Barry Manilow

Barry Manilow
Barry Manilow

Manilow live in 2008 at the Xcel Energy Center.
Background information
Birth name Barry Alan Pincus
Born June 17, 1943 (1943-06-17) (age 68)[1]
Brooklyn, New York, U.S.
Genres Pop, soft rock
Occupations Singer-songwriter, musician, arranger, producer, conductor
Instruments Vocals, keyboards, accordion
Years active 1973–present

Barry Manilow (born June 17, 1943[1]) is an American singer-songwriter, musician, arranger, producer, conductor, and performer, best known for such recordings as "Could It Be Magic", "Mandy", "Can't Smile Without You", and "Copacabana (At the Copa)."

In 1978, five of his albums were on the best-selling charts simultaneously, a feat equalled only by Frank Sinatra, Michael Jackson, Bruce Springsteen and Johnny Mathis. He has recorded a string of Billboard hit singles and multi-platinum albums that have resulted in his being named Radio & Records number one Adult Contemporary artist and winning three straight American Music Awards for Favorite Pop/Rock Male Artist. Between 1974 - 1979 Manilow had 10 number 1 singles, five of which were consecutive. Several well-known entertainers have given Manilow their "stamp of approval," including Sinatra, who was quoted in the 1970s regarding Manilow, "He's next." In 1988, Bob Dylan stopped Manilow at a party, hugged him and said, "Don't stop what you're doing, man. We're all inspired by you."[2]

As well as producing and arranging albums for other artists, such as Bette Midler and Dionne Warwick, Manilow has written songs for musicals, films, and commercials. From February 2005 to December 30, 2009, he was the headliner at the Las Vegas Hilton, performing hundreds of shows before ending his relationship with the hotel. From March 2010, he has headlined at the Paris Hotel in Las Vegas. He has sold more than 80 million records worldwide.[3] Politically Barry Manilow supports Ron Paul, a libertarian Republican, although he has historically supported national Democrat candidates including the Clintons and Barack Obama.[4]

The more ardent of Manilow's fans are referred to as "Fanilows."[5][6]


Early life

Manilow was born Barry Alan Pincus to Harold Pincus and Edna Manilow. His mother's family was Jewish, while his father, who was often known by the surname "Keliher," was born to a Jewish father and Irish American mother. Barry's name was changed to Barry Manilow at the time of his Bar Mitzvah, adopting his mother's maiden name.[7] Reared in the community of Williamsburg in northern Brooklyn, Barry attended nearby Eastern District High School, from which he graduated in 1961. In the same year, he enrolled in the Juilliard performing arts school, while working at CBS to pay his expenses.

At CBS, in 1964, Manilow met Bro Herrod, a director, who asked him to arrange some songs for a musical adaptation of the melodrama, The Drunkard. Instead, Manilow wrote an entire original score.[8] Herrod used his composition in the Off Broadway musical, which enjoyed an eight year run at New York's 13th Street Theatre.[9] Manilow then earned money by working as a pianist, producer, and arranger.

During this time he began to work as a commercial jingle writer,[10] an activity that continued well into the 1970s. Many of those he wrote and/or composed he would also perform, including State Farm Insurance ("Like a good neighbor, State Farm is there..."), and Band-Aid ("I am stuck on Band-Aid, 'cause Band-Aids stick on me!"), for which he adopted a surprisingly convincing child-like voice. His singing-only credits include Kentucky Fried Chicken, Pepsi, Dr Pepper, and the famed McDonald's "You Deserve a Break Today" campaign.[11] Manilow won two Clio Awards in 1976 for his work for Tab and Band-Aid.[12] These jingles were a mainstay of his concerts for years as his "V.S.M.," or "Very Strange Medley."

By 1967, Manilow was the musical director for the WCBS-TV series Callback, which premiered on January 27, 1968. He next conducted and arranged for Ed Sullivan's production company, arranging a new theme for The Late Show, while still writing, producing, and singing his radio and television jingles. At the same time, he and Jeanne Lucas performed as a duo for a two-season run at New York's Upstairs at the Downstairs club.[13]


1970s: Success

Manilow's well-known association with Bette Midler began at the Continental Baths in New York City.[14] He accompanied her and other artists on the piano from 1970 to 1971, and Midler chose him to assist with the production of her first two albums, The Divine Miss M (1972) and Bette Midler (1973), and act as her musical director on The Divine Miss M tour.[15] Manilow worked with Midler for four years, from 1971 to 1975. In 1974, Bell Records released Manilow's first album, Barry Manilow, which offered an eclectic mix of piano-driven pop and guitar-driven rock music, including a song that Manilow had composed for the 1972 war drama Parades.

Among other songs on the album were "Cloudburst", and "Could It Be Magic." The latter's music was based on Chopin's "Prelude in C Minor, Opus 28, Number 20", and provided Donna Summer with one of her major hits. (It was also covered by Take That in the 1990s, as an up-beat disco version of the song. Take That have since performed Manilow's original version in their Beautiful World Tour.) When Manilow's record company, Bell Records, merged with other labels, new entity Arista Records formed. Under the auspices of its head Clive Davis many artists were dropped. Davis was reassured by the Manilow acquisition after seeing him perform as the opening act at a Dionne Warwick concert.

The partnership began to gain traction in 1974, with the release of Manilow's second album, Barry Manilow II, originally titled Sweetwater Jones on Bell Records and given its eventual title when reissued on Arista, which contained the breakthrough number-one hit, "Mandy." Manilow had not wanted to record "Mandy," which had originally been titled "Brandy" and was co-written and originally recorded by Scott English, but the song was included at the insistence of Davis. Following the success of Barry Manilow II, the first Bell Records album release was re-mixed and re-issued on Arista Records as Barry Manilow I. When Manilow went on his first tour, he included, in his show, what he called "A V.S.M.," or "A Very Strange Medley." As previously stated, this was a sampling of some of the commercial jingles that he had written, composed, and/or sung. Beginning with Manilow's March 22, 1975, appearance on American Bandstand to promote the second album, a productive friendship with Dick Clark started.[16] Numerous appearances by Manilow on Clark's productions of Dick Clark's New Year's Rockin' Eve, singing his original seasonal favorite "It's Just Another New Year's Eve," American Bandstand anniversary shows, American Music Awards performances, and his 1985 television movie Copacabana are among their projects together.

"Mandy" was the start of a string of hit singles and albums that lasted through the rest of the 1970s to the early 1980s, coming from the multi-platinum and multi-hit albums Tryin' to Get the Feeling, This One's for You, Even Now, and One Voice. Despite being a songwriter in his own right, several of Manilow's commercial successes were with songs by others. Among hits he did not write or compose are "Mandy," "Tryin’ to Get the Feeling Again" by David Pomerantz, "Weekend in New England" (by Randy Edelman), "Looks Like We Made It" by Richard Kerr and Will Jennings, "Can't Smile Without You" and "Ready to Take a Chance Again." Ironically, another one of his hits that Manilow did not write or compose himself was his number 1 "I Write The Songs" (by Bruce Johnston of The Beach Boys). According to album liner notes, Manilow did, however, co-produce them with Ron Dante and arrange them.

Manilow's breakthrough in Britain came with the release of "Even Now," the first of many top 20 albums on that side of the Atlantic. This was quickly followed by Manilow Magic – The Best Of Barry Manilow, also known as Greatest Hits. On its initial release it was marketed with a large television campaign by the mail order label "Teledisc." In the late 1970s and early 1980s, ABC aired four variety television specials starring and executive produced by Manilow. The Barry Manilow Special with Penny Marshall as his guest premiered on March 2, 1977 to an audience of 37 million. The breakthrough special was nominated for four Emmys and won in the category of "Outstanding Comedy-Variety or Music Special."[17] The Second Barry Manilow Special in 1978, with Ray Charles as his guest, was also nominated for four Emmys.[17]

Manilow in 1979

Manilow's "Ready To Take a Chance Again" originated in the film Foul Play, which also featured "Copacabana," from his 4th studio album "Even Now." [18] "Ready To Take A Chance Again" was nominated that year for the "Best Original Song" Oscar.[19] Copacabana would later take the form of a musical television movie, starring Manilow, and three musical plays. On February 11, 1979, a concert from Manilow's sold-out dates at the Greek Theater in Los Angeles, California aired on HBO series Standing Room Only, which was the first pay-television show to pose a serious challenge to network primetime specials in the ratings.[20] From the same tour in 1978, a one-hour special from Manilow's sold out concert at the Royal Albert Hall aired in the UK.[citation needed]

On May 23, 1979, ABC aired The Third Barry Manilow Special, with John Denver as his guest. This special was nominated for two Emmy awards and won for "Outstanding Achievement in Choreography."[17] Also in 1979, Manilow produced Dionne Warwick's "comeback" album Dionne, her first to go platinum. He scored a top ten hit of his own in the fall of 1979 with the song "Ships" (written and composed by Ian Hunter, former lead singer of Mott the Hoople) from the album "One Voice."


The 1980s gave Manilow the adult contemporary chart-topping songs "The Old Songs", "Somewhere Down the Road", "Read 'Em and Weep" (a Meat Loaf cover, written by Jim Steinman) and a remake of the 1941 Jule Styne and Frank Loesser standard "I Don't Want to Walk Without You." Manilow continued having high radio airplay throughout the decade. In the UK, Manilow had five sold-out performances at Royal Albert Hall. In the United States, at Radio City Music Hall (1984) his 10-night run set a box-office sales record of nearly $2 million, making him the top draw in the then 52-year history of the venue.[21] In 1980, Manilow's One Voice special, with Dionne Warwick as his guest, was nominated for an Emmy for "Outstanding Achievement in Music Direction".[17]

Also in 1980, a concert from Manilow's sold-out shows at England's Wembley Arena was broadcast while he was on a world tour. Manilow released the self-titled Barry (1980), which was his first album to not reach the top ten in the United States, stopping at #15. The album contained "I Made It Through The Rain" (originally a minor hit for its writer, Gerard Kenny) and "Bermuda Triangle." The album If I Should Love Again followed in 1981, containing "The Old Songs," "Let's Hang On," and "Somewhere Down The Road." This was the first of his own albums that Manilow produced without Ron Dante, who had co-produced all the previous albums. Manilow's sold-out concert at the Pittsburgh Civic Arena in Pittsburgh aired nationally on Showtime, and locally on Philadelphia's now-defunct PRISM. In 1982, a concert from his sold out Royal Albert Hall show was broadcast in England. The live album and video Barry Live in Britain also came from his Royal Albert Hall shows.

On August 27, 1983, Manilow performed a landmark open air concert at Blenheim Palace in Britain. It was the first such event ever held at that venue and was attended by a conservative estimate of 40,000 people. This concert was also taped for airing on Showtime. In December 1983, Manilow was reported to have endowed the music departments at six major universities in the United States and Canada.[22] The endowments were part of a continuing endeavor by Manilow to recognize and encourage new musical talent.[23]

In 1984 Manilow released 2:00 AM Paradise Cafe, a jazz/blues collection of original barroom tunes recorded in one live take in the studio. That same year, Showtime aired a documentary of Manilow recording the album with a number of jazz legends, such as Sarah Vaughn and Mel Tormé. In 1984 and 1985, England aired two one-hour concert specials from his National Exhibition Centre (NEC) concerts. In 1985, Manilow left Arista Records for RCA Records. There he released the pop album Manilow, and began a phase of international music, as he performed songs and duets in French, Spanish, Portuguese, and Japanese, among other languages. The Manilow album was a complete about face from the Paradise Cafe album, containing a number of tracks of a modern uptempo and synthesized quality. In 1985, Japan aired a Manilow concert special where he played "Sakura" on the koto.

In his only lead acting role, he portrayed Tony Starr in a 1985 CBS film based on Copacabana, alongside Annette O'Toole as Lola Lamarr and Joseph Bologna as Rico. Manilow penned all the songs for the movie, with lyrics provided by established collaborators Bruce Sussman and Jack Feldman, and released Copacabana: The Original Motion Picture Soundtrack Album on RCA Records. In October 1986, Manilow, along with Bruce Sussman, Tom Scott, and Charlie Fox, went to Washington, D.C. for two days of meetings with legislators, including lunch with then Senator Al Gore (D-TN).[24] They were there to lobby against a copyright bill put forward by local television broadcasters that would mandate songwriter-producer source licensing of theme and incidental music on syndicated television show reruns and would disallow use of the blanket license now in effect. The songwriters said without the blanket license, artists would have to negotiate up front with producers individually, without knowing if a series would be a success. The license now pays according to a per-use formula. Manilow said that such a bill would act as a precedent for broadcasters to get rid of the blanket license entirely.[25]

The following year, McGraw-Hill published his autobiography, Sweet Life: Adventures on the Way to Paradise, which had taken him about three years to complete. While promoting the work, Manilow defended his music in a telephone interview: "I live in laid-back L.A., but in my heart, I'm an energetic New Yorker and that's what has always come out of my music. I've always been surprised when the critics said I made wimpy little ballads".[26] Manilow returned to Arista Records in 1987 with the release of Swing Street. The album, a mixture of traditional after-dark and techno jazz, contained "Brooklyn Blues," an autobiographical song for Manilow, and "Hey Mambo," an uptempo Latin style duet with Kid Creole, produced with the help of Emilio Estefan, Jr., founder of Miami Sound Machine.

In March 1988, CBS aired Manilow's Big Fun on Swing Street special. It featured songs and special guests from his Swing Street and 2:00 AM Paradise Cafe albums, including Kid Creole and the Coconuts, Phyllis Hyman, Stanley Clarke, Carmen McRae, Tom Scott, and Uncle Festive, a band within Manilow's band at the time. The special was nominated for two Emmys in technical categories, and won in the category of "Outstanding Art Direction for a Variety or Music program".[27]

In 1988, he performed "Please Don't Be Scared" and "Mandy/Could It Be Magic" at That's What Friends Are For: AIDS Concert '88, a benefit concert for the Warwick Foundation headed by Dionne Warwick and shown on Showtime a few years later. In the 1988 Walt Disney Pictures animated feature Oliver & Company, Bette Midler's character sang a new Manilow composition called "Perfect Isn't Easy." The 1989 release of Barry Manilow, which contained "Please Don't Be Scared," "Keep Each Other Warm," and "The One That Got Away," ended Manilow's streak of albums of original self-written material (he neither wrote nor arranged any of the songs except for two) and began a phase of his recording career consisting of covers and compilations.[28]

From April 18 to June 10, 1989, Manilow put on a show called Barry Manilow at the Gershwin, making 44 appearances[29] at the Gershwin Theatre (also known as the Uris Theatre), where, by coincidence, he recorded Barry Manilow Live in 1976. A best-selling 90-minute video of the same show was released the following year as Barry Manilow Live On Broadway. The Showtime one-hour special Barry Manilow SRO on Broadway consisted of edited highlights from this video. Manilow followed this set of shows with a world tour of the Broadway show.[citation needed]


In the 1990s, Manilow released a number of cover tunes. It started with the 1989 release Barry Manilow, continued with his 1990 Christmas LP Because It's Christmas. Consequent "event" albums followed including: Showstoppers, a collection of Broadway songs (1991), Singin' with the Big Bands (1994) and a late 1970s collection Summer of '78 (1996) which included the hit "I Go Crazy", formerly a hit for Paul Davis in 1978. The decade ended with Manilow recording a tribute to Frank Sinatra Manilow Sings Sinatra (1998) released months after Sinatra's death.[citation needed]

In 1990, Japan aired National Eolia Special: Barry Manilow On Broadway where he sang the title song "Eolia", which was used as a song there in a commercial for an air conditioner company of the same name, as well as other songs from his 1989–1990 Live on Broadway tour. In the early 1990s, Manilow signed on with Don Bluth to compose the songs with lyricists Jack Feldman and Bruce Sussman for three animated films. He co-wrote the Broadway-style musical scores for Thumbelina (1994) and The Pebble and the Penguin (1995). The third film, entitled Rapunzel, was shelved after the poor performance of The Pebble and the Penguin. Manilow was also to be cast as the voice of a cricket. Manilow also composed the score and wrote two songs with Bruce Sussman for Disney Sing Along Songs: Let's Go To The Circus.

On February 19, 1992, Manilow testified before the Subcommittee on Intellectual Property and Judicial Administration House Committee in support of H.R. 3204 The Audio Home Recording Act of 1991.[30] The bill was signed into law on October 28, 1992 by President George H. W. Bush. The Act, a historic compromise between the consumer electronics and music industries, became effective immediately. In 1993, PBS aired, as a fundraiser, Barry Manilow: The Best of Me, which was taped at Wembley Arena in England earlier that same year. The BBC also played a one-hour version of the same show including "The Best of Me", sung during the concert, as a bonus song or "lucky strike extra" as Manilow says, not seen in The Greatest Hits...and then some, the video release of the show; however, the song was included on the DVD of the same title, with Manilow seated in front of a black curtain, lip-syncing to the recording. Manilow branched out in another direction and, with long-time lyricist Bruce Sussman, launched Copacabana, a musical play based on previous Manilow-related adaptations. They wrote new songs and it ran for two years on the London West End, and a tour company formed.[citation needed]

In December 1996, A&E aired Barry Manilow: Live By Request, the first of his two Live By Request appearances. The broadcast was A&E's most successful music program, attracting an estimated 2.4 million viewers. The show was also simulcast on the radio. In March 1997, VH-1 aired Barry Manilow: The Summer of '78, a one-hour special of Manilow solo at the piano being interviewed and playing his greatest hits as well as songs from Summer of '78 his latest release at the time. In another collaboration between Manilow and Sussman they co-wrote the musical Harmony, which previewed October 7 to November 23, 1997 at the La Jolla Playhouse in La Jolla, California.[31] Later in 2003, Harmony was originally scheduled for a tryout run in Philadelphia before going to Broadway, but was canceled after financial difficulties. After a legal battle with Mark Schwartz, the show's producer, Manilow and Sussman in 2005 won back the rights to the musical.[32]

On October 23, 1999, NBC aired the two-hour special StarSkates Salute to Barry Manilow taped at the Mandalay Bay Hotel in Las Vegas, Nevada featuring numerous figure skaters performing to Manilow's music. Manilow also performed.


In the year 2000, Manilow had two specials, Manilow Country and Manilow Live!, taped over two consecutive days at the Tennessee Performing Arts Center in Nashville, Tennessee. On April 11, 2000, The Nashville Network (TNN) aired the two-hour Manilow Country, which featured country stars Trisha Yearwood, Neal McCoy, Deana Carter, Jo Dee Messina, Lorrie Morgan, Kevin Sharp, Lila McCann, Gillian Welch and Jaci Velasquez singing their favorite Manilow hits with a "country" twist; Manilow also performed. This "special" was TNN's first High Definition (HD) broadcast and became one of TNN's highest rated concert specials.

In June 2000, DirectTV aired the two-hour concert special Manilow Live! where Manilow had his band, a 30-piece orchestra, and a choir. This HDTV special documented the concert tour at the time with the greatest hits of his career and was also released to video. Also that year, he worked with Monica Mancini on her Concord album The Dreams of Johnny Mercer which included seven songs Manilow wrote to Mercer's lyrics. Meanwhile, Manilow's record contract with Arista Records was not renewed due to new management. He then got a contract at Concord Records, a jazz-oriented label in California, and started work on the long-anticipated concept album, Here at the Mayflower. The album was another eclectic mix of styles, almost entirely composed and produced by Manilow himself.

Barry Manilow live in 2008 during a 1960s sketch

While Manilow was at Concord Records, the Barry Manilow Scholarship was awarded for four consecutive years from 2002 to 2005 to the six highest-achieving students to reward excellence in the art and craft of lyric writing. The UCLA Extension course "Writing Lyrics That Succeed and Endure," taught by long time Manilow collaborator, Marty Panzer, and each student received three additional "master class" advanced sessions as well as a three-hour private, one-on-one session with Mr. Panzer. Scholarship recipients were selected by the instructor based on progress made within the course, lyric writing ability, and the instructor's assessment of real potential in the field of songwriting.[33] In February 2002, Manilow returned to the charts when Arista released a greatest hits album, Ultimate Manilow. On May 18, 2002, Manilow returned to CBS with Ultimate Manilow, his first special at the network since his Big Fun on Swing Street special in 1988. The special was filmed in the Kodak Theatre in Hollywood, California and was nominated for an Emmy in the category of "Outstanding Music Direction".[27]

Produced by Manilow, Bette Midler Sings the Rosemary Clooney Songbook was first released on September 30, 2003. It was the first time that Bette Midler had worked with Barry in more than twenty years. Instantly successful, the album went gold and they worked together again on a 2005 follow-up album entitled Bette Midler Sings the Peggy Lee Songbook. On December 3, 2003, A&E aired A Barry Manilow Christmas: Live by Request, his second of two concerts for the series. The two-hour special had Manilow taking requests for Christmas songs performed live with a band and an orchestra. Manilow told the audience that he was what Clay Aiken was going to look like in thirty years, thus acknowledging an ongoing comparison between the two. Also on the special were guests Cyndi Lauper, Jose Feliciano, and Bette Midler (Midler, busy preparing her own tour in LA, appeared only in a pre-taped segment).

2004 brought the release of two albums. These were, consecutively, a live album, 2 Nights Live! (BMG Strategic Marketing Group, 2004), and Scores: Songs from Copacabana & Harmony, an album of Manilow singing songs from his musicals. Scores was the last of Manilow's creative projects with the Concord label.

Barry Manilow at the keyboard, live in 2008

During his third appearance on The Oprah Winfrey Show on September 15, 2004, Winfrey announced that Manilow is one of the most requested guests of all time on her show. On the show he promoted his One Night Live! One Last Time! tour. It was around this time period where Manilow appeared for the first time on the mainstream FOX program American Idol in which his back-up singer, Debra Byrd, doubles as voice coach on the series. Manilow also appeared on Clay Aiken's TV special, A Clay Aiken Christmas.

Las Vegas Hilton executives in a press conference with Manilow on December 14, 2004 announced his signing to a long-term engagement as the house show.[34] In March 2006, Manilow's engagement was extended through 2008.[35]

Manilow returned to Arista Records under Davis for a new covers album, released January 31, 2006, called The Greatest Songs of the Fifties. Manilow said he was blown away with the idea, which Davis presented to him when he visited his Las Vegas show. "When he suggested this idea to me, I slapped my forehead and said, 'Why hasn't anyone thought of this idea?'" Manilow said.[36] It was an unexpected success, debuting at number one in the Billboard 200, marking the first time a Manilow album debuted at the top of the album chart as well as the first time a Manilow album has reached number one in 29 years. It was eventually certified Platinum in the U.S., and sold over 3 million copies worldwide.

In March 2006, PBS aired Barry Manilow: Music and Passion, a Hilton concert taped exclusively for the network's fundraising drive. Manilow was nominated for two Emmys, winning for "Outstanding Individual Performance in a Variety or Music Program". A sequel album to his best-selling fifties tribute album, The Greatest Songs of the Sixties was released on October 31, 2006 including songs such as "And I Love Her" and "Can't Help Falling in Love". It nearly repeated the success of its predecessor, debuting at #2 in the Billboard 200.

Manilow live in 2008 at the Xcel Energy Center

In January 2007, Manilow returned to his hometown of New York City for three shows at Madison Square Garden. One highlight was the showing onscreen of Manilow performing in one of his first television appearances while the "live" Manilow played along onstage.

The same year saw him playing several shows on the east coast of the United States in August. Four more took place in December, half in the NY tri-state area in Uniondale and East Rutherford, and 2 in Cleveland, Ohio and Detroit. Manilow launched another short tour in early 2008, visiting several large venues including the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul, Minnesota. A further album in the decades themed series went on release September 18, 2007. Barry Manilow: Songs from the Seventies, a PBS concert special based on the work, was taped in Manilow's home town, Brooklyn, October 2007. The show aired on PBS December 2007 and was rebroadcast over New Year 2009. He appeared on American Idol on February 3, 2009 during Hollywood Week to give advice to the contestants.

In October 2009, Manilow TV, a monthly video subscription service, launched. Once a month, Barry Manilow picks a different concert from his personal archive to show to subscribers. The first month, Episode #1, showed performances from April 20 & 21, 1996 at Wembley Arena in London.

It is confirmed as of October 7, 2009 that Manilow will be concluding his Resident show at the Hilton "Ultimate Manilow The Hits" on December 30, 2009. Manilow opened his new show "Manilow Paris Las Vegas" at the Paris Hotel & Casino at Las Vegas in March, 2010.[37]


On January 26, 2010, Manilow released his new album The Greatest Love Songs of all Time. In December 2010, Barry was nominated for a Grammy award in the category Best Traditional Pop Album for "The Greatest Love Songs of All Time." On December 11, 2010, Manilow performed at the Nobel Peace Prize Concert in Oslo, Norway. Manilow completed work on his new album, 15 Minutes, in March 2011, with his official Facebook page announcing that he had completed putting 'finishing touches' to the album on March 16, 2011.

On March 13, 2011, Barry appeared at the Olivier Awards 2011 at London's Theatre Royal, Drury Lane, singing Copacabana with the BBC Concert Orchestra and also singing with hit West End star, Kerry Ellis.

From March 2011, he is hosting "They Write the Songs", a 10-part documentary series for BBC Radio 2 in which he looks at the life and work of popular composers.[38]

In June 2011 Barry said, in an interview with the L.A Times, that his new album is influenced by Britney Spears, the album is about the pleasures and pitfalls of fame. It was influenced directly by Spear's personal struggles in late 2007.[39]

In June 2011 Manilow's "15 Minutes" debuted at number 7 on the U.S Billboard Hot 100 Album Chart.[citation needed] The first single from 15 Minutes Bring on Tomorrow entered the U.S Billboard Hot 200 Singles Chart's top 40,becoming Manilow's 47th top 40 hit.


On October 25, 1978, one hour before his scheduled debut at the Olympia Theatre he fractured his ankle.[40] Manilow was rushed to a doctor who taped the injury minutes before he stepped onstage. Manilow insisted on going on and doing his complete show, which included an intricate disco dance in the popular "Copacabana" production number.[41]

On February 4, 1982 Manilow, who was bedridden in a Paris hotel with bronchial pneumonia, had been ordered by doctors to cancel a nine-concert European tour; he had fallen ill earlier that week following completion of the month-long United Kingdom leg of the tour.[42] He was ordered to remain in bed for at least a week and would probably return to his Los Angeles home when he was able to travel, said publicist Heidi Ellen Robinson.[43]

Manilow sprained his ankle October 6, 1983 on the stage at London's Royal Festival Hall while performing at a sold-out benefit concert before the Prince and Princess of Wales, who hosted the show.[44] He underwent emergency oral surgery on December 7, 1986 at the Hospital of the Good Samaritan in Los Angeles to remove a non-cancerous cyst in his upper jaw that exploded.[45] Three days later he was released in good condition from the hospital. During the emergency, he used his friend Elizabeth Taylor's dental surgeon.[46]

On May 13, 1989 Manilow was rushed to Lenox Hill Hospital during intermission at Broadway's Gershwin Theater cancelling the second half of his show. His agent Susan Dubow said he was "feeling fine" after being forced from the Broadway stage because of an adverse reaction to medication prescribed for a stomach ailment. Dubow also added that Manilow was ready to return to the stage to complete the run of his concert show, which was then extended one week to June 3.[47]

In March 1996, Manilow had photorefractive keratectomy eye surgery on one of his eyes.[48] People Weekly, in their June 26, 2000 issue, reported that Manilow had eye surgery done by Los Angeles doctor Robert K. Maloney, but incorrectly stated it was LASIK. Manilow is quoted saying he now connects with the audience instead of "seeing a blur."[49][50]

On June 26, 1997, Manilow was diagnosed with bronchitis before a scheduled performance in Austin, Texas, his spokeswoman Susan Dubow said the following day.[51] Four other shows also had to be postponed. Manilow was back on the road that July 8 in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Dubow said this is only the second time in Manilow's career that illness forced him to postpone a performance.[52]

On May 22, 1999, Manilow was rushed to a Los Angeles hospital after suffering an adverse reaction to dental surgery. According to Manilow's spokesperson Susan Dubow, he spent two days in the hospital with an infected mouth and then was "resting comfortably at home." Since the initial operation in 1986 when Manilow had a benign tumor removed from the roof of his mouth he has had to have minor dental surgery several times over the years. It was following such a procedure that Manilow's mouth became infected, Dubow explained.[53]

On May 28, 2003, Manilow injured his nose in the middle of night when he awoke disoriented and walked into a wall when he returned to his Palm Springs home after spending two weeks in Malibu working on longtime friend Bette Midler's upcoming Rosemary Clooney tribute album. He passed out for four hours after the accident but was OK, his manager said.[54]

On July 29, 2003, Manilow had a complete upper and lower facelift, which includes the removal of drooping skin from the eyelids and the general tightening of facial skin. Manilow was photographed after the surgery with what looked like a surgical wrap under his chin while leaving a plastic surgeon's office wearing a disguise of dark glasses and a blonde wig in the streets of Beverly Hills, California in an effort to escape without recognition.[55]

On January 31, 2004, Manilow was treated for stress-related chest pains during a 24-hour stay at the Desert Regional Medical Center in Palm Springs, California. Manilow was rushed to the hospital after two days of arbitration in a lawsuit where he was fighting to win back the rights to the original stage musical Harmony from producer Mark Schwartz. Manilow was diagnosed with an atrial fibrillation. After his heart rate returned to normal, doctors permitted him to return home.[56]

On August 29, 2006, Manilow had hip surgery at a Southern California hospital. According to his press release, he tore the labrum (cartilage) in both hips. When the symptoms of extreme pain and discomfort did not go away following preliminary treatment, an MRI arthogram was performed and the labrum tears were discovered.[57] Manilow's first appearance back from the surgery took place at a concert in Atlantic City, with Barry springing forth from a golden wheelchair and holding his 2006 Emmy for Outstanding Individual Performance in a Variety or Music Program.

In media

In 1989, Manilow told Us Magazine he was hoping for a dinner invitation from his new Bel-Air neighbors, Ronald and Nancy Reagan, but complained they cramp his style of sunbathing in the nude.[58] "I thought it was pretty hot, but there is Secret Service all over the place. I always know when they are coming home because of all the helicopters. If I am out there sunbathing in the nude, I go, 'S---, the Reagans are coming home.' But, who knows, maybe they will invite me over for dinner one night."[59]

In 1989 an American tabloid claimed he was engaged to porn star Robin Byrd. On a June 22, 1989 appearance on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson, Manilow was asked by Carson about the headline story.[60] He disputed the story telling Carson he is just friends with Byrd and an innocent picture was taken and that there is no truth to them being engaged. After he met Byrd, his band gave him a videotape of Debbie Does Dallas as a present for his birthday. Manilow added to Carson that he can't watch his friend doing that.[61]

To help with the aftermath of Hurricane Hugo in 1989 which affected the Charleston, South Carolina, area, Manilow held a benefit concert November 12, 1989 at the University of South Carolina's Carolina Coliseum in Columbia, where the $10 tickets sold out in three hours, and asked concertgoers to bring canned food to be donated to residents in disaster areas.[62] Before his concert, Mayor T. Patton Adams named that day "Barry Manilow Day" and Manilow presented the Red Cross and the Salvation Army with checks of $42,500 each.[63]

On February 27, 1992, Manilow was the Master of Ceremonies for friend Elizabeth Taylor's 60th birthday bash at Disneyland in Anaheim, California and sang "I Made It Through the Rain" to Taylor who was accompanied by her eighth husband, Larry Fortensky.[64]

On January 15, 1994, 3 hours before showtime Manilow canceled a performance at an Ethnic Pride and Heritage Festival hosted at the Convention Center in Atlantic City, NJ. Benefactors included the Community Foundation of New Jersey as well as United Hospitals Medical Center Foundation and Newark Museum in Newark during the pre-inaugural activities for then New Jersey Governor-elect Christie Whitman. Manilow said in a statement that he was specifically told in writing the concert would be part of a non-partisan event.[65] Organizers approached Donald Trump who shuffled his entertainment schedule at Trump Plaza and dispatched Paul Anka to substitute for Manilow. Manilow refunded the cash advance paid, shortly afterward.[66]

Manilow, on February 8, 1994, sued Los Angeles radio station KBIG (104.3 FM), seeking $13 million in damages and $15 million in punitive damages because their ad was causing irreparable damage to his professional reputation. The ad, a 30-second spot introduced that January 31, suggested that people listen to KBIG because it does not play Manilow's music. The lawsuit was filed in Orange County Superior Court by Manilow's attorney C. Tucker Cheadle of Hastings, Clayton & Tucker in Los Angeles.[67] Two days later, KBIG/104.3 FM agreed to drop the commercial poking fun at the singer, but a lawyer representing his business interests stopped short of agreeing to withdraw a $28 million lawsuit.[68]

On February 20, 1996, just after noon, Manilow wrecked his 1993 Range Rover in a four-vehicle crash on a rain-slick interstate in Los Angeles while heading to his Bel-Air home.[69] No one was injured in the accident. Manilow, who wasn't hurt, stood on the shoulder of Interstate 5 signing autographs and posing for snapshots until an aide showed up and took him home, his spokeswoman Susan Dubow said.[70]

In October 1996, it was reported that Manilow sold his gated, 2-acre (8,100 m2) Bel-Air home of 17 years with a recording studio for close to its $2.45 million asking price and was looking to buy another residence in the Los Angeles area. He had multiple offers on the 1950s home of 3,700 square feet (340 m2) with many pathways, a long driveway and city views. It finally went to a local television producer. The nearby Hotel Bel-Air supposedly regularly provided Manilow with room service.[71]

Arizona Court of Appeals Judge Philip Espinosa, in another notable headline story, sued Manilow over the volume of a December 23, 1993 concert he attended with his wife.[72] The judge said in a lawsuit he has had a constant ringing in his ears and nearly blew his ears out. Espinosa sought unspecified damages, and the trial was set for September 23, 1997. The suit also names Manilow's production company, an Arizona concert promoter and the city of Tucson, which runs the convention center where the concert was held. In July 1997, to settle the suit it was reported that Manilow donated $5,000 to American Tinnitus Association, an ear-disorder association.[73]

In October 2001, Manilow visited Ground Zero in New York City.[74]

To help in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina in 2005, for every US dollar donated by his fans to the American Red Cross through the Manilow Fund for Health and Hope website, Manilow personally matched, and the fund itself also matched, tripling the original donation. The fund delivered $150,000 in less than 48 hours to the American Red Cross, and hoped to raise a grand total of $300,000.[75][76] On July 14, 2005 Manilow appeared on Larry King Live whereby the host alluded to the star's hushed social life. Manilow stated that he would hope fans concentrated on his music.

Manilow made headlines in June 2006 when Australian officials blasted his music between 9pm until midnight every Friday, Saturday and Sunday to deter gangs of youths from congregating in a residential area late at night.[77] On July 18, 2006, Manilow released a tongue-in-cheek statement saying that the youths might like his music.[78]



  • 1977 Grammy – I Write The Songs – Song of the Year (award went to the song's writer Bruce Johnston)
  • 1977 Emmy for Outstanding Special – Comedy, Variety or Music – The Barry Manilow Special
  • 1977 Special Tony AwardBarry Manilow on Broadway
  • 1978 American Music Awards – Best Pop/Rock Male Artist
  • 1979 Grammy – Copacabana Best Pop Male Vocal Performance
  • 1979 American Music Awards – Best Pop/Rock Male Artist
  • 1980 American Music Awards – Best Pop/Rock Male Artist
  • 2002 Songwriter's Hall of Fame
  • 2006 Emmy for Outstanding Individual Performance in a Variety or Music Program – Barry Manilow: Music And Passion
  • 2007 RIAA – Plaque commemorating worldwide record sales of 75 million
  • 2009 Clio Awards Honorary award for prior work with commercial jingles
  •  ? Kentucky Colonel [79]
  • 2009 Inducted into the Hit Parade Hall of Fame

Selected TV and movie appearances

Barry Manilow at the premiere of The Rose (starring Bette Midler), November 7, 1979
  • Donny & Marie in 1977.
  • ABC special The Stars Salute Israel At 30 on May 8, 1978.
  • May 8, 1982, Goldie & Kids a special where he acted in skits and sang "One Voice" and "I Am Your Child" with hostess Goldie Hawn.
  • In 1985 Barry wrote and starred in the Television movie Copacabana (musical) which was inspired by his 1978 song Copacabana.
  • On September 17, 1987 he appeared in the star-studded CBS special We The People 200: The Constitutional Gala taped at the Philadelphia Civic Center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania to debut his song "Let Freedom Ring" where President Ronald Reagan was in attendance.
  • On May 17, 1993, Manilow made a guest appearance on the CBS show Murphy Brown. On the show, Candice Bergen's title character had frequently made reference to her hatred of Manilow's music, but after she became a mother, Manilow appeared to sing her a sweet version of his tune "I Am Your Child," winning her over with the song about a parent's bond with a child. Later that year he appeared in England on Surprise! Surprise! with Cilla Black where he performed the new single he had recorded with Cilla of "You'll Never Walk Alone".[80]
  • Guest appearance in a 2001 episode of Ally McBeal. He played both a hallucination of Ally's and himself on stage at the end of the show.
  • Played himself in a cameo in the 2002 dark comedy Unconditional Love starring Kathy Bates and Rupert Everett where "Can't Smile Without You" also played a key role in the plot.
  • On December 11, 2003, Manilow appeared on the NBC show Will & Grace as himself backstage between tour stops. The name of the episode is

"Fanilow" as in a fan of Manilow.

  • On April 20, 2004 – April 21, 2004 Manilow reunited with Debra Byrd his former backup singer who is now the vocal coach at American Idol when he appeared as a guest judge and worked with the top seven finalists for the popular FOX variety prize show where the season three contestants sang his songs as the theme for the week.
  • On December 8, 2004, he was a guest on the NBC special A Clay Aiken Christmas, hosted by the former Idol runner-up.
  • On March 21, 2006 – March 22, 2006 Manilow returned to American Idol in season five when 1950s music was the theme. He again helped the top eleven finalists to fine tune their performances and again sang on the results show.
  • In November 2006, he appeared on Logo's reality show Jacob and Joshua: Nemesis Rising as himself in Las Vegas for a recording session with the twins.
  • On November 23, 2006, Manilow appeared live on a float in the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, and performed the song "What the World Needs Now" on the television broadcast of the parade.
  • On December 2, 2006, Manilow was the celebrity guest and theme for the week on series three of The X Factor where he assisted the top four acts with their performances.[81]
  • On December 12, 2006, appeared live at the 2006 Royal Variety Performance and performed a selection from his latest album.
  • The Tonight Show with Jay Leno on October 31, 2007 on November 17, 2008 and on July 12, 2011.
  • He guest starred on Family Guy in "Back to the Woods" on February 17, 2008
  • On 4 December 2008 he was the main guest on UK's The Graham Norton Show.
  • He guest starred on Strictly Come Dancing on December 7, 2008
  • Barry narrated and wrote original music for the Ocean Spray Christmas special "Cranberry Christmas".
  • He appeared as a guest on Friday Night with Jonathan Ross (UK) on September 11, 2009.
  • On October 2, 2009 he appeared on BBC Radio 4's Desert Island Discs.
  • He appeared as a guest on The Jay Leno Show (US) on December 10, 2009.
  • He appeared as a guest on The Tonight Show with Conan O'Brien (US) on January 21, 2010. He mentioned that, before he became famous, he wrote advertising jingles, including two well-known jingles for Band-Aid and State Farm. Also, he commented on his diet of "forgetting to eat".
  • On February 6, 2010, he was a guest on The Jimmy Kimmel Show where Jimmy showed a photo of him in the 1970s and discussed his new album.
  • On December 11, 2010 he ended the Nobel Peace Prize concert in Oslo, Norway singing four of his most known and popular songs. The Nobel Peace Prize was awarded to the Chinese dissident Liu Xiaobo.
  • On June 15, 2011 he appeared on "Good Morning America" performing his new album, "Fifteen Minutes".
  • On June 23, 2011 he appeared on CNN's Piers Morgan Tonight.
  • On June 24, 2011 he appeared on the UK's Paul O'Grady Live.
  • On October 28, 2011 he was the star of the UK's show An Audience With... Barry Manilow.

Notes and references

  1. ^ a b Barry Manilow at
  2. ^ Patricia Butler, Barry Manilow, Omnibus Press, 2002. p. 223.
  3. ^ "Barry Manilow |". Retrieved 2011-09-19. 
  4. ^ USA Today September 15, 2011 Barry Manilow is a Ron Paul Fan
  5. ^ Floridian: Face the music, Fanilows
  6. ^ Barry's barmy army: Meet the most fearsome fan club of all... the Fanilows | Mail Online
  7. ^ "Megan Smolenyak: Happy St. Patrick's Day, Barry Manilow!". Retrieved 2010-12-03. 
  8. ^ "The Drunkard" (Press release). Music Theatre International. Retrieved 2007-03-01.  Archived March 13, 2008 at the Wayback Machine
  9. ^ "A spirited musical: Clap, hiss and sing along as MAC stages historical temperance play scored by a young Barry Manilow" (Press release). July 26, 2006. Retrieved 2007-03-01. 
  10. ^ BarryNet – His Music – Commercial Jingles, Barry Manilow - BarryNet - His Music - Commercial Jingles. Retrieved December 5, 2006.
  11. ^ Manilow, Barry (1975). "Jingle Letter". Scooter Talk. Retrieved January 15, 2007. 
  12. ^ BarryNet – The Man – Honors and Awards, Barry Manilow - BarryNet - The Man - Honors and Awards. Retrieved December 5, 2006.
  13. ^ Barry Manilow Keeps Flying High Critics? 'They Really Can't Hurt Me', Tulsa World, January 21, 1983
  14. ^ Barry Manilow[dead link]
  15. ^ "Bette Midler: The Divine Miss M Tour (1972–73)". Retrieved 2010-12-03. 
  16. ^ American Bandstand with Barry Manilow/Minnie Riperton on March 22, 1975. Retrieved December 18, 2006.
  17. ^ a b c d Academy of Television Arts & Sciences, [1]. Retrieved November 8, 2006.
  18. ^ BarryNet – The Man – At The Movies, Barry Manilow - BarryNet - The Man - At The Movies. Retrieved November 2, 2006.
  19. ^ The Official Academy Awards Database, Academy Awards Database - AMPAS. Retrieved November 18, 2006.
  20. ^ HBO Guide, February 1979
  21. ^ People, The Dallas Morning News, November 3, 1984
  22. ^ Newsmakers, The Philadelphia Inquirer, December 1, 1983
  23. ^ Peopletalk, The Valley Independent, December 1, 1983
  24. ^ The longest shot; measuring Al Gore Jr. for the White House – Albert Gore Jr, Washington Monthly, November 1986
  25. ^ Manilow: Bill Would Spell Disaster – Star Reacts To Source Licensing Moves, Billboard, October 11, 1986
  26. ^ Barry Manilow swings on album – and at critics, Chicago Sun-Times, November 29, 1987
  27. ^ a b Academy of Television Arts & Sciences, [2]. Retrieved November 9, 2006.
  28. ^ "BARRY MANILOW (1989)". Retrieved 2010-12-03. 
  29. ^ The Broadway League. "Internet Broadway Database". Retrieved 2010-12-03. 
  30. ^ House Testimony for Home Recording Act, February 19, 1992
  31. ^ La Jolla Playhouse HARMONY – 1997, accessed December 20, 2006 Archived October 26, 2006 at the Wayback Machine
  32. ^ DIS-'HARMONY', New York Post, July 22, 2005
  33. ^ Lyricists Compete for Barry Manilow Scholarship at UCLA Extension, Broadcast Music, Inc (BMI)
  34. ^ Las Vegas Hilton Signs Barry Manilow to Long-Term Engagement, PRNewswire, December 14, 2004
  35. ^ "Las Vegas Hilton and Barry Manilow celebrate chart success by announcing extension of Manilow's successful long-term engagement; superstar receives "Key" to the Hilton, his exclusive home through 2008", Las Vegas Hilton Press Room, March 27, 2006 Archived June 29, 2011 at the Wayback Machine
  36. ^ Barry Manilow Croons For ET, Entertainment Tonight, January 27, 2006 Archived October 13, 2007 at the Wayback Machine
  37. ^ "Manilow Paris Las Vegas: The Show". Retrieved January 7, 2010.
  38. ^ 22:00 (2011-03-15). "Radio 2 Programmes - They Write the Songs, George Gershwin". BBC. Retrieved 2011-09-19. 
  39. ^ "New Manilow album inspired by Britney Spears – The Marquee Blog". CNN. 
  40. ^ Pop Notes, Washington Post, November 3, 1978 Archived September 27, 2008 at the Wayback Machine
  41. ^ Paris Report, Teen Stars Today, February 1979
  42. ^ PNEUMONIA ENDS MANILOW'S EUROPEAN TOUR, Associated Press, February 8, 1982
  43. ^ People in the News, The Capital, February 5, 1982
  44. ^ People in the news, The Capital, October 8, 1983
  45. ^ JERRY LEE LEWIS CUTS SHORT TREATMENT, The Philadelphia Inquirer, December 12, 1986[not in citation given]
  46. ^ "THE DAY I THOUGHT I HAD CANCER", Woman Magazine (UK), November 14, 1987
  48. ^ BEYOND GLASSES!, The Consumer's Guide To Laser Vision Correction, 1996
  49. ^ The Eyes Have It, People Weekly, June 26, 2000
  50. ^ Singer Manilow Enjoys the Benefits of LASIK, Vision Service Plan, October 2005 Archived July 19, 2011 at the Wayback Machine
  51. ^ People, Contra Costa Times, June 29, 1997
  53. ^ Barry Manilow OK After Dental Surgery Scare, Yahoo! Music, May 25, 1999
  54. ^ Manilow recovers after breaking nose, Associated Press, June 5, 2003
  56. ^ Manilow Returns Home Following Hospital Stay for 'Broken Heart', PRNewswire, February 2, 2004
  57. ^ "Singer Barry Manilow to Have Hip Surgery". Retrieved 2010-12-03. 
  58. ^ REAGANS CRAMP MANILOW'S STYLE, San Jose Mercury News, June 9, 1989
  60. ^ Johnny Carson | The King of Late Night The Official Tonight Show Website: Guest Search 6/22/89
  61. ^ "Robin Byrd with Barry Manilow". Retrieved 2010-12-03. 
  63. ^ FOR A SONG, The State, November 13, 1989
  64. ^ TAYLOR CELEBRATES 60TH AT MICKEY MOUSE PARTY, Associated Press, February 29, 1992
  65. ^ "Manilow Passes On Gala". Palm Beach Post. January 17, 1994.,0EAF86CE9819E992.html. 
  66. ^ "Manilow Mix-Up Resolved". Philadelphia Inquirer. February 12, 1994.,0EB2A5C08884B35A.html. 
  67. ^ Volzke, Jonathan (February 11, 1994). "DON'T PLAY BARRY? THEN PAY BARRY RADIO: Singer sues KBIG for touting no-Manilow format". The Orange County Register -.,0EAF3F3B8374B5AA.html. 
  68. ^ Lycan, Gary (February 11, 1994). "KBIG stops needling Manilow CONTROVERSY: The Los Angeles radio station backs down after mocking the singer in ads". The Orange County Register -.,0EB04E767104663D.html. 
  69. ^ SINGER UNHURT AFTER FOUR-CAR CRASH IN RAIN, San Jose Mercury News, February 22, 1996
  70. ^ Barry Manilow bends a fender, `The Mousetrap' keeps its spring, and Dorothy Hamill is sued..., The Orange County Register, February 21, 1996
  71. ^ Stargazing, The Kansas City Star, October 9, 1996
  72. ^ "People, Places & Things in the News: Barry Manilow -". Associated Press. March 29, 1997. 
  73. ^ "Small Victory Against Loud Music -". Associated Press. July 12, 1997. 
  74. ^ Manilow has a nose for success, The Sydney Morning Herald, May 9, 2002
  75. ^ Manilow Fund Set To Triple Aid For Hurricane Katrina Relief, PRNewswire, September 3, 2005
  76. ^ "Barry Manilow and Manilow Fund Matching Donations For Hurricane Katrina Relief". 2005-09-03. Retrieved 2010-12-03. 
  77. ^ "Barry Manilow Annoyed that his Music May Annoy Others". World Entertainment News. July 18, 2006. 
  78. ^ Manilow, Barry (July 18, 2006). "Barry's Response to Australia's Plan –". BarryNet. 
  79. ^ Kentucky Colonels, Honorable Order of. "Colonels website". Honorable Order of Kentucky Colonels. Retrieved 2009-12-21. 
  80. ^ "Cilla Black Discography: You'll Never Walk Alone (duet with Barry Manilow) – Single". Retrieved 21 May 2009 (2009-05-21). 
  81. ^ "Fans cheer Barry Manilow". Archived from the original on March 09, 2008. Retrieved 2010-12-03. 

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