RedOne is a Swedish music producer and songwriter from Morocco who gained international success over the last two decades. He has produced over 70 international hits, and 35 of those become No. 1 singles. He is the recipient of multiple ‘Grammy Awards’, and is currently one of the most sought after producers in the whole world. After giving up an ailing career as a rock musician, he decided to turn his attention to the production side of music. He worked hard to achieve fame in Sweden and greater Europe. Though he was quite successful, he decided to move to the United States to further his dream of producing and writing music. After a few rough years, he collaborated with up-and-coming artist Lady Gaga on her debut album, and he then gained recognition among American artists and built a reputation as a hit maker overnight, after years of struggle. He has since collaborated with, and produced and written songs for, Nicki Minaj, Jennifer Lopez, Usher, Quincy Jones, Enrique Iglesias, Nicole Scherzinger, Mary J Blige, ChebKhaled, Maylene Farmer, ‘One Direction’, ‘Midnight Red’ and Chawk among others. His unique sound has changed the face of music in many different countries, and he doesn't plan on stopping anytime soon
Childhood & Early Life
He was born Nadir Khayat on April 9, 1972 in Tétouan, Morocco as the youngest of nine children. Growing up in Morocco, he was exposed to music that originated from his native Africa, as well as Europe and the United States.
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His brother purchased a cassette of Europe's song, ‘Final Countdown’ for him. This inspired him to learn how to play guitar and start a band. At age 19, he and his best friend Redouan (The name ‘RedOne’ is a tribute) moved to Sweden to pursue a music career.
Though he stayed with a friend of his brother in Stockholm for a while, RedOne was eventually homeless. He sold vegetables outdoors and washed dishes, all for the equivalent of $40 a week.
Eventually, after a record deal had gone bad, he accepted that he failed as a rock singer, and decided to pursue a computer studies degree to pay the bills.
In 1995, after experimenting with computer technology, he decided that he wanted to learn the business of creating music with a computer.
In 1996, he showed Rami Yacoub, another former rock musician, a demo that he had produced. Yacoub had been a producer for years and he was impressed with the demo; inviting RedOne to work with him.
He became a big name in Sweden by 2001. Starting in the same year, he co-produced the ‘A*Teens’, a former ABBA tribute band.
He received official recognition in 2005 when he wrote ‘Break Free’ and ‘My Love Won't Let You Down’ for Daniel Lindstrom's self-titled album.
He co-wrote his first number one hit, Darin Zanyar's‘Step Up’, with Zanyar and Bilal Hajji, which won them both a Swedish ‘Grammy’ and an award for ‘Scandinavian Song of the Year’.
In 2006, he produced the single ‘Bamboo’ which became the official melody of the ‘2006 FIFA World Cup’.
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He decided to move to the United States in 2007 to try his luck there. He and his wife moved to Jersey City, New Jersey for its proximity to New York. They were penniless for awhile and unable to afford the rent.
He finally struck gold in America after a meeting with ‘Epic Records’. He was in the midst of playing the track ‘Whine Up’ in front of label president Charlie Walk, when Walk interrupted him and stated that he was a genius. He was named the producer of Kat DeLuna's album '9 Lives'.
Laurent Besencon, who managed both Lady Gaga and RedOne, introduced them to each other. They wrote a song called ‘Boys, Boys, Boys’ and their magical partnership was born.
By 2008, he produced a significant portion of Gaga's debut album, 'The Fame'. Together, they produced ‘Just Dance’ and ‘Poker Face’, both chart-topping hits. He continued writing and producing with Gaga and through her was introduced to other American artists, including Nicki Minaj.
In 2010, in conjunction with ‘Universal Music Group’, he founded his label ‘2101 Records’ (now ‘RedOne Records’), and the publishing company ‘2101 Songs’.
RedOne produced Lady Gaga's debut album 'The Fame' which was a commercial success and topped the charts in several countries. It peaked at number two on the 'Billboard 200' in the United States, where it sold 4.572 million copies. It is the seventh best-selling digital album in history.
Awards & Achievements
He won a ‘Grammy’ in 2010 for ‘Poker Face’,featuring in Lady Gaga's album 'The Fame'. The following year, he garnered another ‘Grammy for Best Pop Album’ for his production featuring Lady Gaga, 'The Fame Monster.'
In 2011, he received the ‘Moroccan Royal Award for Intellectual Excellence’; decorated officially by King Mohamed VI of Morocco.
He was named BMI’s ‘Songwriter of the Year’ and Billboard’s ‘Producer of Year’ and ‘No. 1 Songwriter’ in 2012.
Personal Life & Legacy
He lives with his 2 year old son, Daniel and his wife, Laila Khayat, in Los Angeles, CA. In 2011, he created ‘The 2101 Foundation’, a non-profit organization dedicated to reaching out to the disadvantaged youth and providing them with inspiration to pursue music, education and the arts.
RedOne is now considered one of the most sought after music producers and songwriters in the whole world. As of March 2015, he has an estimated net worth of U.S. $20 million. He is largely credited with Lady Gaga's meteoric rise to fame due to his contributions to the production of her debut album.
This famous songwriter-producer prefers staying out of the limelight and living a normal life with his good friends and family and watching soccer