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Phoebe's character has many songs she performs throughout the series. Was there a single person dedicated to writing songs for the character to perform? Was Lisa Kudrow improvising?

Who wrote the songs Phoebe performs on Friends?

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Do you want actual writer or the person acting as writer for songs? – Somnath Muluk Jan 27 '13 at 3:22
this has citations for 2 songs – Dan Jan 27 '13 at 3:52
Seems a little harsh to denote this as a list question. stevve is asking a reasonable thing here IMHO. – iandotkelly Jan 28 '13 at 3:40
There are at least 47 songs, which makes this a potential list question (in the sense that there might be multiple correct partial answers). A Community Wiki answer might be the solution. – Oliver_C Jan 28 '13 at 10:51
@oliver_c it's not really a list question. A list question means that more than a handful of solutions are plausable, such as "what's the best way to do x", given any x there could be quite a few ways to "best" do it. Whereas this particular question does have a clear answer, it's just potentially a long one if more than one or two people worked on writing the songs. – DForck42 Feb 7 '13 at 15:14
up vote 11 down vote accepted

The lyrics are most likely written by the team of screenwriters that were involved in the show, but that's just my guess. I don't think you'll be able to get a definite answer without actually asking someone on the show since there doesn't seem to be any information about this online, and I can't recall hearing, or seeing anything about it on the "behind the scenes" footage or in the interviews that comes with the DVD box set. Though, the fact that most songs are about or at least related to things that happens in the episodes in which they're performed strengthens this theory.

What is mentioned in the DVD extras, though, is that the melodies and the chords are all, or at least partly made up by Lisa Kudrow.


Having done some digging, I managed to find these two Friends CDs:

Album: Friends
Snowman/Ashes/Dead Mother medley

Lyrics by Adam Chase (Friends Producer/Writer), Ira Ungerleider (Friends Producer/Writer)
Music by Lisa Kudrow

Album: Friends - Again
Smelly Cat

Written by Adam Chase, Betsy Borns (Friends Writer), Chrissy Hynde, Lisa Kudrow

The song credits posted above proves that the producers/writers of Friends were the ones writing Phoebe Buffay's songs, with the exception of "Smelly Cat" which Lisa Kudrow and Chrissy Hynde (the frontwoman of The Pretenders) seems to have been at least partly responsible for.

Sure, these are only two songs, but I see no reason why the rest would be any different.

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While I acknowledge that your answer has received the most upvotes, I don't see it as the answer to my question. "Most likely" and "theory" point to your answer being a deduction. While it may be the best deduction we have right now, it does not definitively answer the question, which is why I haven't accepted it. I hope you understand where I'm coming from. Also: I upvoted your answer a long time ago. :) – stevvve Jul 1 '13 at 21:18
@stevvve Fair enough :) Will see if I can find a definite answer somewhere, and then update mine if I do. Thanks for the upvote! – Tom Jul 1 '13 at 21:56
@stevvve Updated with some actual song credits that I managed to find! :) – Tom Jul 2 '13 at 11:47
AWESOME. You get the check for that. Great work! – stevvve Jul 2 '13 at 15:32

It must have been the scriptwriter. The songs are witty & funny. It is less likely that some naive person would have written them. In my opinion, Pheobe's songs were very smartly written, so it is more likely that a professional i.e. the scriptwriter must have wrote them.

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I am not sure and may be wrong.... But I think it was Lisa Kudrow herself writing the songs she sang in FRIENDS.

The Reason I say so.... is coz i read some where a long time back that the characters dressed in whatever the want to and the director gave them a lot of space..

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Can you provide the proof of your statement. – Ankit Sharma Feb 26 '13 at 9:24
If could then I wouldn't have written and I qoute "I am not Sure" But Regarding the second statement I think I saw it on OPRAH. – Nishant Feb 26 '13 at 9:53
Then its looks like i think answer, which doenot suits to this question. – Ankit Sharma Feb 26 '13 at 10:19
To the above answer posted by Ankit.... none of the songs were clever or witty . All the songs just proved one point that Phoebe's song didn't made any sense and she was a lousy singer and writer. – Nishant Feb 26 '13 at 10:50
But it doesn't prove the she write her own song. Some other actor or crew member can also write the songs. – Ankit Sharma Feb 26 '13 at 10:55

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