GRAMMY-nominated producer/songwriter/musician Chuck Harmony was the recent guest for an installment of The Recording Academy's 5 Questions With … series. Held at The Recording Academy's headquarters in Santa Monica, Calif., Harmony discussed artist collaboration, the first time he heard his music on the radio and the pressure of working with artists in the studio, among other topics. Part of the discussion was driven by questions submitted by fans using the #5QW hashtag on Twitter.
"Music in this realm is a business … so you have to kind of put on both hats," said Harmony. "You've got to be the musician but you still have to understand that business is business."
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A native of East St. Louis, Ill., Harmony developed a passion for music at an early age, and by the time he reached high school he was playing the drums, tuba and trombone. He furthered his education at Alabama State University where he studied music and began taking piano lessons, with the goal of becoming a jazz pianist and, later, a music teacher. After deciding he wanted to solely focus on his music career, Harmony relocated to Atlanta and began performing with local talent. Harmony's first big career break came in 2007 when he collaborated with GRAMMY winner Ne-Yo to co-write "I Got Nothin' Left," which was recorded by Celine Dion and featured on her 2007 album Taking Chances.
Harmony has since worked with artists including Mary J. Blige, Keri Hilson, Jennifer Hudson, Janet Jackson, John Legend, and Rihanna, among others. In 2008 he garnered a GRAMMY nomination for Album Of The Year for co-producing Ne-Yo's Year Of The Gentleman. Harmony currently operates Harmony House Entertainment, a full-service music company in partnership with Trevor Gates, Michael "Trak Guru" Johnson and Carlos Taylor.