Steve Brown (composer)

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Steve Brown is a British composer, lyricist, record producer and arranger.


Brown composed the score and co-wrote the book and lyrics of the West End musical Spend Spend Spend[1] which starred Barbara Dickson and chronicled Viv Nicholson's rise and fall after winning a fortune in the football pools in the early 1960s. With comedian Harry Hill he co-wrote I Can't Sing! The X Factor Musical,[2] which premiered at the London Palladium on 5 March 2013. It was jointly produced by Stage Entertainment and Simon Cowell's company Syco; the show starred Nigel Harman as Simon Cowell and Cynthia Erivo as the main contestant. His musical adaptation of It's A Wonderful Life, co-written with Francis Matthews, was staged at the New Wolsey Theatre in Ipswich in 2009. In 2017 the two began work on a new commission, Champion, for the same theatre.

In March 2018 Brown completed filming the new ITV panel game, The Imitation Game, scheduled for broadcast in autumn of that year, appearing with his own six-piece band, he had previously written many of the songs for the satirical comedy show Spitting Image in the late 1980s and the entirety of the 1990s, originally providing just lyrics and eventually taking over permanently from Philip Pope as house composer/musical director, as well as providing many of the sung impressions. He has worked and appeared extensively with Rory Bremner in the 80s and 90s, completing UK tours and the BBC series, The Rory Bremner Show. Brown wrote a number of songs for BBC 2's Dead Ringers, even appearing briefly as Noel Gallagher with Jon Culshaw singing as Liam Gallagher, he has also acted as MD for impressionists Alistair McGowan and Ronni Ancona.

In 1995 he composed the music for The Ant & Dec Show on Children's BBC, and later worked on their SMTV Live programme, for which he wrote the Wonky Donkey jingle, among other themes, he continued to work extensively as a jingle writer for their ITV show Saturday Night Takeaway.

He played the fictional bandleader Glen Ponder in the Steve Coogan TV show Knowing Me Knowing You with Alan Partridge,[3] and has worked extensively with Coogan since, writing material and appearing as MD on two major UK tours including a West End run at The Lyceum in The Man Who Thinks He Is It, a further UK tour in 2008, The Tony Ferrino Phenomenon special and album and the song "Raped In The Face" for the film Hamlet 2. In April 2018 he worked again with Coogan on the BBC revival of the Alan Partridge character.

Other TV shows include Lee Mack's Not Going Out, The Brian Conley Show, BBC1 series New Tricks and Lenny Henry Goes to Town. He has written songs for classic BBC Children's TV shows, Playaway and Play School, and also the long-running ITV show My Parents Are Aliens. CITV's Scrambled! for which Brown provided theme song and numerous jingles, is now in its fifth series. In 2018 transmission began of the adventure game show Spyschool for which he provided theme music and the entire underscore.

As a performer Brown has featured on several radio series including the radio show Jammin' with Roland Rivron and The Lee Mack Show for BBC Radio 2 in which he took part in many of the sketches.

He has provided all the music and arrangements for British comedian Harry Hill's TV, radio, live, recording and film work since 1997, and worked on his ITV TV Burp show as musical director and jingle composer, and more recently providing the same for Harry Hill's Tea Time on Sky and Harry Hill's Alien Fun Capsule for ITV. In 2013 he wrote the orchestral score and all original songs for The Harry Hill Movie. Brown arranged and recorded all the music for Hill's 2015 revival of ITV's Stars In Their Eyes.

As a record producer Brown has worked on the triple platinum selling album Seasons of My Soul by Rumer[4] for Atlantic as well as the critically acclaimed and MOBO winning debut by Brit-nominated artist Laura Mvula, Sing To The Moon, for RCA records, both of which were top ten records on the UK album chart, he also produced Harry Hill’s Funny Times for Universal and most recently Little Black Book by Sarah Walk for One Little Indian Records. In 2014 Brown produced four tracks for Italian singer Noemi on her album Made in London which peaked at number 2 in the Italian album chart.

Personal life[edit]

Brown has two sons, stand up comedian Alfie Brown and musician Lenny Brown, from his first marriage to comedy actress and impressionist Jan Ravens,[5] for whom he still writes material. In 2010 he remarried, to actress Deborah Cornelius; they live in west London with Cornelius's daughter Manon.


  1. ^ "Spend Spend Spend". The Stage UK; the Stage UK. Retrieved 17 September 2018.
  2. ^ "I Can't Sing X Factor musical to close after just six-week run". The Guardian; the Guardian. Retrieved 17 September 2018.
  3. ^ "Harry Hill on Professor Branestawm, success, failure and his secret". Radio Times. Radio Times. Retrieved 17 September 2018.
  4. ^ "Rumer: this album's creation was a bloodbath". Telegraph. Telegraph. Retrieved 17 September 2018.
  5. ^ "Funny bones run in the family as fringe plays host to comic dynasties". The Guardian; the Guardian. Retrieved 17 September 2018.

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