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SCV -- Hollywood's Backlot: Damon Sharpe

Local man moves from teen idol to hot songwriter/producer

Posted: November 25, 2009 3:53 p.m.
Updated: November 27, 2009 6:06 a.m.

Valencia resident Damon Sharpe has become a sought-after music producer and songwriter.

 
"When I wrote the song ‘Love Don't Cost a Thing' for Jennifer Lopez, that's when my song writing and producing career really started to take off. It was one of her biggest hits, and we won an ASCAP award for it," said Damon Sharpe.

A Valencia resident, Sharpe, who originally hailed from Cleveland, knew at a very early age just what he wanted to be when he grew up. And that was to be a successful entertainer in show business. Because of his talent, drive and his family's willingness to relocate to Los Angeles, he was able to pursue his dreams full-force.

Sharpe was quickly recognized in Hollywood, and appeared in more than 25 national commercials and guest starred on various television shows. However, his big break came when he landed a role on NBC's Saturday morning hit series "The Guys Next Door." Not only was he able to showcase his acting, singing and dancing abilities, but he became a teen idol overnight, gracing the covers of teen magazines, and having merchandise created in his likeness.

What made this teen pop sensation change gears? It was his admiration, love and respect for singer/songwriters such as Stevie Wonder, Michael Jackson and Prince, combined with his desire to flex his creative muscles and see his visions become a reality.

"I love being a music producer because I'm in charge of creating the music, writing lyrics, arrangement and overseeing all the musicians. And one of the best perks of being a music producer is being able to set your own schedule - to be able to take off in the middle of work and go grab dinner, go see a movie, bowl or do anything fun to just clear your head," said Sharpe.

And after years of hard work he once again proved that ambition and dedication does pay off. As of today, Sharpe is a sought-after music producer/songwriter working with the likes of Anastacia, Kelly Rowland, Monica, Natalie Cole and Corbin Bleu. He also wrote and produced songs for the Grammy Award-winning "Chicago" soundtrack. In 2005 Sharpe released the star-studded Hurricane Katrina relief record "Come Together Now," co-written with actress Sharon Stone, featuring a superstar roster of talent including Celine Dion, Joss Stone, Jesse McCartney, Patti LaBelle, Wyclef Jean and many more.

Producing "Come Together Now" was one of Sharpe's favorite projects to work on. Not only was he able to work with a variety of artist, but also the proceeds went to the Hurricane Katrina victims.

To stay ahead of the curve Sharpe has an eclectic music selection. Listening to artists such as Coldplay, Owl City, Gucci Mane and Lil Wayne, while referencing classics like those of The Beatles, he's able to create music for all different audiences.

So what's on Sharpe's to do list next year? Well, it seems 2010 will be an exciting and busy year for him. His group, Velvet Angels, created and produced by his production company, Desert Prophet, partnered with Island Def Jam Records, will release its very first album early next year. He's also heading back into the studio with Kelly Rowland of Destiny's Child to co-produce and co-write her next album, and has two songs featured on Lolene's album, a new artist signed to EMI.

With an impressive list of credits and having produced a variety of talented artists in various genres, Sharpe humbly expressed hoping to one day produce and write for Justin Timberlake, Beyonce, Weezer and Coldplay. He's a huge fan of their work and admires their professionalism.

So who's been his favorite artist to work with to date? His answer was simple. Sharpe said, "Every experience with an artist is always different and fun, so it's really hard to pick just one. I'm extremely fortunate to have been given the opportunity to work with a diverse group of talented artists thus far and hope to continue to collaborate with many more in the future."

When Sharpe isn't in the recording studio, you can catch him chowing down at New Moon, his favorite Chinese food restaurant in Valencia.

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