Grammy award-winning producer and visionary, Dallas Austin is one of the most sought after producers in the entertainment business. His creativity and innovative style have shaped the sound of today’s Pop and R&B music worldwide, and in recent years have created a presence for Dallas in the film, fashion and nightlife industries.
Austin was born in Columbus, Georgia, where he began playing guitar and keyboards at the age of seven. He quickly became adept at playing drums, bass guitar, harmonica and any other instrument that was needed to further his understanding of music and production.
Following his move to Atlanta in 1986, he started playing in local bands. Soon afterwards he produced his first Motown single “Mr. DJ” by former Klymaxx member Joyce “Fenderella” Irby, featuring a rap by Doug E. Fresh. It went to number two on Billboard’s R&B charts in spring 1989, with many other hits following.
Since the late 80s, Austin has produced more than 60 hit singles which have debuted on the Billboard Hot 100 list with over 20 songs spending numerous weeks in the Top 10 list. He has had multiple Billboard number one hits, including “The Boy is Mine” from Brandy and Monica, and TLC’s “Creep.” Additionally, Austin’s work with TLC on the group’s critically acclaimed “Fanmail” album resulted Grammy for best R&B album at the 42nd Annual Grammy Awards in 1999.
The National Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences (NARAS) honored him during its 3rd annual Heroes Awards. This is the highest honor bestowed by an Academy Chapter and is given to honor outstanding individuals and institutions in the Georgia region that have improved the environment for the creative community.
In 2004, he received the Beacon Award from the Independent Media Artists of Georgia, Etc. (IMAGE) for his contribution to film during the Fourth Annual Awards ceremony. In 2006, Dallas was inducted into the Georgia Music Hall of Fame for his contribution to the music industry. Dallas was honored as one of Atlanta’s most Influential in 2011.
Not many other artists can claim to work with the variety of talent or music genre Austin has experienced. He has had the joy of working with Michael Jackson, Madonna, Rihanna, Kanye West Gwen Stefani and Lady Gaga. He has also worked with Aretha Franklin, George Clinton, Santana, Bjork, Brand New Heavies, Fishbone, Grace Jones, Tricky, Usher, Pink, Shakira, Janet Jackson, Macy Gray, Lionel Richie and Natalie Cole.
Dallas Austin is not only a producer, but he is also an innovator, creator and developer or what we know as Pop and R&B. Another Bad Creation, Boys II Men, Monica and TLC are all key projects whose inaugural albums and initial hit singles were written or produced by Austin.
Austin began his foray into film and TV when he produced his first motion picture project Drumline in 2002, which was based on his own life experience in a high school marching band. Following Drumline, Austin teamed up again in 2003 with friend and actor Orlando Jones for FX’s The Orlando Jones Show as the show’s music director. In 2004 he could be seen weekly as a Judge on Missy Elliot’s Road to Stardom on UPN.
Dallas teamed up with Will Smith to produce ATL, which was also based on his experiences growing up in Atlanta, Georgia.
Even with his many ventures, Austin remains heavily involved in the Dallas Austin Foundation, which he created in 2003 to develop the talents and skill set of urban youth by exposing them to various facets of the music and entertainment industries.
Key initiatives of the foundation include a college scholarship program, and the recently launched “Don’t Stop the Music” program, which was created to teach kids the ins and outs of the music business while providing an alternative resource for music instruction during this period of decreasing arts funding in public schools.
Austin is also very engaged in community outreach and legislative affairs in his home state of Georgia.
He was chosen by Governor Sunny Perdue to sit on a special Entertainment Commission to explore ways that more Entertainment business can be done in the state of Georgia. Austin has been influential in Georgia state affairs by testifying before the Georgia Senate Finance Committee to urge the passage of legislation that would provide additional incentives for the entertainment industry to bring film and other projects to Georgia.
Austin is also the creator and sole proprietor of a Rowdy Entertainment. Rowdy Entertainment, a production company, a recording studio, a record company, a film company, a fashion merchandising company, marketing/promotions company, and three publishing companies and a electronics company. Through Rowdy Austin is one of industry’s top creative executives and business mavens and forward thinking entrepreneurs.
Recently, Austin decided to expand his empire across the Atlantic to Europe and the UK where he has worked with some of the UK’s brightest new talents, including the biggest selling UK artist of 2016, Rag-n-Bone Man, Grammy Award winning Arrow Benjamin, UK Number 1 artist Ella Henderson and rising starlet Mabel McVey. He has also produced songs and mentoring with UK and European versions of the talent search franchise X-Factor.
A 2017 Global Citizen Forum US Ambassador, Austin championed a $300k fund-raise to benefit Hurricane relief for the island of Barbuda. Featured in Music Week magazine, he is also a co-founder of London’s most luxurious and successful nightclubs, Tape London. Making waves world-wide, Tape London the only club in the world with a built in studio, live space and music industry members club where Austin has welcomed Justin Bieber, Lady Gaga, Drake and the Weeknd to but name a few.