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In this Articulate exclusive, rock singer-songwriter Dean Friedman performs “Don’t Mourn, Don’t Cry” off his 1998 album, Songs for Grownups, at the Stotesbury Mansion in 2019.

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Dean Friedman
Dean Friedman

Dean Friedman is pop and folk singer-songwriter. He is best remembered for his 1977 hit “Ariel,” which stayed in the Billboard singles charts for twenty-two months.

Raised in a New Jersey suburb of New York City, Friedman began playing guitar at age 9 and performed professionally as a teenager. He studied music at City College of New York, and secured a record contract by the time he was 20. His first single, “Ariel,” was an international hit. His 1978 single “Lucky Stars” made number 3 in the UK singles chart. In 1982 his song “McDonald’s Girl” was banned by the BBC for its reference to the fast food company. Friedman was dropped by his record label when he refused to change the title. Although he continued writing music for film and television, he didn’t release his next album until 1998.

In the meantime, Friedman wrote the first consumer guide to synthesizers, made a video series on the nascent instruments, and worked as a designer of interactive virtual reality games. In 2011, “McDonalds Girl” was licensed for a McDonalds commercial.