Rupert Holmes was born in the UK where his father was serving in the USAF. However, Holmes was brought up in New York where he attended the Manhattan School Of Music before starting out as a songwriter. He also performed on sessions for the Cuff Links and arranged songs for Gene Pitney, the Drifters and the Platters. His first success was the song "Timothy", recorded by the Buoys and a US hit in 1971. The song, about hungry, trapped pot-holers devouring one of their number, also featured Holmes on piano. He wrote next for the Partridge Family and the Drifters before launching his own singing career with an album in 1974.