Don Grady/BOOMER
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Don Grady/BOOMER

Band Pop Adult Contemporary


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"'Son' is rising at Fiamme in Thousand Oak"

Don Grady is turning 65 next month, but that doesn’t mean the ex-“My Three Sons” star has any intention of retiring. The Thousand Oaks resident, who played Robbie on the 1960-71 television series, still has a booming career as a composer and wants to inspire others in his age bracket to renew their passion for life, music and societal change.

His new CD, “Boomer,” is a soundtrack for fellow baby boomers who want to raise “the middle age higher,” he writes on his Web site, He released the CD in 2008 and now he’s taking the music to the people.

Grady and his band are performing at 7:30 p.m. Thursdays at Club Inferno inside Fiamme Restaurant & Bar, 3731 E. Thousand Oaks Blvd., Thousand Oaks. There’s a $20 cover, which can be applied to any food or beverage order in the dining room.

“I’m hoping that when people see me they will have as great a time with the music as I’ll be having on stage with the band,” he writes on his site. “The message, like an afterthought, will be there ... while the whole stage experience will be saying, ‘We’re still WAY alive, we’re still positive, and we still have a dream to fulfill. We ain’t anywhere near being done.’”

Grady’s career as a composer for film, television and the stage certainly shows no signs of slowing down. He’s written music for live stunt shows at Universal Studios, served as music director for the massive “EFX” show in Las Vegas and scored the Emmy-winning documentary “Why Dogs Smile & Chimpanzees Cry.” He’s also composed music for more than 30 Walt Disney DVD releases, including “Beauty and the Beast,” “The Emperor’s New Groove” and “The Lion King.” - Ventura County Star

"Former Child Actor Now a Musician"

Don Grady opened his weekly set at the Fiamme restaurant in Thousand Oaks with "I'm Here," a song he wrote. Although the song introduces Grady's entertaining and lively act, it also reintroduces him to an audience of fellow baby boomers who grew up watching him in the role of Robbie Douglas on the classic '60s sitcom "My Three Sons."

A former Mouseketeer, Grady virtually vanished from television when "Sons" went off the air in 1972. Since that time, however, he's enjoyed a highly successful career, acting on Broadway and working behind the scenes as a music director and composer for film and television programs.

His credits are too many to mention here, but highlights include writing the theme song for "The Phil Donahue Show," working as music director for Michael Crawford's long-running act at Las Vegas's MGM Grand Hotel and scoring a myriad of soundtracks for Disney's series of DVD movies.

So why is he starting all over again with a nightclub act at a local restaurant? "Music isn't speaking to us anymore," Grady told his audience of mostly fellow boomers. "Back in the '60s, music was everything to us. It defined us. It was in our DNA."

Unable to relate to today's music, Grady composed a number of highly personal songs that reflect his life and his experiences, both as a songwriter and a survivor of the 1960s. "I'm here to play you good music. I thought you could use it," he told his audience, which included his TV brother Stanley Livingston (who played Chip) and former actor Paul Petersen of "The Donna Reed Show."

Grady, an accomplished musician, plays keyboard in his sixpiece band, which he calls Boomer. His wife of 24 years, Ginny, sings backup and manages the act. Grady's songs are not for old fogeys. They show that he's been listening to all kinds of music through his decades as a professional musician. After the show, Grady mentioned a few favorites, such as the Beatles, the Byrds, soul jazz pianists Ahmad Jamal and Ramsey Lewis, and '70s jazz-rock act Steely Dan.

"I always liked composing," said Grady. "I've been in the studios for the last 20 years, but it's great coming out and playing my own songs for people."

Despite turning 65 this week, Grady looks at least 20 years younger. He still has a teenager's voice, a high-pitched baritone, but he performs with a seasoned, jazzy sensibility. At times, he sounds like Jim Croce or Jimmy Buffett, but in the end you hear Grady's own voice in all of his songs, which are all perfectly suited for today's listeners. This is no nostalgia act, although it's clear Grady yearns for a time that has long since passed.

In "Sandwiched," a calypsotinged song in 7/8 time, Grady sings of something many boomers are experiencing: raising a family while taking care of aging parents. "I'm a father and son; the one who's in between," he says. "Protoplasm Blues," which is featured on his recently released sixsong CD "Jazrokpop," deals wryly with the foibles of growing older. "Live it Up, Old Man" is an upbeat number that inspires people to celebrate life, no matter what their age. "Don't React," a humorous song about holding one's temper, reminds one of Dave Frishberg at his sardonic best.

At the end of his hourlong set, the appreciative audience's cheers overwhelmed those of Lakers fans watching the NBA Finals in the restaurant's bar area. Don Grady leanedover to kiss his mom, who sat with friends at a table in front of the bandstand. Robbie Douglas has grown up, but he hasn't forgotten where he came from.

Don Grady performs Thursday evenings at Fiamme at 3731 E. Thousand Oaks Blvd. His website is - Thousand Oaks Acorn


BOOMER, on JazRokPop records. Tracks available at

HOMEGROWN, an original album released
as Don Agrati on Elektra Records.

YELLOW BALLOON, Don was Luke R. Yoo, the disguised drummer.

The Children of St. Monica, single.

Composer for more than 30 Disney DVD’s including the last five Special Platinum Edition releases: The Emperor’s New Groove, Beauty and the Beast, The Lion King, Aladdin, and Jungle Book.



For many years Don Grady was well known as the actor who played Robbie Douglas in My Three Sons, or as a former Mouseketeer. But his creative talent always extended beyond acting. “I’m a musician who got lucky as an actor," Don said.

After 50 years in show business with success as a dramatic actor, sitcom star, recording artist, composer, and Mouseketeer, Don represents the best of the Boomer generation. He’s written BOOMER "JazRokPop", a CD with songs that speak to the issues of this ground-breaking generation, with titles like "Sandwiched" (raising kids on one side, while taking care of aging parents on the other). “We, the baby boomers, came out of an explosive decade, the 1960's. We were united in vision like no generation since. We were on fire! Although we've gone on to have our careers and families, we're still on fire....redefining our prime and raising the middle-age higher,” Don said.

“BOOMER is a somewhat humorous look at us, the our issues, our concerns, and our foibles. We still have a passion to 'do our own thing'...and the BOOMER show is a reminder and an inspiration of that.”

The highly personal songs are a blend of smooth jazz with r&b and some old-school rock.

This new CD release is only the latest in a longstanding successful career in the music industry. While still starring in My Three Sons, Don’s love of music put him on American Bandstand with a #25 Billboard Pop Chart single with the band Yellow Balloon.

He continued to compose, garnering an acknowledgement in legendary Beach Boy Brian Wilson’s 2004 SMiLE Tour program, “Television actor Don Grady was a talented songwriter who performed in a band called The Yellow Balloon. His solo single, The Children of St. Monica, also made good use of solemn, prayer-like harmonics.”

After eleven years on My Three Sons, Don left the show, ready to embark on a career as a recording artist. He wrote and produced HOMEGROWN, an original album released as Don Agrati on Elektra Records.The success of this album abroad led many European bands to cover Don’s songs…one of which earned a gold record for the Dutch band, Lucifer.

Following his first live theatrical performance starring in the national tour of Pippin, Don moved to New York, apppearing in many musicals, including Godspell, Damn Yankees, and Tom Sawyer. It was there that he made the pivotal decision to leave acting altogether, and launch full time into writing music. “The truth is, I ran out of money in New York. Since I had to start all over, I chose to focus on something that was the most meaningful to me.”

Don returned to Los Angeles, borrowing $5,000 from his father to get started, and before long, collected his first paycheck as a composer for Hugh Hefner’s Playboy Awards. ”My dad wasn’t too pleased when he saw all the photos lying around!”

Don pursued formal music training in composition, orchestration, and conducting under such legendary and renowned instructors as Albert Harris, David Angel, Bill Fritz, Bill Schaeffer, Buddy Baker, and his music mentor, Don Nemitz.

Soon, he began composing music for the live stunt shows at Universal Studios Hollywood and Florida. His score for The Wild, Wild, Wild West show ran for 14 years.

Don went on to create the theme song for The Phil Donahue Show, and became the Music Director for George Lucas Live, a 3-hour arena event for which he conducted the London Symphony Orchestra.

He also served as Music Director and composer for EFX starring Michael Crawford, a $52 million theatrical event which ran for eight years at the MGM Grand Hotel in Las Vegas.

Don’s first major television score, co-written with Don Nemitz, was The Revolutionary War, a 6-hour film which won the Cable Ace Award for Best Documentary. He followed that up scoring the Emmy Award-winning documentary, Why Dogs Smile & Chimpanzees Cry.

As fate would have it, Don returned to the Disney family in 2001, composing music for more than 30 Disney DVD’s including the last five Special Platinum Edition releases… The Emperor’s New Groove, Beauty and the Beast, The Lion King, Aladdin, and Jungle Book.

“After all these years, I’m still the plug-in Mouse over there!,” Grady jokes.

Other Disney highlights include a new Winnie the Pooh theme, songs for Disney’s Magic English, scoring game animations, and the first original Princess songs in 50 years, The Princess Tea Party Album and The Princess Christmas Album, co-written with multi-platinum lyricist, Marty Panzer. The Princess Party Album has just been released.

The BOOMER CD collection is a series of EP's on JazRokPop Records.