- Billy Joe Crawford
May 16, 1982 (age 39)
- Singer, Actor, Singer-songwriter, Record producer, Presenter, Dancer
- Marie Courchinoux
- Mayette Ledesma, Jack Crawford
Billy Joe Crawford (born May 16, 1982) is a Filipino-American recording artist, singer-songwriter, actor and TV host.
Crawford has lived in New York City, USA, and in Paris for five years and for one year in London. He also lived in Los Angeles in 2007. In 2008, he went to Manila to host Pinoy Dream Academy Überture. He was also the host of Miss Earth 2008. Crawford is multilingual; his first language is Tagalog, his second is English and he is conversational in French.
He is currently a talent of ABS-CBN, a Philippine television network, and was seen in Pilipinas Got Talent as one of the two main hosts together with Luis Manzano.
William Ledesma Crawford was born in Manila, Philippines, to a Filipina mother named Mayette Ledesma and an American father named Jack Crawford. He has two half-brothers. Crawford was discovered at an early age of 3 years, singing at a bowling alley that his mother visited often. He became a series regular on an afternoon GMA Network television show called That's Entertainment under the name Billy Joe. He attended International Christian Academy in the Philippines until his departure for the US when he was 11 and balanced both his professional acting and academic repertory obligations. He acted in a few movies before he moved to the United States where he started a music career, performing mostly in the United Kingdom and France, as well as in Asia. His pre-career started in Dallas, Texas, USA, where he lived and performed his singing and then moved to New York City. During this time, he legally changed his name to Billy Crawford. He first went to Professional Children's School and then to Professional Performing Arts School in New York City with many other famous professional children, such as Lee Thompson Young, Mandy Moore and Nina Sky. In 1996, he danced with Michael Jackson onstage when he was 14 years old as one of Michael's back-up dancers at the 1995 MTV Video Music Awards.
Music & TV career
Crawford had major chart success in France and other parts of Europe, but did not repeat this success in the United Kingdom and the United States, although his single "You Didn't Expect That" did make the lower reaches of the UK Top 40, peaking at number 35. He also contributed a remix of the Pokémon anime theme song for Pokémon: The First Movie. Crawford also appeared at a popular Filipino American event called "Fiesta Filipina" in 2001 held in San Francisco, California, and American people have become more aware of his name.
Crawford's album Big City was released in 2004 in France and Asia only. The single "Bright Lights" was unable to break into the any Top 10 charts. The second single "Steamy Nights" produced by KOVAS - Ghetto Beat, fared better making Top 40, and was featured on 7 compilations across Europe and was the first single in Germany. Crawford's music video for "Steamy Nights" was shot in Los Angeles, California, and was produced with the same people who worked on the Destiny's Child single "Lose My Breath". Actress Jenna Dewan, who was one of the main characters in the popular 2006 film Step Up, was featured as Crawford's dance partner.
Another song from the album, "Candy Store" was leaked from the album and received airplay on London radio. Thought to be a duet with Ginuwine, it is featured on the Big City album. After doing the first ever online reality show "The MSN Dance Show", his third single from the album, "3 Wishes," was canceled by his label. Crawford felt it was time for something new and decided not to re-sign his contract with V2 records. He is writing and producing songs for other artists.
In 2006, Crawford began recording a new album which was expected to be released in 2007. In 2006, he toured during the summer with the L5 in France and in November he was scheduled to return to his home country to shoot a film.
In 2007, he returned to the Philippines for a new dance reality show M.O.V.E for GMA Network. The show searched for six back-up dancers for his Araneta Coliseum concert. After the successful concert, he returned to the United States to work on projects and fulfill several commitments.
In 2008, upon his return to the Philippines, Crawford decided to sign with ABS-CBN as an exclusive artist instead of returning to GMA. He became a regular on the Sunday variety show ASAP and later hosted the 2nd season of "Pinoy Dream Academy", a reality search that involves the skill of singing.
In 2009, Billy returned to acting via Your Song Presents with his partner and fellow singer Nikki Gil. He also released his fifth studio album Groove in the Philippines as well as worldwide digital services later that year. He also hosted a former talent show, Showtime.
In 2010, he also hosted Pilipinas Got Talent with his fellow co-host Luis Manzano and both of them won as Best Talent Search Program Hosts in the recent 24th PMPC Star Awards for TV.
Since 2012, Billy has been hosting with Vhong Navarro and other It's Showtime hosts in a weekday variety comedy show It's Showtime.
Crawford did not receive significant media attention after the Big City Tour 2005, mostly being mentioned in a few magazines for his break-up with Lorie (French singer and later Dancing with the Stars 3 celebrity contestant.), and began a new relationship with Marie Courchinoux (also known as Maryss from Paris). They got married but divorced after 5 years. Billy was in a relationship with Filipino singer-actress Nikki Gil, they met while doing the second season of Pinoy Dream Academy in 2008 which they are both hosting at that time. The couple then decided to end their almost five year relationship in July 2013.
Amidst his blooming career in the international music scene, most especially in Europe, he decided to reside in the Philippines. His stay in the Philippines for his Move TV show gave Billy friendly connections with many other Filipino actors and singers such as Gary Valenciano, as well as with many other famous actors and singers.
Crawford completed in 2008 his studio engineering course at New York University in New York, United States but did not receive his degree yet.