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Tom Chapin

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Biography

The younger brother of the late Harry Chapin, singer/songwriter Tom Chapin carried on his sibling's legacy admirably, becoming a popular children's entertainer. The son of jazz drummer Jim Chapin, he was born in New York City in 1945; he and his brothers performed music together regularly during their adolescence, later earning acclaim on the Greenwich Village club circuit. The Chapin Brothers band dissolved during 1964 when Tom left the country; upon returning a decade later, he issued the 1976 solo LP Life Is Like That. In 1979 he released Mother Earth, the first of his many children's recordings.

In the years to follow, Chapin moved back and forth between music for adults and kids, and for five years also hosted the children's TV series Make a Wish. Among his many albums are In the City of Mercy (1982), Family Tree (1988), Moonboat (1989), This Pretty Planet (1992), Billy the Squid (1992), Zag Zig (1994), and Common Ground (2001). Razor & Tie released his 17th album, Some Assembly Required, in 2005. He has also done songs and voice-over work for audio books, winning Grammys in 2001, 2002, and 2004 for Best Spoken Word Album for Children.

Chapin began releasing his music with Sundance Records in 2006, and in recognition of his 70th birthday they issued his folk album 70 in 2015. With 12 of its 14 tracks written or co-written by Chapin, and the other two covers of Pete Seeger and Steve Goodman songs, the record included backup by longtime collaborators Jon Cobert and Michael Mark, as well as guest appearances by bluesman Guy Davis, John Guth, his daughters Lily and Abigail of the Chapin Sisters, and more. ~ Jason Ankeny & Marcy Donelson, Rovi

Top Songs

Born:

13 March 1945 in Charlotte, NC

Genre
Years Active:

'70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Contemporaries