Michael McDonald was a member of Steely Dan for a spell and joined the Doobie Brothers in 1975. He wrote and sang on some of the Doobie’s biggest hits. During the late seventies, he was co-writing songs with other musicians, including Kenny Loggins and Carly Simon. He also did studio work for other groups. He sang and/or played keyboards on records by Christopher Cross, Stephen Bishop, Jack Jones, Bonnie Raitt, and Toto.
And Lauren Wood.
Lauren began singing with Rebecca and the Sunnybrook Farmers in the mid-sixties and sang back-up vocals for a Frank Zappa album in 1973.
She formed Chunky, Novi, and Ernie with her cousin Novi Novog and bass player Ernie Emerita and released two albums in 1973 and 1977. The co-producers of the albums were Ted Templeman (from Harpers Bizarre) and John Cale (from The Velvet Underground).
In 1979, Lauren recorded her first solo album. The album cover included a picture of the three members of the group and the credit “Featuring Novi and Ernie,” on the bottom of the front cover. Several other guest musicians helped with the album. The most notable was Michael, who sang harmony on the song Lauren wrote that became her most successful single, Please Don’t Leave. The record peaked at #24 on the Hot 100 and reached as high as #5 on the Adult Contemporary chart.
During an interview with Dick Clark on American Bandstand, Lauren mentioned that her dream was to write music for films, and that dream later came true. After recording another album in 1981, Lauren wrote and performed songs for film soundtracks, including Police Academy 3: Back in Training, The Tigger Movie, The Little Mermaid II: Return to the Sea, and Return to Never Land.
In 1990 she wrote and recorded the song Fallen for the film Pretty Woman. Johnny Mathis and other artists recorded covers of the song.
Lauren recorded two additional albums in 1999 and 2006 and maintains her own website at http://www.laurenwood.com/
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