Adult Contemporary Music in Japan

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David Roberts

David Roberts 2008
Singer-songwriter, David Scott Roberts, born in Boston on September 13, 1958 and raised in Toronto, Canada, has been writing and recording songs for over 25 years. As a writer for Warner/Chappell Music over 15 of those years, David has had many of his songs recorded by such artists as Diana Ross, Starship, Bad English, Jimmy Barnes, John Waite, House of Lords, Ramsey Lewis and Nancy Wilson to name a few, and collaborated with many great writers, such as Dianne Warren, Jonathan Cain, Gerry Goffin, Albert Hammond, John Waite, Jimmy Barnes, Greg Giuffria, Alanis Morrisette, etc. A demo submitted to a radio station talent search changed his fate when he was around 20 years old. The prize was to record 3 more songs in a high quality studio, and the finished tape ultimately got into the hands of A&R at WEA Canada. As a result, David got a deal and brought him to Los Angeles to record his first album "All Dressed Up" and released on Elektra Records in 1982. David recorded this album at LA's famous Sunset Sound and was produced by Greg Mathieson and Executive Produced by Jay Graydon. It featured all-star musicians including Jeff Pocaro, Steve Lukather, Mike Pocaro, David Foster, and Bill Champlin.
David Roberts with StarshipAfter "All Dressed Up," David fell into a groove as a song-writer. Over the last 20 years David has written and produced dozens of commercials as well as music for television and the Olympics. This was because everytime David began to put things together for his own next record, he would hear from the publisher that an artist wanted to record a key song I was working on; Starship recorded "Before I Go" for their multi million selling "Knee Deep in the Hoopla". Since then, David began to write with more recording artists that had record deals. One of his works was a number one song in Australia "Drivin' Wheels" recorded by Jimmy Barnes. The artists who recorded David's songs are Bad English, Diana Ross, House of Lords ( Greg Giuffria's band ) to name a few others. I wrote commercials for Coke, Budweiser etc. Songs for the Olympics. Thus, we could never have his 2nd solo album during 80's. In 1993, a song "Run Back" co-written by Randy Goodrum was covered by Japanese rock group named Splash as the ending theme "Identity" for Japanese television show "Shinkansen Monogatari 93 Natsu (Bullet-train Stories 93 Summer)". Next year, David won the prize of the song contest for opening theme of Kansai International Airport Japan with the song titled "Sora-Ni-Mukatte (Reach Out To The Sky)". David was flown to Osaka for the opening ceremony where it was announced that my song came in second. Around then, It seemed that David prepared more than 10 brand-new demos. In spite of our expectation, we could not have his 2nd solo album again in 1990's. In 2003, David Roberts is back with Tommy Denander, one of the good Swedish guitarists / songwriters. Now, we can listen to David's unchanged voice on Frédéric Slama's project album "AOR / Dreaming of L.A".In 2008, David is back with his second effort titled "Better Late Than Never." This time around David again worked with Greg Mathieson in L.A. and Fred Mollin in Nashville.




"All Dressed Up..." was released in 1982. When When David first got his recording contract with WEA Canada, the deal was based on 3
songs David had submitted to the record company. Therefore, David spent about a year writing, tweaking and demo-ing songs for the record while at the same time shopping for a producer. It was far from an over-night thing. David Roberts says, "I remember getting the record deal and putting tremendous pressure on my-self trying to write the best songs I had in me at the time. Sometimes things would just flow and I would look back on a song and wonder where it came from. It's magical when that happens. 'Wrong Side Of The Tracks' was a song I'd written late at night where the story just unraveled about a young man who doesn't like where his life is headed so he decides to sneak away and change his destiny when everyone is asleep. This song was fun to record because it was written on a keyboard without a proper demo. I could only imagine what it would sound like. " Finally, David wrote all songs on the album including the above-mentioned "Wrong Side Of The Tracks" later covered by Ramsey Lewis, and "Anywhere You Run To" later covered by Diana Ross. Once David hooked up with Greg Mathieson and Jay Graydon, they worked on the arrangements for several weeks tightening things up. Thus, "All Dressed Up..." was released in 1982. The sound of this album is really the one of Toto's because Porcaro brothers and Steve Lukather supported on all tracks of this album. Thus, this album became one of the legendary and evergreen albums for WestCoast / AOR music lovers.

David Roberts / All Dressed Up
    • Label : Warner Music, Canada (1st reissue CD: Warner Music Japan <WMC5-434>, 2nd reissued CD: Vivid Sound Corporation, Japan <VSCD-3343(Limited Paper Sleeve Edition)><VSCD-3369>) (European reissue : Avenue Of Allies, Geramany <11 09 0027>)
    • Release Year: 1982 (2nd reissue: July 26, 2006/July 23, 2008) (European reissue: April 29, 2011)
    • Producer: Greg Mathieson
    • Executive Producer: Jay Graydon
    • Musicians:
      • Guitars: Steve Lukather, Jay Graydon
      • Drums: Jeff Porcaro
      • Bass: Mike Porcaro
      • Keyboards: Greg Mathieson, Michael Boddicker, David Foster
      • Sax: Gary Herbig
      • Percussion: Paulinho Da Costa
      • Background Vocals: Bill Champlin, Tom Kelly, Jim Hass, Joe Chemay, John Joyce
      • Strings Arrangement: Jeremy Lubbock, Jerry Hey
      • Convert Master: Jerry Vinci
  • Tracks:
    1. All In The Name Of Love
    2. Too Good to Last
    3. Someone Like You
    4. Boys Of Autumn
    5. She's Still Mine (That's My Girl)
    6. Wrong Side Of The Tracks
    7. Midnight Rendezvous
    8. Anywhere You Run To
    9. Never Gonna Let You Go
    10. Another World




The reissued masterpiece"All Dressed Up" sells well more than the label expected. At the same time, David started to feel very confident that it would be the time to restart his own musical career as an artist to know the fact that many AOR / West Coast fans has been expecting his brand-new album. The first recording session of this album was done in the Summer of 2007 in Los Angels with Greg Mathieson as the producer, who was the one producing "All Dressed Up" in 1982! David recorded 5 songs including self-cover version of "Before I Go" originally recorded by STARSHIP for their smash hit album "Knees In The Hoopla" (1986) and a song titled "Stay With Me", unreleased material recorded by John Waite (ex Babys) in early 90's. The rest half of the album was done in Nashville in March 2008, with Fred Mollin as the producer, best-known for America's 1980's album "Alibi" and/or Jimmy Webb's 1996 album "Ten Easy Pieces".

David Roberts / Better Late Than Never
    • Label: Vivid Sound Corp., Japan (VSCD-3364), Europe: Avenue Of Allies, Geramany (11 09 0028)
    • Release Date: July 23, 2008 (Europe: April 29, 2011)
    • Producers: Greg Mathieson, Fred Mollin
    • David Roberts : Lead and Background Vocals
    • Musicians:
      • Guitars: Michael Landau, Brent Mason, J.T. Corenflos, Fred Mollin
      • Bass: Abraham Laboriel Sr., Larry Paxton
      • Drums: Mike Baird, Shannon Forest
      • Keyboards: Greg Mathieson, Pat Coil
      • Percussion: Luis Conte
      • Tambourine: Fred Mollin
      • Banjo: Fred Mollin
      • Background Vocals: Tim Buppert, Lyle Gudmunsen
  • Tracks:
    1. Best Thing I Never Had
    2. Better Late Than Never
    3. Someone Else's Song
    4. Before I Go
    5. Stay With Me Tonight
    6. Be Gentle With My Heart
    7. Eighth Wonder
    8. This Is How I Say Goodbye
    9. If I Woulda' Been There
    10. What I've Been Missing





"Missing Years" is a collection of his unreleased demos recorded mainly in early-mid 90's. The opening track "Run Back" co-written with Randy Goodrum, was recorded by a Japanese rock group named SPLASH in 1993 and used as the ending theme of the prime time Japanese TV drama titled "Shinkansen-Monogatari, 93 Natsu" (The Bullet Train Stories 1993 Summer) and thus this song was aired for 12 weeks. And this album contains 3 songs; "Misunderstood", "Forbidden Fruit" and "Nothing Matters Tonight" co-produced by Arnold Lanni. Probably those were written around 1989 or so when David dedicated a song "Tough Times Don't Last" with Jonathan Cain for BAD ENGLISH 's self-titled album. Arnold Lanni is known as a member of Canadian rock group SHERIFF. You might remember their 1989 US#1 hit "When I'm With You" although 6 years had passed since its 1983 original release. And the closing song "I Still Believe" featuring Stan Meisnner on guitar, is relatively hard and many Euro AOR/Melodic Rock fans would love.

The Missing Hears

    • Label: Vivid Sound Corp., Japan (VSCD-3365) (Europe: Avenue Of Allies, Geramany <11 09 0029>)
    • Release Date: October 8, 2008 (Europe: April 29, 2011)
    • Producers: Arnold Lanni, Anthony Vanderburgh and himself
    • David Roberts : Lead and Background Vocals, Keyboards, Programming
    • Musicians:
      • Guitars: Anthony Vanderburgh, Stan Meisnner
  • Tracks:
    1. Run Back
    2. Misunderstood
    3. Gone But Not Forgotten
    4. Until Your Heart's Content
    5. Run Away With Me
    6. Forbidden Fruit
    7. Nothing Matters Tonight
    8. I Love You So Much It Hurts
    9. Higher Power
    10. One Soul
    11. No Ordinary Girl
    12. Cry Me A River Tonight
    13. I Still Believe
    14. Love Waits For No-one (Bonus for 2011 European release)
    15. The Sun Will Rise Again (Bonus for Europen release)



Song Title

Artist / Album Title

Release Year / Label


On Dangerous Ground

AOR/ Dreaming of L.A

2003 / Cool Sound [Japan], AOR Heaven [Germanay]

AOR / Dreaming L.A

written by Frédéric Slama, featuring Tommy Denander, Bruce Gaitsch on guitars


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