Clif was instrumental in developing perhaps the biggest breakout artist of 2003, Avril Lavigne.
Clif was instrumental in developing perhaps the biggest breakout artist of 2003, Avril Lavigne. Being among the first writer/producers to work with Avril, Clif’s writing and production style became the benchmark for the album. Clif co-wrote and produced the fourth, much edgier, Avril Lavigne single “Losing Grip,” as well as 5 other tracks from her multi-platinum debut “Let Go.”
“For six months, the label set up Lavigne with two co-writers, who worked with her upon Arista’s instructions. Reid expected Lavigne to record folk songs because she auditioned to them in a ‘balladic, ‘new country” type. However, the collective failed to click ‘with a girl who’d just discovered guitar-based rock’. For a year, nothing was working for Lavigne and was on the verge of getting dropped off Arista. The management pitched her songs written by other songwriters, but she declined, insisting she wanted to write songs herself. Lavigne relocated to Los Angeles, where she collaborated with songwriter-producer Clif Magness, who gave her ample creative control in the writing process. Lavigne and Magness wrote ‘Losing Grip’ and ‘Unwanted’, songs that she deemed reflective of her vision for the entire album.” Let Go (Avril Lavigne album). In Wikipedia. Retrieved June 14, 2014, from Wikipedia.
“Losing Grip” showed a much more rock side of the album and was Avril’s personal favorite track.
“Losing Grip” showed a much more rock side of the album and was Avril’s personal favorite track. Her performance of the song at the Juno Awards was said to be one of the highlights of the show. “Losing Grip” got more than 2100 spins a week and topped at #29 on the Top Forty chart and #14 on MTV’s rotation. He finished the project with six productions and five co-writes on the multi-platinum debut entitled, “LET GO.”
“‘Mobile’ should be her next completely inescapable hit: As Lavigne wails over crashing waves of acoustic and electric guitars, her big voice occasionally turns sideways in a drawl, a casual hint that she may actually be, of all things, a fine country singer in the making. Truth be told, Lavigne has a great voice, a good shtick and a qualified staff of hitmakers. We should all just learn to get along with her, because she’s gonna be with us for a little while.” Let Go (Avril Lavigne album). By Pat Blashill. July 2, 2002, from Rolling Stone.
With the success of Avril Lavigne, Clif continued to break new ground writing and producing a whole new group of young superstars at the time including Cherie Amore, Jessica Simpson, Charlotte Martin, O-Town and a heartfelt single for Rachel Loy (of Mass Ave), entitled “The Same Man (for Matthew). Also, Kelly Clarkson’s #1 album debut “Thankful” features 2 productions by Clif. Additionally, Clif co-wrote and produced “Hear Me” and “I Hate Myself For Losing You” from Kelly Clarkson’s 8x Platinum 2nd album, “Breakaway”. At the same time, Clif co-wrote the first single “Lights Out,” and five other songs with Lisa Marie Presley from her debut album “To Whom It May Concern.” Clif also produced 5 songs for Clay Aiken’s debut multi-platinum album, “The Measure Of A Man” including the #1 hit, “Solitaire”.
In 1990 Clif took home a Grammy for the song “The Places You Find Love” from Quincy Jones’ critically acclaimed album “Back On The Block.”
Clif has also worked with artists such as Marie Digby, Avid, Andreya Triana, Tori Vasquez, Cindy Alma, Alissa Beyer, Lisa Donnelly, Days Difference, Say Chance, Ill Scarlett, Ivy Lies, Cristina Grimmie, Andrea Rosario, Renee Cassar, Caroline Sunshine, Cider Sky, Sara Skinner, Brynn Elliott and Michaela Baranov.