Anthony Peter Hatch (born 30 June 1939), credited as pen name Tony
Hatch, Fred Nightingale and Mark Anthony, is an English composer for
musical theatre and television. He is also a noted songwriter,
pianist, arranger and producer.
1 Early life and early career
2 Collaboration with Petula Clark
3 Collaboration with
Jackie Trent and later career
4 Other recent events
5 Family life
6 Selected compositions
6.1 Film and television
7 See also
9 External links
Early life and early career
Hatch was born in Pinner, Middlesex. Encouraged by his musical
abilities, his mother – also a pianist – enrolled him in the
London Choir School in Wansunt Road, Bexley, Kent when he was 10.
Instead of continuing at the Royal Academy of Music, he left school in
1955 and found a job with Robert Mellin Music in London's Tin Pan
Not long after working as a tea boy, he was writing songs and making a
name for himself within the recording industry, joining The Rank
Organisation's new subsidiary Top Rank Records; there he worked for
Decca Records A&R man Dick Rowe. While he served his
National Service, he became involved with the Band of the Coldstream
On his return in 1959, Hatch began producing Top Rank artists such as
Bert Weedon, the then unknown
Adam Faith ("Ah, Poor Little Baby"),
Josh MacRae (together with MacRae's early recordings with Scottish
folk trio The Reivers), Jackie Dennis, Carry On comedy actor Kenneth
Connor, and The Knightsbridge Strings, and started his own recording
career with a cover version of Russ Conway's piano instrumental "Side
In 1960, Garry Mills's (trumpeter Nat Gonella's nephew) recording of
Hatch's composition "Look For A Star", featured in the film Circus of
Horrors, became a Top Ten hit in the UK for Top Rank. Four versions of
the song charted simultaneously in the United States, including Mills'
original and a version by 'Garry Miles' (a recording alias of future
member of The Crickets, Buzz Cason). Top Rank, despite some worldwide
success with artists such as Jack Scott and The Fireballs, ultimately
failed because of an unusual distribution arrangement with EMI.
A swift succession of events ensued through 1961 that Top Rank was
sold to EMI, briefly operated as a subsidiary, with hits by John
Leyton, and shuttered, with its artists transferred to other EMI
labels. Hatch moved on to a part-time job with Pye Records, where he
assisted his new mentor, Alan A. Freeman, with the recording of
"Sailor", a number 1 hit for Petula Clark.
Hatch continued to write songs for Pye artists, sometimes under the
pseudonym 'Mark Anthony', including the popular "Messing About on the
River" for Josh MacRae. In 1963,
Philadelphia teen idol Bobby Rydell
hit the charts with "Forget Him" written and produced by Hatch, who
went on to produce, arrange and write for other American stars such as
Chubby Checker, Connie Francis, Pat Boone,
Big Dee Irwin and Keely
Smith. In 1964 he wrote (under the pseudonym of 'Fred Nightingale')
the Searchers' hit "Sugar and Spice".
While at Pye, he produced many of their artists: The Searchers, David
Bowie, Mark Wynter, The Settlers, the Viscounts, Julie Grant, Gary
Miller, Benny Hill, The Overlanders, Roy Budd, The Brook Brothers,
Jimmy Justice, The Montanas, Miki & Griff, Emile Ford, Craig
Douglas, Bruce Forsyth, Sue Nicholls, The Breakaways, Norman Vaughan,
Buddy Greco, Sacha Distel, Anne Shelton, Sweet Sensation, David
Parton, and Graduate among others.
His production of The Searchers' entire Pye catalog was significant in
that nearly every song was issued in true stereo. The only other UK
chart acts with so much stereo was
George Martin producing The Beatles
and Ron Richards producing The Hollies (although a handful of early
Hollies albums were initially issued only in mono).
Hatch also recorded various lounge style albums with his orchestra; he
also made solo piano recordings and some tracks as a vocalist.
Collaboration with Petula Clark
After "Valentino", the first of Hatch's compositions to be recorded by
Petula Clark, he became her regular producer. They collaborated on a
series of French language recordings for Vogue Records. (Clark, whose
husband was French and who spoke the language fluently, had a
successful career throughout Europe.) Hatch became one of her regular
songwriting partners, in addition to supplying English lyrics for
songs she had composed with French lyricists.
In 1964 Hatch made his first trip to New York City in search of new
material for Clark. The visit inspired him to write "Downtown",
The Drifters in mind. When Clark heard the still
unfinished tune, she told him that if he could write lyrics to match
the quality of the music, she would record the song as her next
single. Its release transformed her into a huge international star,
topping charts globally early in 1965, and introducing her to the US
market. "Downtown" peaked at number two in Britain, stuck behind the
Beatles' massive hit "I Feel Fine". Clark then charted with three
consecutive hits written by Hatch: "I Know a Place", "You'd Better
Come Home", and "Round Every Corner", which all charted higher in the
US than in the UK. She and Hatch co-wrote "You're The One", which
peaked at 22 in Britain but which gave
The Vogues a major debut hit in
Tony Hatch and
Petula Clark became established as the
British equivalent of
Burt Bacharach and Dionne Warwick. In 1965
Hatch's first album under his own name was released. The Downtown
Sound of Tony Hatch, features instrumental versions of some of his
best known songs, along with new compositions.
The song "Call Me", written for and recorded by
Petula Clark in 1965,
was recorded by
Chris Montez later in the year. Released in November
1965, Montez's version entered the US Easy Listening Top 40 in
Billboard that December, and the Billboard Hot 100 in January 1966,
peaking that March on the Easy Listening chart at #2 and on the Hot
100 at #22.
Petula Clark's run of 1966 and 1967 hits include many written by
Hatch: "My Love" (a US number one), "A Sign of the Times", "I Couldn't
Live Without Your Love", "Who Am I", "Colour My World", "Don't Sleep
in the Subway" and "The Other Man's Grass Is Always Greener". He wrote
all of these (except "My Love") with his wife Jackie Trent. "A Sign of
the Times", "Who Am I" and "Colour My World" were not hits in Britain.
Jackie Trent and later career
In 1964, Hatch was hired to write his first television theme, for the
soap opera Crossroads. It would become one of his best-known
compositions, and has the distinction of being re-worked by Paul
McCartney and Wings. He would continue to write television themes
throughout the 60s, including the themes to Man Alive, the cult series
The Champions, the crime anthology series Who-Dun-It, and The Doctors.
When asked to write a song to be featured in the Inspector Rose
series, It's Dark Outside, he supplied "Where Are You Now?", with
lyrics and vocals by a recently acquired Pye artist, Jackie Trent. The
song immediately clicked with the public and shot to number 1 in the
Though still married to his first wife, Hatch began an affair with
Jackie Trent, who had become a frequent songwriting collaborator. This
ongoing affair was the inspiration for the song "I Couldn't Live
Without Your Love".
Hatch and Trent were married in 1966. Their duet "The Two Of Us"
reached number three in the Australian charts in 1967 and created a
demand for concert and cabaret performances earning the duo the
nickname of "Mr & Mrs Music". The couple also wrote the song
"Joanna", a hit for Scott Walker. One of their more unusual
collaborations was the song "We'll Be With You" written for Stoke City
Football Club in the club's successful run for the League Cup in 1972.
The song featured the team and supporters and was recorded at the
supporters club using PYE Records mobile studio. The song is still
sung by fans as the team runs out on matchdays.
During the 1970s, Hatch and Trent diversified into musical theatre.
Their first project, The Card, based on Arnold Bennett's novel, with
Keith Waterhouse and Willis Hall, ran in London's West End
Jim Dale and
Millicent Martin in the lead roles. (Coincidentally,
Petula Clark had starred in the 1952 film version with Alec Guinness.)
An original cast album was released in 1975. A rewritten version of
the show, starring Peter Duncan and Hayley Mills, played the Regent's
Park Open Air Theatre in the 1990s and spawned a new cast album. The
second Hatch/Trent musical was Rock Nativity, with book and lyrics by
David Wood. Initiated and produced by Cameron Mackintosh, it first
played in Newcastle. An updated version of the show toured nationally
in 1976 and was broadcast nationally by Scottish TV. A full-length
concert version was recorded at the
Cork Opera House
Cork Opera House for the Irish
television state broadcaster RTÉ. In 1972, he composed the original
Emmerdale Farm, as well as the themes to Hadleigh and
Sportsnight. During the 1970s Hatch was also a regular panellist on
the talent show
New Faces where his blunt style of assessing the
contestants has proved to be a forerunner of approaches to come in
later, similar series.
After completing the music score to the movie
Sweeney 2 in 1978, Hatch
and Trent moved to Dublin, where they remained for four years, hosting
their own TV series, Words And Music and It's A Musical World. Hatch
continued to produce hit TV themes for series such as Seagull Island
and Airline before moving to Australia in 1982. While there, the
couple wrote one of their most famous compositions, the theme for the
TV soap opera Neighbours. They separated in 1995, and divorced in
2002. Trent died on 21 March 2015 in
Menorca after a long illness.
Other recent events
Hatch made a guest appearance on Graham Fellows's radio show, The
Shuttleworths in 1994.
In 2003, a disco remix of the original recording of "Downtown" was
released in Australia by The OUTpsiDER with the blessing of both Hatch
and Clark and became a hit. A souvenir CD box set of six of Hatch's
albums (four from the 1960s and two from the 1970s – including one
with Jackie Trent), all in replicas of their original covers, was
released in 2005.
In 2010, the song "Push a Little Button", written by Hatch and
performed by his 15-year-old sister Ninette, and released on the Pye
Records label in 1966, was used as the soundtrack for a campaign by UK
TV Licensing, promoting the availability of online methods of paying
the UK TV licence which funds the BBC. Hatch performed at the
Hackney Empire on 9 September 2012, for a Grand Order of Water Rats
evening - 'The Golden Years of Variety'. At the piano he played the
theme tunes of
Emmerdale Farm, Neighbours, and Crossroads and
encouraged a sing-along to "Downtown".
On 13 June 2013, Hatch was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame,
at a ceremony held at the New York Marriott Marquis. He was
accompanied by his wife, Maggie.
More recently Tony has returned to the public eye, performing in
October 2016 at the inaugural Variety Hall of Fame Awards, with Petula
Clark, launching a new look website at www.tonyhatch.co.uk and hosting
"As Heard on TV" on
BBC Radio 2
BBC Radio 2 on 1 November 2016.
Hatch has two daughters from his first marriage to Jean, as well as a
son and daughter from his marriage to Jackie Trent. He now lives in
Menorca, Spain, with his third wife, Maggie.
Film and television
1964: Crossroads (TV)
1965: Man Alive (TV)
The Champions (TV)
1969: Who-Dun-It (TV)
1969: The Doctors (TV)
1972: Travels with My Aunt (Film)
Emmerdale Farm (TV)
1972: Mr & Mrs (TV)
1973: Hadleigh (TV)
1973: Love Story (TV)
Backs to the Land (TV)
Sweeney 2 (Film)
1981: Seagull Island (TV)
1982: Airline (TV)
1983: Waterloo Station (TV)
Category:Songs written by Tony Hatch
Tony Hatch – Discover music, videos, concerts, stats, &
pictures at". Last.fm. 11 February 2009. Retrieved 12 April
Tony Hatch Discography at Discogs". Discogs.com. 30 July 1939.
Retrieved 12 April 2011.
^ "Tony Hatch". Spectropop.com. Retrieved 12 April 2011.
^ Gilliland, John (1969). "Show 29 - The British Are Coming! The
British Are Coming!: The U.S.A. is invaded by a wave of long-haired
English rockers. [Part 3]" (audio). Pop Chronicles. University of
North Texas Libraries.
^ "TV Licensing presses button on new campaign". Marketing Week. 18
Jan 2010. Retrieved 6 March 2010.
Spectropop: Tony Hatch
Tony Hatch discography at Discogs
Tony Hatch on IMDb
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