Siedah Garrett is letting the world know what industry insiders have known for too long. She’s the best known unknown! Just ask Michael Jackson. When he was looking for songs for his smash LP, Bad, his producer, Quincy Jones, played him a song that Garrett had co-written with songwriter/producer, Glen Ballard. That song was “Man In The Mirror”. Jackson loved the song, and was also so impressed with the voice of the girl singing the demo, he decided that he had to meet her. When Jackson and Garrett met, they quickly hit it off. “Man In The Mirror” went on to become the third 1 single from the multi-platinum BAD album, and one of Jackson’s all-time favorite songs. But aside from singing background vocals on “Man In The Mirror,” Jackson decided Garrett was the natural choice for the duet, “I Just Can’t Stop Loving You,” which was to be the album’s first single. Not surprisingly, the result was a 1 smash, which sold over a million copies worldwide. Garrett toured with Jackson for almost two years, singing their duet as well as background vocals for his Dangerous World Tour. Garrett has also had the privilege co-written a song with Michael, entitled “Keep The Faith”, which is featured on the Dangerous CD.
Born and raised in Los Angeles, in the 70’s, it was apparent early on that Garrett was blessed with many talents. Her early influences were Chaka Kahn, Stevie Wonder and of course, The Jackson Five. Since Garrett blew on to the scene via an open audition for Quincy Jones, she has done a multitude of background vocal session work with everyone from Johnny Mathis to Donna Summer, Wayne Newton to Quincy Jones, The Pointer Sisters to The Starship, Kenny Loggins to RuPaul, Al Jarreau to Al B. Sure!. Garrett was responsible for contracting background vocal sessions for such prestigious pop, dance and urban contemporary artists such as Madonna, on the multi-platinum True Blue album, The Commodores, on the smash LP, Nightshift, and many others. Songs co-penned by Garrett have turned up on such hit album projects such as Paula Abdul’s Forever Your Girl, and Quincy Jones’ Back On The Block.
Garrett has enjoyed tremendous success as a songwriter, co-penning songs for everyone from the King of Pop, to the Queen of Soul, and many, many artists in between, but she’s also had some amazing successes as a recording artist in her own right. Garrett first 1 solo single, “Do You Want It Right Now”, a 1 dance hit and club anthem exploded onto the national scene. Garrett also sang the demo for a song that was meant to be a duet featuring Chaka Kahn and Dennis Edwards, but producer, Dennis Lambert thought that the vocal blend between Garrett and Edwards was magical. The result was the 1 smash R&B classic, “Don’t Look Any Further.”
Garrett was commissioned to write songs with and for, “The Brand New Heavies”, a popular British neo-soul band. After having co-written more than half of their latest CD, entitled Shelter, Garrett was invited to become a full member of the band, living and working in London, replacing departed lead singer, N’Dea Davenport. The Shelter album went gold in the United Kingdom, and has sold over half a million CDs worldwide.
Garrett was featured on Quincy Jones’ latest release entitled “From Q, With Love. The first single from this CD, is a duet featuring Garrett and El Debarge, entitled “I’m Yours”. Garrett is also the featured vocalist on the newest release from saxophonist, Richard Elliott, entitled “This Could Be Real”, also co-penned by Garrett. Garrett has also co-written and co-produced songs for Vanessa L. Williams and Tatianna Ali on the Grammy Award Winning soundtrack from the full feature film, “The Adventures of Elmo In Grouchland”.
And how many people do you know that have sung for The Pope? Well Garrett, along with a small group of American singers, combined with singers from Florence and Rome, calling themselves “The Millennium Choir”, converged on the ancient city to perform for Pope John Paul in Vatican City on Christmas Day 1999. It was a performance of a lifetime.
On July 4th, 2000, Garrett was in Paris to participate in a history making performance with mentor, Quincy Jones along with the entire French National Orchestra. The performance was in honor of would have been Duke Ellington’s 100th birthday. The entire event was filmed by “Bravo”, as part of a biography piece on Jones. Performing along with Garrett was singer/songwriter Phil Collins, Duke Ellington’s blues crooner Milt Grayson, harmonica aficionado Toots Tillman, songwriter Michele LeGrand, and French national treasure, Henry Salvadore.
In the fall of 2007, Garrett, along with Quincy Jones, was invited by the Chinese government to co-write the theme song for the opening ceremony of the Special Olympics, held in Shanghai, China.
Most recently, Garrett was nominated for an Oscar, as well as a Grammy for having co-penned, “Love You, I Do,” sung by Oscar winning actress, Jennifer Hudson, in the hit film, “Dreamgirls”.
The stage is set and, after her groundbreaking collaborations and contributions on history making albums, Garrett has proven herself a force to be reckoned with. The most rare of all offerings, she’s an enormous talent that encompasses her gift as an incredible vocalist and her true craft as a successful songwriter. Siedah Garrett, the quintessential recording artist/singer/songwriter, is a true Renaissance woman.