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Letter to RCA CEO Clive Davis    June 7, 2004

Dear Mr. Clive Davis:

I saw you recently on "American Idol." I am a big fan of that show, and I am also a big fan of Barry Manilow, of your Arista label.

Enclosed is a copy of the autographed photo sent to me and my wife after we had attended a concert at "The Grove" in Anaheim, California, where Mr. Manilow had dedicated his final, and my favorite, song, "I Write the Songs," to my wife and me, as well as our soon-to-be-born child.

Autographed photo from Singer/Songwriter Barry Manilow to Steve and Lucille Mozena

Arista is a very special name to me. I named my daughter, who is nearly two years old now, Arista. Her full name is Arista Zooee Mozena. I¹m sure she is a future "American Idol." Already she is singing her ABC’s, "Mary Had a Little Lamb," and the Barney song, "I Love You."=)

I chose such an unusual name because I remembered, from a college class I had taken, the Latin root "Aristos," meaning the best. I then feminized it in the manner of the romance languages.

I¹m writing to you because I¹d like to make another connection between myself and the name Arista.

I'd like a shot at singing for your label.

I believe I’m blessed with the vocal pipes, even though I¹ve never had any real formal training. I’m a baritone. I have sung in church choirs, and I love to sing love ballads, show tunes, church songs, and patriotic songs. I have a good ear for music even though I don't read it.

People tell me it¹s too late for me now, but I don¹t believe it. I’m 44, and most singers don¹t reach their vocal peak until they're in their forties.

I just can’t give up on the dream of becoming a singer, and I’d like the chance to show you what I can do.

Of course, you¹re incredibly busy. I know that, but I recognize your great ear for spotting talent.

Could you spare me five minutes of your time for a telephone audition of my voice?

Your secretary could set up a time for me to call in.

Isn't five minutes of your time worth a multi-million-dollar selling CD, generating a boatload of bucks for your bottom line?

I'd love to get your honest opinion of my ability and potential, based on your many years of experience.

And if I you think I do or even might have the talent, I'd like you to tell me if the plan I have to attain my goal is a good one. I¹m not afraid of working hard to achieve it.

I already have a suggestion for a strategy regarding song selections on the CD as well as marketing suggestions. As a businessman and former morning radio personality at FM 100 KLZI radio, in Phoenix, Arizona in the late 1980s, I have reliable instincts, as well as experience, about what kind of strategies will work.

In fact, I¹m also willing to put my money where my mouth is. I’m willing to bear some of the financial costs of producing the CD and to work with you on the marketing.

I know I have the talent. I also know that many others must have said that to you, but talent is everywhere, as I’m sure you would agree. It just has to be unearthed and recognized.

This is why "American Idol" is such a great show. How else would an unknown young lady from Texas named Kelly Clarkson, or two young men from the south, Ruben Studdard and Clay Aiken, become mega stars almost overnight?

I’m too old for "American Idol," unless they bring out a companion show, "Mid-Life Idol"!

Which is why I’m writing to you. Dreams are not just for the young.

Will you help to keep mine alive?

You might be helping to launch the vocal career of a middle-aged man born, and raised in Portland, Oregon, the youngest of eight children, a fraternal twin, and the son of immigrants, an Italian father and an Irish mother.

I know that what I am asking is unusual and unconventional.

But "American Idol" was also a different concept and that has turned out to be very successful and lucrative. I think my idea of a telephone audition could be too.

I hope very much to hear from your secretary to set up a brief telephone audition.


Steve Mozena

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