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Justin Drew Tranter (born June 16, 1980) is an American musician, songwriter and activist. He has written songs for Britney Spears, Gwen Stefani, Linkin Park, Kelly Clarkson, Selena Gomez, Justin Bieber, DNCE, Kesha, In Real Life, 5 Seconds Of Summer, and Fall Out Boy, and frequently co-writes with fellow song-writer Julia Michaels. Tranter was the lead singer of Semi Precious Weapons, a rock band based in New York. He is also a board member of GLAAD, an organization that promotes LGBTQ acceptance in the entertainment and news industries.

Justin Tranter
Justin Tranter 2009 Tribeca portrait.jpg
Justin Tranter in 2009
Background information
Birth name Justin Drew Tranter
Born (1980-06-16) June 16, 1980 (age 38)
Origin Lake Zurich, Illinois, United States
Genres Pop
Occupation(s)
  • Musician
  • songwriter
  • activist
Instruments Vocals
Years active 2004–present
Labels
Associated acts
Website Official site

Contents

Early yearsEdit

Tranter and his three older brothers were raised by his parents in Lake Zurich, Illinois. He studied musical theatre at the Chicago Academy for the Arts from 1994–98. While at the Chicago Academy for the Arts, he started an annual AIDS Benefit.[1]

After graduation from high school, Tranter moved to Boston to study at the Berklee College of Music. Along with songwriting, he also took classes in business management, in preparation for a career in music. Tranter graduated from Berklee in three years, with a GPA of 3.9 and a degree in songwriting. While at Berklee, Justin founded Musicians With a Mission, a scholarship fund for LGBT youth education.[2]

In 2003, Justin won an Outmusic Award for the song "Blend In," co-written with Stephanie Delk, from "Scratched."[3]

Music careerEdit

In 2004, Tranter joined forces with fellow Berklee graduates, Cole Whittle, Dan Crean, and Aaron Lee Tasjan (who has since been replaced by Stevy Pyne) to form Semi Precious Weapons. He and Semi Precious Weapons opened for Lady Gaga on her Monster Ball from 2009-2011.[4]

After moving to Los Angeles in 2012, Tranter signed a new publishing deal with Warner/Chappell Music to write songs for other artists. He started collaborating with artists like Justin Bieber, Selena Gomez, and Hailee Steinfeld, as well groups like Fifth Harmony and Fall Out Boy.[5] Tranter and his frequent writing partner, Julia Michaels, collaborated on numerous Billboard hits including two songs, Good for You and Sorry, that held the number one spot on Pop Radio for three weeks each.[6] Tranter and Michaels also teamed-up to co-write Gwen Stefani's third solo album entitled This Is What the Truth Feels Like.[7]

In December 2015, Tranter was named one of Rolling Stone's "20 Biggest Breakouts of 2015" for his songwriting contributions to the 2015 pop charts.[8]

Tranter has since written for musicians ranging from Britney Spears to Linkin Park, as well as providing backup vocals for The Knocks and on Kygo's song "Carry Me", which was taken from his debut album, entitled Cloud Nine.

At the 2017 BMI Pop Awards hosted by Broadcast Music, Inc. (BMI), Tranter was named 2017 Pop Songwriter of the Year and collected awards for co-writing four of the top songs of the year.[9]

DiscographyEdit

Soundtrack appearancesEdit

Title Year Album
"Forever" 2017 The Lego Batman Movie: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack

Songwriting creditsEdit

Title Year Artist(s) Album Credits Written with
"I Choose U" 2013 Timeflies After Hours Co-writer Caleb Shapiro, Robert Resnick, Esjay Jones, Andreas Schuller
"Please Don't Say" 2014 Breathe Carolina Savages David Schmitt, Thomas Cooperman, Kyle Even, Eric Armenta, Luis Bonet, Ian Kirkpatrick
"Mistakes" David Schmitt, Thomas Cooperman, Eric Armenta, Luis Bonet, Ian Kirkpatrick
"Centuries" Fall Out Boy American Beauty/American
Psycho
Peter Wentz, Patrick Stump, Joshua Trohman, Andy Hurley, Jonathan Reuven Rotem, Michael Fonseca, Svetha Rao, Suzanne Vega
"Run" Nicole Scherzinger Big Fat Lie Julia Michaels, Felix Snow
"Cold World" Christopher Stewart
"Lose Myself"
(featuring Lynn Gunn)
2015 Seven Lions The Throes of Winter EP Jeffrey Montalvo, Ryland Blackinton, Daniel Keyes
"Like Mariah"
(featuring Tyga)
Fifth Harmony Reflection Jonathan Reuven Rotem, Svetha Rao, Michael Stevenson, Mariah Carey, Jermaine Mauldin, Manuel Seal Jr.
"Nostalgic" Kelly Clarkson Piece by Piece Ryland Blackinton, Daniel Keyes, Vaughn Oliver
"Good for You"
(solo / featuring A$AP Rocky)
Selena Gomez Revival Selena Gomez, Julia Michaels, Nicholas Monson, Nolan Lambroza, Rakim Mayers, Hector Delgado
"Love Myself" Hailee Steinfeld Haiz EP Julia Michaels, Mattias Larsson, Robin Fredriksson, Oscar Holter
"Prosecco" Timeflies Just for Fun Robert Resnick, Caleb Shapiro, Nicholas Monson
"Cake by the Ocean" DNCE Swaay EP / DNCE Joesph Jonas, Mattias Larsson, Robin Fredriksson
"Revival" Selena Gomez Revival Selena Gomez, Antonina Armato, Timothy Price, Chauncey Hollis, Julia Michaels, Adam Schmalholz
"Hands to Myself" Selena Gomez, Julia Michaels, Mattias Larsson, Robin Fredriksson, Karl Sandberg
"Me & the Rhythm" Selena Gomez, Julia Michaels, Mattias Larsson, Robin Fredriksson
"Body Heat" Selena Gomez, Antonina Armato, Timothy Price, Chauncey Hollis, Julia Michaels, Adam Schmalholz
"Perfect" Selena Gomez, Julia Michaels, Felix Snow
"Used to Love You" Gwen Stefani This Is What the Truth Feels Like Gwen Stefani, Julia Michaels, Jonathan Reuven Rotem, Teal Douville
"Jinx" DNCE Swaay EP / DNCE Oscar Gorres, Oscar Holter
"Sorry" Justin Bieber Purpose Justin Bieber, Julia Michaels, Michael Tucker, Sonny Moore
"Touch" Pia Mia Non-album single Pia Perez, Julia Michaels, Mikkel Eriksen, Tor Hermansen, Michael Tucker
"You're Such A" Hailee Steinfeld Haiz EP Julia Michaels, Mattias Larsson, Robin Fredriksson
"Rock Bottom"
(solo / featuring DNCE)
Julia Michaels, Mattias Larsson, Robin Fredriksson
"Hell Nos and Headphones" Julia Michaels, Mattias Larsson, Robin Fredriksson
"Our World"
(featuring Justin Tranter)
Shapov Axtone Ten Featured artist/
Co-writer
Alexander Shapovalov
"Make Me Like You" 2016 Gwen Stefani This Is What the Truth Feels Like Co-writer Gwen Stefani, Mattias Larsson, Robin Fredriksson
"Tied to You"
(featuring Justin Tranter)
The Knocks 55 Featured artist/
Co-writer
Benjamin Ruttner, Cole Whittle, James Patterson
"Misery" Gwen Stefani This Is What the Truth Feels Like Co-writer Gwen Stefani, Julia Michaels, Mattias Larsson, Robin Fredriksson
"You're My Favourite" Gwen Stefani, Julia Michaels, Greg Kurstin
"Where Would I Be?" Gwen Stefani, Julia Michaels, Greg Kurstin
"Truth" Gwen Stefani, Julia Michaels, Mattias Larsson, Robin Fredriksson
"Send Me a Picture" Gwen Stefani, Julia Michaels, Greg Kurstin
"Red Flag" Gwen Stefani, Svetha Rao, Jonathan Reuven Rotem
"Asking 4 It"
(featuring Fetty Wap)
Gwen Stefani, Julia Michaels, Mikkel Eriksen, Tor Hermansen, Willie Maxwell II
"Naughty" Gwen Stefani, Svetha Rao, Jonathan Reuven Rotem
"Me Without You" Gwen Stefani, Julia Michaels, Jonathan Reuven Rotem
"Rare" Gwen Stefani, Julia Michaels, Greg Kurstin
"Rocketship" Gwen Stefani, Julia Michaels, Jonathan Reuven Rotem, Teal Douville
"Getting Warmer" Gwen Stefani, Julia Michaels, Jonathan Reuven Rotem, Michael Green
"Obsessed" Gwen Stefani, Svetha Rao, Jonathan Reuven Rotem
"Splash" Gwen Stefani, Svetha Rao, Jonathan Reuven Rotem
"Loveable" Gwen Stefani, Svetha Rao, Jonathan Reuven Rotem, Lovy Lomgomba, Teal Douville, Ivan Corraliza
"Close"
(featuring Tove Lo)
Nick Jonas Last Year Was Complicated Julia Michaels, Mattias Larsson, Robin Fredriksson, Ebba Nilsson
"How Many Fucks" Erika Jayne Non-album single Adam "Gage" Bruce, Myah Marie
"Carry Me"
(featuring Julia Michaels)
Kygo Cloud Nine Kyrre Gorvell-Dhall, Julia Michaels
"Dope" Fifth Harmony 7/27 Julia Michaels, Jack Antonoff
"Hands" Various artists Non-album single Collaborative artist/Co-writer Julia Michaels, Michael Tucker
"Lying to You" Goldroom West of the West Co-writer Joshua Legg, Ryland Blackinton, Vaughn Oliver
"La La" Laura Marano Non-album single Laura Marano, Matthew Friedman, Hayley Warner
"Invitation" Britney Spears Glory Britney Spears, Julia Michaels, Nicholas Monson
"Do You Wanna Come
Over?
"
Julia Michaels, Mattias Larsson, Robin Fredriksson, Sandy Chila
"Slumber Party"
(solo / featuring Tinashe)
Julia Michaels, Mattias Larsson, Robin Fredriksson
"Just Like Me" Britney Spears, Julia Michaels, Nicholas Monson
"Better" Britney Spears, Julia Michaels, Michael Tucker
"Change Your Mind (No
Seas Cortés)"
Julia Michaels, Mattias Larsson, Robin Fredriksson
"Music" JoJo Mad Love Joanna Levesque, Jussi Karvinen, Hayley Warner
"I Can Only"
(featuring Alessia Cara)
Joanna Levesque, Jussi Kervinen, Hayley Warner, Alessia Caracciolo
"Edibles" Joanna Levesque, Jussi Karvinen, Hayley Warner
"DNCE" DNCE DNCE Joseph Jonas, Ilya Salmanzadeh, Rickard Goransson, James Alan Ghaleb
"Blown"
(featuring Kent Jones)
Joseph Jonas, Oscar Gorres, Oscar Holter, Edwin Shelton II, Daryl Kent Jones
"Good Day" Joseph Jonas, Mattias Larsson, Robin Fredriksson
"Naked" Joseph Jonas, Mattias Larsson, Robin Fredriksson
"Zoom" Joseph Jonas, Ilya Salmanzadeh, Rickard Goransson
"What You Do to Me" John Legend Darkness and Light John Stephens, Blake Mills, Matthew Sweeney, Julia Michaels, Michael Tucker
"Issues" 2017 Julia Michaels Nervous System EP Julia Michaels, Benjamin Levin, Mikkel Eriksen, Tor Hermansen
"Back to Beautiful"
(featuring Alan Walker)
Sofia Carson Non-album single Julia Michaels, Mikkel Eriksen, Tor Hermansen, Alan Walker, Anders Froen
"Believer" Imagine Dragons Evolve Daniel Reynolds, Wayne Sermon, Benjamin McKee, Daniel Platzman, Mattias Larsson, Robin Fredriksson
"Cold"
(featuring Future)
Maroon 5 Red Pill Blues Adam Levine, John Ryan II, Jacob Kasher Hindlin, Phil Shaouy
"Heavy"
(featuring Kiiara)
Linkin Park One More Light Chester Bennington, Michael Shinoda, Bradford Nelson, Julia Michaels
"Forever" DNCE The Lego Batman Movie: OST Cole Whittle, Daniel Crean, Steven Pyne
"Free to Fly"
(featuring Warren G)
Betty Who The Valley Jessica Newham, Zak Waters, Jonathan Smith, Craig Love, Cedrick Leonard, Sean Joseph, Jeffrey Grigsby
"Make You Memories" Jessica Newham, Zak Waters, Peter Thomas
"Kissing Strangers"
(featuring Nicki Minaj)
DNCE Non-album single Joseph Jonas, Mattias Larsson, Robin Fredriksson, Onika Maraj
"How Did We" Skylar Stecker Everything, Everything: OST Julia Michaels, Jussi Karvinen
"Bad Liar" Selena Gomez Non-album single Selena Gomez, Julia Michaels, Ian Kirkpatrick, David Byrne, Martina Weymouth
"Wanna Know Love" Jasmine Thompson Wonderland EP Julia Michaels, Michael Tucker
"Drama" Jasmine Thompson, Olivia Waithe, Eric Rosse
"Words" Jasmine Thompson, Julia Michaels, Oscar Gorres, Oscar Holter
"When a Woman" Shakira El Dorado Shakira Ripoll, Kurtis Mckenzie, Jonathan Mills, Julia Michaels, Magnus August Hoiberg
"Uh-Huh" Julia Michaels Nervous System EP Julia Michaels, Mattias Larsson, Robin Fredriksson
"Bad at Love" Halsey Hopeless Fountain Kingdom Ashley Frangipane, Eric Frederic, Rogét Chahayed
"I Don't Know Why" Imagine Dragons Evolve Daniel Reynolds, Wayne Sermon, Benjamin McKee, Daniel Platzman, Mattias Larsson, Robin Fredriksson
"Walking the Wire" Daniel Reynolds, Wayne Sermon, Benjamin McKee, Daniel Platzman, Mattias Larsson, Robin Fredriksson
"Start Over" Daniel Reynolds, Wayne Sermon, Benjamin McKee, Daniel Platzman, Mattias Larsson, Robin Fredriksson
"Paper Hearts" The Vamps Night & Day Connor Ball, Tristan Evans, James McVey, Bradford Simpson, Jacob Kasher Hindlin, Phil Shaouy
"Worst in Me" Julia Michaels Nervous System EP Julia Michaels, Mattias Larsson, Robin Fredriksson
"Make It Up to You" Julia Michaels, Mattias Larsson, Robin Fredriksson
"Just Do It" Julia Michaels, Mattias Larsson, Robin Fredriksson
"Pink" Julia Michaels, Mattias Larsson, Robin Fredriksson
"Finding You" Kesha Rainbow Kesha Sebert, Eric Frederic
"Boots" Kesha Sebert, Eric Frederic, Rogét Chahayed
"Friends"
(with Justin Bieber)
BloodPop TBA Justin Bieber, Julia Michaels, Michael Tucker
"Ins and Outs" Sofia Carson Non-album single Julia Michaels, Jason Evigan
"Eyes Closed" In Real Life Brandon Colbein, Wesley Period, Jussi Karvinen
"If I'm Lucky" Jason Derulo 777 Jason Desreuleaux, Mattias Larsson, Robin Fredriksson
"How You Feeling?" Superfruit Future Friends Mitch Grassi, Scott Hoying, Shawn Wasabi, Daniel Crean
"Tension" Fergie Double Duchess Fergie Duhamel, Alessandro Lindblad, Diana Gordon
"You Make It Feel Like
Christmas
"
(featuring Blake Shelton)
Gwen Stefani You Make It Feel Like Christmas Gwen Stefani, Blake Shelton, Michael Busbee
"My Gift Is You" Gwen Stefani, Michael Busbee
"When I Was a Little Girl" Gwen Stefani, Michael Busbee
"Under the Christmas Lights" Gwen Stefani, Michael Busbee
"Never Kissed Anyone With
Blue Eyes Before You"
Gwen Stefani, Michael Busbee
"Christmas Eve" Gwen Stefani, Michael Busbee
"Repercussions" Bea Miller Aurora Beatrice Miller, Julia Michaels, Jesse Shatkin
"Home" Nick Jonas Ferdinand: OST Nicholas Jonas, Nicholas Monson
"Help Me Out"
(with Julia Michaels)
Maroon 5 Red Pill Blues Adam Levine, Julia Michaels, Thomas Pentz, Henry Allen
"Into It" 2018 Camila Cabello Camila Camila Cabello, Adam Feeney, Louis Bell, Kaan Gunesberk, Ryan Tedder
"Are You" Julia Michaels Fifty Shades Freed: OST Julia Michaels, Mattias Larsson, Robin Fredriksson
"Make Me Feel" Janelle Monae Dirty Computer Janelle Robinson, Julia Michaels, Mattias Larsson, Robin Fredriksson
"Keeping a Secret" Bleachers Love, Simon: OST Jack Antonoff
"Thru Your Phone" Cardi B Invasion of Privacy Belcalis Almanzar, Benjamin Levin, Alexandra Tamposi, Andrew Wotman
"Beyond" Leon Bridges Good Thing Todd Bridges, Nathaniel Mercereau, Eric Frederic, Austin Jenkins, Joshua Block
"Forgive You" Todd Bridges, Nathaniel Mercereau, Eric Frederic
"Mrs." Todd Bridges, Zachary Cooper, Eric Frederic, Victor Dimotsis
"Jump"
(featuring Trippie Redd)
Julia Michaels TBA Julia Michaels, Nicholas Monson, Michael White IV
"Pictures of You"[10] HMLTD Hate Music Last Time Delete Anchilleas Sarantaris, Duke Peterman, Henry Chrisholm, Nicholas Mohnblatt, Zack Cazes, James Donovan, Jussi Karvinen
"Right Moves"
(featuring Keida & Shenseea)
Christina Aguilera Liberation Christina Aguilera, Marcos Palakios, Bryan Nelson, Julia Michaels, Taylor Parks, Makeida Beckford, Chinsea Lee
"Valentine" 5 Seconds of Summer Youngblood Calum Hood, Luke Hemmings, Ashton Irwin, Michael Elizondo
"Talk Fast" Calum Hood, Luke Hemmings, Michael Clifford, Rami Yacoub, Carl Falk
"Moving Along" Calum Hood, Luke Hemmings, Ashton Irwin, Michael Clifford, Rami Yacoub, Carl Falk
"If Walls Could Talk" Calum Hood, Ashton Irwin, Julia Michaels, Nolan Lambroza
"Empty Wallets" Calum Hood, Luke Hemmings, Ashton Irwin, Michael Clifford, Rami Yacoub, Carl Falk
"Monster Among Men" Calum Hood, Luke Hemmings, Ashton Irwin, Michael Clifford, Rami Yacoub, Carl Falk
"Meet You There" Calum Hood, Ashton Irwin, Wayne Hector, Rami Yacoub, Carl Falk
"When You Walk Away" Calum Hood, Luke Hemmings, Ashton Irwin, Michael Clifford, Wayne Hector, Rami Yacoub, Carl Falk
"Best Friend" Calum Hood, Ashton Irwin, Michael Elizondo
"I'm a Mess" Bebe Rexha Expectations Bleta Rexha, Asia Whiteacre, Meredith Brooks, Shelly Peiken
"Hallelujah" Years & Years Palo Santo Olly Alexander, Greg Kurstin, Julia Michaels, Michael Goldsworthy
"Preacher" Olly Alexander, Julia Michaels, Jesse Shatkin
"Who Do You Think You Are?" Troye Sivan Bloom Troye Mellet, Julia Michaels, Nicholas Monson

AdvocacyEdit

Tranter began his activism with the initiation of an annual AIDS benefit while attending high school at the Chicago Academy for the Performing Arts.[1] His advocacy continued while attending Berklee where he founded Musicians With a Mission, a scholarship fund for LGBT youth education.[2] In 2016, after flying to Orlando to help with the aftermath of the 2016 Orlando nightclub shooting, Tranter joined with frequent collaborator, Julia Michaels, and GLAAD CEO, Sarah Kate Ellis to find a way to make a larger contribution. Through Interscope Records, and joined by many talented artists and the music community, they brought about the release of the charity single "Hands" to raise funds for Equality Florida Pulse Victims Fund, GLAAD, and the GLBT Community Center of Central Florida.[11]

In February 2017, Tranter joined the National Board of Directors for GLAAD, an organization that promotes LGBTQ acceptance in the entertainment and news industries.[12] As part of the GLAAD Media Awards in May and June 2017, Tranter raised $123,000 for GLAAD by auctioning off four individual songwriting and recording sessions.[13]

Tranter is also a long-time vegan, vegetarian since 1995 and a supporter of Mercy for Animals.

Design careerEdit

Tranter's jewelry company, Fetty, grew out of necklaces he designed to sell as merchandise for the Semi Precious Weapons shows.[14] These rock-and-roll inspired pieces consist mostly of heart and weapon themed charm necklaces and earrings.

In 2008, he designed a limited-edition sneaker for DKNY.[15]

Television appearancesEdit

Tranter has appeared as a guest on the E! cable network show Chelsea Lately.[16] In December 2008, he also appeared as a coach on the MTV reality show MADE in which he helped a young girl transform into a "rock star".[17] Tranter appears in the diner in the music video for Telephone by Lady Gaga.[18]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b "17th Annual Academy AIDS Benefit". Retrieved September 25, 2014. 
  2. ^ a b "Semi Precious Weapons on Apple Music". 
  3. ^ http://www.queermusicheritage.us/awards3.html
  4. ^ "Inside Lady Gaga's Monster Ball". November 2012. Retrieved January 5, 2016. 
  5. ^ "This Rocker Has Been Writing All Of Your Favorite Pop Songs". November 2015. Retrieved January 5, 2016. 
  6. ^ "How an Unlikely Duo Became the Hottest Songwriters in Pop Music". January 2016. Retrieved January 7, 2016. 
  7. ^ "Gwen Stefani: How Making My New Album Saved My Life". March 18, 2016. Retrieved June 2, 2017. 
  8. ^ "20 Biggest Breakouts of 2015". December 2015. Retrieved January 5, 2016. 
  9. ^ "WARNER/CHAPPELL NAMED MUSIC PUBLISHER OF THE YEAR AT BMI POP AWARDS". May 10, 2017. Retrieved June 2, 2017. 
  10. ^ https://www.qobuz.com/gb-en/album/pictures-of-you-hmltd/m066vm1pu3vea
  11. ^ "Britney Spears, Pink, Selena Gomez Join 'Hands' for Orlando: How the All-Star Song Came to Life". Retrieved July 6, 2016. 
  12. ^ "Hitmaker Justin Tranter Joins GLAAD's National Board of Directors: 'I'm Using the Success I've Had to Help Other People Shine'". February 2017. Retrieved June 2, 2017. 
  13. ^ "GLAAD Media Awards: Songwriter Justin Tranter Raises $123K With Auction for Studio Sessions". May 17, 2017. Retrieved June 2, 2017. 
  14. ^ "Semi Precious Weapons Official Bio". April 2010. Archived from the original on 2011-07-08. Retrieved December 12, 2008. 
  15. ^ Newman, Sabrina (February 7, 2008). "StyleHive Sneak Peek: Justin Tranter's Exclusive DKNY Sneaker Line". Archived from the original on December 10, 2008. Retrieved December 12, 2008. 
  16. ^ "Guest Appearance on Chelsea Lately". November 2012. Retrieved March 3, 2015. 
  17. ^ "MTV MADE: Rock Star. Season 9, Episode 30". December 6, 2008. Retrieved December 12, 2008. 
  18. ^ "Telephone (Video)". November 2012. Retrieved March 3, 2015.