Born in New York City, Lionel began his entertainment career as a high school student in Atlanta, Georgia where he co-hosted the award-winning syndicated ABC television show, “Time Out”. This lead to a world tour with the international cast of “Up With People” which brought Lionel to Chicago where he pursued a performance diploma at Northwestern University.
Lionel began playing piano in a variety of Chicago venues and also worked as a cable television producer, a copy writer for advertising agencies after which he founded the quirky and successful “Bedrock Corporation” which achieved both regional and national success writing commercial spots & jingles for clients such as Kraft's "Cheezasorus Rex."
He then moved to Los Angeles and began work as a staff composer and music editor alongside award winning TV producer Steve Tyrell, on several television projects including NBC's “California Dreams” and “The Brady Bunch Movie”. Lionel moved on to film composing for the highly acclaimed 1995 classic film “Once Upon A Time... When We Were Colored”.
Later Lionel and Malcolm Jamal Warner (Theo from The Cosby Show) partnered to form the jazz/funk band, “Miles Long”. The Miles Long album, “The Many Facets Of Superman” featured En Vogue's Cindy Heron and soul icon, Teena Marie.
This lead to a featured vocalist performance by Lionel in John Powell's score for the 2002 feature film “The Bourne Identity” and a two year stint as band leader on the television series “Malcom & Eddie”. Lionel then joined actor Robert Downey Jr.’s band where he sang and
played piano with Robert on “The Oprah Winfrey Show”, “The Tonight Show”, “Ellen”, and “Good Morning America”.
Lionel then began a partnership with veteran television actor/director, Tim Reid, where he composed and supervised music beds for feature films such as “Asunder” (a New York times critics pick) and the television series “Linc’s” on Showtime. Following this Lionel remixed the million-seller single "Hard to Say I'm Sorry," by boy band, Az Yet featuring Peter Cetera and became Director of Music for the only full service African-American film studio in America, New Millennium Studios in Virginia.
Lionel then joined the touring band of singer Mariah Carey where he played piano and sang background vocals with Mariah on her sold-out worldwide tours. He played piano on her #1 single, "Never Too Far Hero" and co-wrote three songs (including the worldwide hit "Through
the Rain") from her multi-platinum album “Charmbracelet”.
One of Lionel’s proudest moments was arranging the “Star Spangled Banner” for Mariah Carrey and the Boston Pops Orchestra for the 2002 Superbowl following 9/11. This performance of Lionel’s arrangement was watched and heard by 85 million people in the USA alone.
This lead to a collaboration on “Walk On By” with pop prodigy Joss Stone featured on “Randy Jacksons Music Club Volume 1." The team also worked on many films produced by Walmart Family Pictures.
For the last few years Lionel's creativity has been focused in work with long time writing partner Randy Jackson from the television powerhouse series American Idol. He worked on countless projects including the Grammy nominated Sam Moore (of Sam and Dave) album “Overnight Sensation” and the Grammy award winning remake “A Family Affair” with Van Hunt, John Legend, and Joss Stone.
2010 brought a world tour with 1980‘s icon Rickie Lee Jones as her background singer and multi- instrumentalist. This landed Lionel in Sydney, Australia where he is currently lives and works as a solo artist, band leader for “Cole Soul and Emotion”, a radio DJ and music producer providing consulting services for bands, venues and events.
In May 2014 Lionel participated as a contestant on the Channel 9 TV show “The Voice Australia” where he worked closely with coaches Ricky Martin and Kylie Minogue.
You can still catch Lionel working with his father in the family business from Poland to Manhattan spreading the virtues of the Great American Songbook and its heirs. Born to a name synonymous with breaking down barriers, Lionel has carried on the family tradition and made inroads of his own. Uncle Nat obliterated the color line, cousin Natalie defines pop longevity, and Grammy-
nominated father Freddy proves one is never too old to be an overnight success.
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