2, 2012. 
  95. ^ Marc Myers. "'Meet the Beatles,' Literally". Wall Street Journal. Retrieved October 2, 2012. 
  96. ^ TODAY staff and wire. "Was John Lennon a closet conservative?". 
  97. ^ Tony Pierce. "John Lennon was a closet Reagan Republican claims former assistant". Los Angeles Times. 
  98. ^ The European Independent Film Festival. "Official Website". 
  99. ^ Elizabeth W Rubel. "European Independent Film Festival". 
  100. ^ ""BROKEN CLOUDS" by Yuri Alves competing in "SUNDANCE OF EUROPE"". 
  101. ^ The European Independent Film Festival. "Official Selection 2011". 
  102. ^ Film Annex. "Beatles Stories". Archived from the original on 2013-01-23. 
  103. ^ The Gold Coast International Film Festival. "2011 Film Guide". Archived from the original on 2012-03-21. 
  104. ^ Newport Beach Film Festival. "Newport Beach Film Festival 2011". Archived from the original on 2011-03-01. 
  105. ^ Hollywood Outbreak. ""beatles stories" doc makes north american debut". 
  106. ^ "Reel to Reel: Beatles Stories". 
  107. ^ "Swirsky comes home with Beatles film". 
  108. ^ "Gertrude Finkle". 

External links[edit]