John Charles Barrett (born October 28, 1953), known professionally as Desmond Child, is an American songwriter and producer. He was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2008.
Child’s career started when he formed an R&B-influenced pop rock band, Desmond Child & Rouge in 1975 with singers Myriam Valle, Maria Vidal, and Diana Grasselli, backed by hired musicians.The band was known for their inclusion on the soundtrack to The Warriors in 1979, with the song “Last of an Ancient Breed”, and for the song “Our Love is Insane”, which charted at No. 51 in the Billboard Hot 100. Their two albums received positive reviews but sold poorly and the group disbanded in 1980. One member, Maria Vidal, had a hit in 1985 with “Body Rock”.
Artists Child has worked with include Kiss, Cher, Aerosmith, Bon Jovi, Bonnie Tyler, Dream Theater, Per Gessle, Ricky Martin, Selena Gomez, and Kelly Clarkson. Desmond is credited with discovering Troy Curtis Tuminelli and recommending him to Edgardo Diaz before Tuminelli landed in Menudo, and, eventually, on Guiding Light. He was the key partner in Alice Cooper’s album Trash (1989). He was also responsible for co-writing the Ratt album Detonator (1990).
Child scored a Billboard Top 40 hit in 1991 as a solo artist with “Love on a Rooftop,” a song he had co-written with Diane Warren, originally recorded by Ronnie Spector, and later by Cher. “Love on a Rooftop” also peaked at number 55 on the Australian ARIA Charts.
He produced Meat Loaf’s album Bat Out of Hell III: The Monster Is Loose, and co-wrote six of its songs.
Child wrote the song “Believe in Me” for Bonnie Tyler in 2012 and one year later it was selected as the Eurovision Song Contest entry for the United Kingdom. Following the contest, Tyler received two Eurovision Song Contest Radio Awards for Best Song and Best Singer, making her the first UK representative to win the award.
Child was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2008. In 2013, he co-founded the Latin Songwriters Hall of Fame along with fellow Cuban-American composer Rudy Pérez. Desmond’s autobiography, Livin’ on a Prayer: Big Songs Big Life with David Ritz, is being released in early 2020