The songwriting credits for the new Apple TV Plus animated series “Central Park” include a veritable who’s who of American female singer-songwriters stepping out of tune-land and into toon-land as guest writers, with Sara Bareilles, Aimee Mann, Fiona Apple, Cyndi Lauper and Meghan Trainor among those represented.
None of their voices will be heard on the show— that’s left to a voice cast that includes executive producer Josh Gad, Leslie Odom, Jr., Kristen Bell, Kathryn Hahn, Tituss Burgess, Daveed Diggs and Stanley Tucci — but the list of talent the show attracted just as songwriters is bound to draw pop fans’ interest.
Other top-rank names contributing to the songwriting come from the worlds of theater, film and TV composing, including Alan Menken and Tony nominee Glenn Slater. The bulk of the songs, however, comes from the show’s core writers, Kate Anderson & Elyssa Samsel (“Olaf’s Frozen Adventure”) and Brent Knopf (“Bob’s Burgers”). Each episode will include 3-6 original songs, per Apple.
With the show premiering today (May 29), a soundtrack for the first two episodes has been released to streaming services. It includes Bareilles’ contribution from episode 2, titled “Weirdos Make Great Superheroes.”
Lauper co-wrote two songs for the fourth episode, “Garage Ballet” and “Rats.” Mann’s solo composition “Big Deal” appears in the seventh episode. Trainor wrote “I’m in a Perfect Relationship” for episode 8. The tenth episode features a song co-written by Apple with David Lucky, “New York Doesn’t Like Your Face.”
Other contributors include Anthony Hamilton, Darren Criss, social activist Rafael Casal and actor-rapper Utkarsh Ambudkar.
The show is nearly a sequel to “Bob’s Burgers,” if only in the list of talent involved. That show’s Emmy-winning Loren Bouchard is on board as co-creator, writer and executive producer, rejoined by fellow Emmy winner Nora Smith. Two core members of the music team are also “Bob’s Burgers” alumni, music supervisor Patrick Dacey and music editor Tim Dacey. Completing the music team is executive music producer Frank Ciampi (“Crazy Ex-Girlfriend,” “Alien News Desk”).