|Birth name||Harvey Phillip Spector|
|Also known as||Phil Harvey|
|Born||December 26, 1939|
The Bronx, New York, U.S.
|Origin||Los Angeles, California, U.S.|
|Died||January 16, 2021 81) (aged|
French Camp, California, U.S.
Harvey Phillip Spector (December 26, 1939 –January 16, 2021) was an American record producer, musician, and songwriter known for his innovative recording practices and entrepreneurship in the 1960s, followed decades later by his two trials and conviction for murder in the 2000s. Spector developed the Wall of Sound, a production style that he described as a Wagnerian approach to rock and roll. He is regarded as one of the most influential figures in pop music history and as the first auteur of the music industry for the unprecedented control he had over every phase of the recording process.
Born in the Bronx, Spector moved to Los Angeles as a teenager and began his career in 1958 as a founding member of the Teddy Bears, for which he penned "To Know Him Is to Love Him", a U.S. number-one hit. In 1960, after working as an apprentice to Leiber and Stoller, Spector co-founded Philles Records, and at the age of 21 became the youngest ever U.S. label owner to that point.Dubbed the "First Tycoon of Teen", Spector produced acts such as the Ronettes, the Crystals, and Ike & Tina Turner. He typically collaborated with arranger Jack Nitzsche, engineer Larry Levine, and a de facto house band later known as "the Wrecking Crew". Spector was the decade's most successful record producer.
In the early 1970s, Spector produced the Beatles' album Let It Be (1970) and several solo records by former Beatles John Lennon and George Harrison. By the mid-1970s, Spector had produced eighteen U.S. Top 10 singles for various artists. His chart-toppers included "You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin'" (co-written and produced for the Righteous Brothers, 1964), "The Long and Winding Road" (produced for the Beatles, 1970), and "My Sweet Lord" (co-produced for Harrison, 1970). Following one-off productions for Leonard Cohen ( Death of a Ladies' Man , 1977), Dion DiMucci ( Born to Be with You , 1975), and the Ramones ( End of the Century , 1980), Spector remained largely inactive from the 1980s until the early 2000s amid a lifestyle of seclusion, drug use, and increasingly erratic behavior.
Spector helped establish the role of the studio as an instrument, 's list of the greatest artists in history. In 2009, after spending three decades in semi-retirement, he was convicted for the 2003 murder of the actress Lana Clarkson and sentenced to 19 years to life in prison, where he remained until his death in 2021.the integration of pop art aesthetics into music (art pop), and the genres of art rock and dream pop. His honors include the 1973 Grammy Award for Album of the Year for co-producing Harrison's Concert for Bangladesh (1971), a 1989 induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, and a 1997 induction into the Songwriters Hall of Fame. In 2004, Spector was ranked number 63 on Rolling Stone
Harvey Phillip Spector was born on December 26, 1939,to Benjamin and Bertha Spector, a first-generation immigrant Jewish family in the Bronx, New York City. Benjamin's father arrived in the United States from Ukraine in 1913; he anglicized his name to George Spector in 1927 on his naturalization papers. Bertha's father had also anglicized his name to George Spector when completing his naturalization papers in 1923, and the papers of both men were witnessed by the same person, an Isidore Spector. The similarities in name and background of the grandfathers have led to speculation by Spector that his parents were first cousins.
In April 1949, Spector's father committed suicide; on his gravestone were inscribed the words "Ben Spector. Father. Husband. To Know Him Was To Love Him".In 1953, Spector's mother moved the family to Los Angeles where she found work as a seamstress. Spector attended John Burroughs Junior High School (now John Burroughs Middle School) on Wilshire Boulevard, then in 1954 transferred to Fairfax High School. Having learned to play guitar, Spector performed "Rock Island Line" in a talent show at Fairfax High. Also at Fairfax, he joined a loose-knit community of aspiring musicians, including Lou Adler, Bruce Johnston, Steve Douglas, and Sandy Nelson. Spector formed a group, the Teddy Bears, with Nelson and two other friends, Marshall Leib and Annette Kleinbard.
During this period, record producer Stan Ross—co-owner of Gold Star Studios in Hollywood—began to tutor Spector in record production and exerted a major influence on Spector's production style. In 1958, the Teddy Bears recorded the Spector-penned "Don't You Worry My Little Pet", and then signed a two to three singles recording deal with Era Records, with the promise of more if the singles did well.
At their next session, they recorded another song Spector had written—this one inspired by the epitaph on Spector's father's tombstone. Released on Era's subsidiary label, Dore Records, "To Know Him Is to Love Him" reached number one on Billboard Hot 100 singles chart on December 1, 1958,selling over a million copies by year's end. It was the seventh number-one single on the newly formed chart. Following the success of their debut, the group signed with Imperial Records. Their next single, "I Don't Need You Anymore", reached number 91. They released several more recordings, including an album, The Teddy Bears Sing!, but failed to reach the top 100 in US sales. The group disbanded in 1959.
While recording the Teddy Bears' album, Spector met Lester Sill, a former promotion man who was a mentor to Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller. Sill and his partner, Lee Hazlewood supported Spector's next project, the Spectors Three. In 1960, Sill arranged for Spector to work as an apprentice to Leiber and Stoller in New York. Spector co-wrote the Ben E. King Top 10 hit "Spanish Harlem" with Jerry Leiber and also worked as a session musician, playing the guitar solo on the Drifters' song "On Broadway".
Spector's first true recording artist and project as producer was Ronnie Crawford. Spector's production work during this time included releases by LaVern Baker, Ruth Brown, and Billy Storm, as well as the Top Notes' original recording of "Twist and Shout".Leiber and Stoller recommended Spector to produce Ray Peterson's "Corrine, Corrina", which reached number 9 in January 1961. Later, he produced another major hit for Curtis Lee, "Pretty Little Angel Eyes", which made it to number 7. Returning to Hollywood, Spector agreed to produce one of Sill's acts. After both Liberty Records and Capitol Records turned down the master of "Be My Boy" by the Paris Sisters, Sill formed a new label, Gregmark Records, with Lee Hazlewood, and released it. It reached only number 56, but the follow-up, "I Love How You Love Me", was a hit, reaching number 5.
In late 1961, Spector formed a record company with Sill, who by this time had ended his business partnership with Hazlewood. Philles Records combined the first names of its two founders. Through Hill and Range Publishers, Spector found three groups he wanted to produce: the Ducanes, the Creations, and the Crystals. The first two signed with other companies, but Spector managed to secure the Crystals for his new label. Their first single, "There's No Other (Like My Baby)" was a success, hitting number 20. Their next release, "Uptown", made it to number 13.
Spector continued to work freelance with other artists. In 1962, he produced "Second Hand Love" by Connie Francis, which reached #7. In the early 1960s, he briefly worked with Atlantic Records' R&B artists Ruth Brown and LaVern Baker. Ahmet Ertegun of Atlantic paired Spector with future Broadway star Jean DuShon for "Talk to Me", the B-side of which was "Tired of Trying", written by DuShon.[ citation needed ]
In 1962, Spector briefly took a job as an A&R producer for Liberty Records.It was while working at Liberty that he heard a song written by Gene Pitney, for whom he had produced a number 41 hit, "Every Breath I Take", a year earlier. "He's a Rebel" was due to be released on Liberty by Vikki Carr, but Spector rushed into Gold Star Studios and recorded a cover version using Darlene Love and the Blossoms on lead vocals. The record was released on Philles, attributed to the Crystals, and quickly rose to the top of the charts.
By the time "He's a Rebel" went to number 1, Lester Sill was out of the company, and Spector had Philles all to himself. He created a new act, Bob B. Soxx & the Blue Jeans, featuring Darlene Love, Fanita James (a member of the Blossoms), and Bobby Sheen, a singer he had worked with at Liberty. The group had hits with "Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah" (number 8), "Why Do Lovers Break Each Other's Heart" (number 38), and "Not Too Young to Get Married" (number 63). Spector also released solo material by Darlene Love in 1963. In the same year, he released "Be My Baby" by the Ronettes, which went to number 2.
The first time Spector put the same amount of effort into an LP as he did into 45s was when he utilized the full Philles roster and the Wrecking Crew to make what he felt would become a hit for the 1963 Christmas season. A Christmas Gift for You from Philles Records was released a few days after the assassination of President Kennedy in November 1963.
On September 28, 1963, the Ronettes appeared at the Cow Palace, near San Francisco. Also on the bill were the Righteous Brothers. Spector, who was conducting the band for all the acts, was so impressed with Bill Medley and Bobby Hatfield that he bought their contract from Moonglow Records and signed them to Philles. In early 1965, "You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin'" became the label's second number 1 single. Three more major hits with the duo followed: "Just Once in My Life" (number 9), "Unchained Melody" (number 4, originally the B-side of "Hung on You"), and "Ebb Tide" (number 5). Despite having hits, he lost interest in producing the Righteous Brothers and sold their contract and all their master recordings to Verve Records. However, the sound of the Righteous Brothers' singles was so distinctive that the act chose to replicate it after leaving Spector, notching a second number 1 hit in 1966 with the Bill Medley–produced "(You're My) Soul and Inspiration".
During this period, Spector formed another subsidiary label, Phi-Dan Records, partly created to keep promoter Danny Davis occupied. The label released singles by artists including Betty Willis, the Lovelites, and the Ikettes. None of the recordings on Phi-Dan were produced by Spector.
The recording of "Unchained Melody", credited on some releases as a Spector production although Medley has consistently said he produced it originally as an album track,had a second wave of popularity 25 years after its initial release, when it was featured prominently in the 1990 hit movie Ghost . A re-release of the single re-charted on the Billboard Hot 100, and went to number one on the Adult Contemporary charts. This also put Spector back on the U.S. Top 40 charts for the first time since his last appearance in 1971 with John Lennon's "Imagine", though he did have UK top 40 hits in the interim with the Ramones.
Spector's final signing to Philles was the husband-and-wife team of Ike & Tina Turner in April 1966.Spector considered their single "River Deep – Mountain High" his best work, but it failed to go any higher than number 88 in the United States. The record, which actually featured Tina Turner without Ike Turner, was successful in Britain, reaching number 3.
Spector released another single by Ike & Tina Turner, "I'll Never Need More Than This", while negotiating a deal to move Philles to A&M Records in 1967.The deal did not materialize, and Spector subsequently lost enthusiasm for his label and the recording industry. Already something of a recluse, he withdrew temporarily from the public eye, marrying Veronica "Ronnie" Bennett, lead singer of the Ronettes, in 1968. Spector emerged briefly for a cameo as himself in an episode of I Dream of Jeannie (1967) and as a drug dealer in the film Easy Rider (1969).
In 1969, Spector made a brief return to the music business by signing a production deal with A&M Records. A Ronettes single, "You Came, You Saw, You Conquered" flopped, but Spector returned to the Hot 100 with "Black Pearl", by Sonny Charles and the Checkmates, Ltd., which reached number 13.
In early 1970, Allen Klein, manager of the Beatles, brought Spector to England.After impressing with his production of John Lennon's solo single "Instant Karma!", which went to number 3, Spector was invited by Lennon and George Harrison to take on the task of turning the Beatles' abandoned Let It Be recording sessions into a usable album. He went to work using many of his production techniques, making significant changes to the arrangements and sound of some songs. Released a month after the Beatles' break-up, the album topped the U.S. and UK charts. It also yielded the number 1 U.S. single "The Long and Winding Road". Spector's overdubbing of "The Long and Winding Road" infuriated its composer, Paul McCartney. Several music critics also maligned Spector's work on Let It Be; he later attributed this partly to resentment that an American producer appeared to be "taking over" such a popular English band. Lennon defended Spector, telling Jann Wenner of Rolling Stone : "he was given the shittiest load of badly recorded shit, with a lousy feeling toward it, ever. And he made something out of it. He did a great job."
For Harrison's multiplatinum album All Things Must Pass (number 1, 1970), Spector helped provide a symphonic ambience, 's reviewer lauded the album's sound, calling it "Wagnerian, Brucknerian, the music of mountain tops and vast horizons". The triple LP yielded two major hits: "My Sweet Lord" (number 1) and "What Is Life" (number 10). That same year, Spector co-produced Lennon's Plastic Ono Band (number 6), a stark-sounding album devoid of any Wall of Sound extravagance. Through Harrison, he also produced the debut single by Derek and the Dominos, "Tell the Truth", but the band disliked the sound and had the record withdrawn.although his health issues meant that after recording the basic tracks, he was absent from the project until the mixing stage. Rolling Stone
Spector was made head of A&R for Apple Records.He held the post for only a year, during which he co-produced Lennon's 1971 single "Power to the People" (number 11) and his chart-topping album Imagine . The album's title track hit number 3. With Harrison, Spector co-produced Harrison's "Bangla Desh" (number 23)—rock's first charity single —and wife Ronnie Spector's "Try Some, Buy Some" (number 77). The latter was recorded for Ronnie's intended solo album on Apple Records, a project that stalled due to the same erratic, alcohol-fueled behavior from Spector that had hindered work on All Things Must Pass. Spector was convinced that the Harrison-written single would be a major hit, and its poor commercial performance was one of the biggest disappointments of his career.
That same year Spector oversaw the live recording of the Harrison-organized Concert for Bangladesh shows in New York City, which resulted in the number 1 triple album The Concert for Bangladesh .The album won the "Album of the Year" award at the 1973 Grammys. Despite being recorded live, Spector used up to 44 microphones simultaneously to create his trademark Wall of Sound. Following Harrison's death in 2001, Spector said that the most creative period of his career was when he worked with Lennon and Harrison in the early 1970s, and he believed that this was true of Lennon and Harrison also, despite their achievements with the Beatles.
Lennon retained Spector for the 1971 Christmas single "Happy Xmas (War Is Over)" and the poorly reviewed 1972 album Some Time in New York City (number 48), both collaborations with Yoko Ono. In late 1972, Apple reissued Spector's A Christmas Gift for You from Philles Records (as Phil Spector's Christmas Album),bringing the recordings the commercial success and critical recognition that had originally eluded the 1963 release. Lennon and Ono's "Happy Xmas" single similarly stalled in sales upon its initial release, but later became a fixture on radio station playlists around Christmas.
Harrison and Spector started work on Harrison's Living in the Material World album in October 1972, but Spector's unreliability soon led to Harrison dismissing him from the project.Harrison recalled having to climb down into Spector's central London hotel room from the roof to get him to attend the sessions, and that his co-producer would then need "eighteen cherry brandies before he could get himself down to the studio".
In late 1973, Spector produced the initial recording sessions for what became Lennon's 1975 covers album Rock 'n' Roll (number 6).The sessions were held in Los Angeles, with Lennon allowing Spector free rein as producer for the first time, but were characterized by substance abuse and chaotic arrangements. Amid the party atmosphere, Spector brandished his handguns and at one point fired a shot while Lennon was recording. In December, Lennon and Spector abandoned the collaboration. Since the studio time had been booked by his production company, Spector withheld the tapes until June the following year, when Lennon reimbursed him through Capitol Records.
As the 1970s progressed, Spector became increasingly reclusive. The most probable and significant reason for his withdrawal, according to biographer Dave Thompson, was that in 1974 he was seriously injured when he was thrown through the windshield of his car in a crash in Hollywood. [ citation needed ] Spector was almost killed, and it was only because the attending police officer detected a faint pulse that Spector was not declared dead at the scene. He was admitted to the UCLA Medical Center on the night of March 31, 1974, suffering serious head injuries that required several hours of surgery, with over 300 stitches to his face and more than 400 to the back of his head. His head injuries, Thompson suggests, were the reason that Spector began his habit of wearing outlandish wigs in later years.According to a contemporary report published in the New Musical Express ,
He established the Warner-Spector label with Warner Bros. Records, which undertook new Spector-produced recordings with Cher, Darlene Love, Danny Potter, and Jerri Bo Keno, in addition to several reissues. A similar relationship with Britain's Polydor Records led to the formation of the Phil Spector International label in 1975. When the Cher and Keno singles (the latter's recordings were only issued in Germany) foundered on the charts, Spector released Dion DiMucci's Born to Be with You to little commercial fanfare in 1975; largely produced and recorded by Spector in 1974, it was subsequently disowned by the singer. In the 1990s and 2000s, the album enjoyed a resurgence among the indie rock cognoscenti. [ citation needed ]The majority of Spector's classic Philles recordings had been out of print in the U.S. since the original label's demise, although Spector had released several Philles Records compilations in Britain. Finally, he released an American compilation of his Philles recordings in 1977, which put most of the better-known Spector hits back into circulation after many years.
Spector began to reemerge later in the decade, producing and co-writing a controversial 1977 album by Leonard Cohen, entitled Death of a Ladies' Man . This angered many devout Cohen fans who preferred his stark acoustic sound to the orchestral and choral wall of sound that the album contains. The recording was fraught with difficulty. After Cohen had laid down practice vocal tracks, Spector mixed the album in studio sessions, rather than allowing Cohen to take a role in the mixing, as Cohen had previously done.Cohen remarked that the end result is "grotesque", but also "semi-virtuous"—for many years, he included a reworked version of the track "Memories" in live concerts. Bob Dylan and Allen Ginsberg also participated in the background vocals on "Don't Go Home with Your Hard-On".
Spector also produced the much-publicized Ramones album End of the Century in 1979. As with his work with Leonard Cohen, End of the Century received criticism from Ramones fans who were angered over its radio-friendly sound. However, it contains some of the best known and most successful Ramones singles, such as "Rock 'n' Roll High School", "Do You Remember Rock 'n' Roll Radio?", and their cover of a previously released Spector song for the Ronettes, "Baby, I Love You".Guitarist Johnny Ramone later commented on working with Spector on the recording of the album, "It really worked when he got to a slower song like 'Danny Says'—the production really worked tremendously. For the harder stuff, it didn't work as well."
Rumors circulated for years that Spector had threatened members of the Ramones with a gun during the sessions. Dee Dee Ramone claimed that Spector once pulled a gun on him when he tried to leave a session.Drummer Marky Ramone recalled in 2008, "They [guns] were there but he had a license to carry. He never held us hostage. We could have left at any time".
Spector remained inactive throughout most of the 1980s, 1990s, and early 2000s. In early 1981, shortly after the death of John Lennon, he temporarily re-emerged to co-produce Yoko Ono's Season of Glass.
In 1989, Tina Turner inducted Spector into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as a non-performer.Rolling Stone reported, "Spector hit the stage bopping madly to the strains of the Ronettes' 'Be My Baby,' flanked by three beefy bodyguards who practically elbowed Tina out of the way. He mumbled a few incoherent words about George Bush and the presidential inauguration, and then his bodyguards carried him away again." He was inducted into the Songwriter's Hall of Fame in 1997 and he received the Grammys Trustees Award in 2000.
He attempted to work with Céline Dion on her album Falling into You but fell out with her production team.His last released project was Silence Is Easy by Starsailor, in 2003. He was originally supposed to produce the entire album, but was fired owing to personal and creative differences. One of the two Spector-produced songs on the album, the title track, was a UK top 10 single (the other single being "White Dove").
On February 3, 2003, Spector shot actress Lana Clarkson in the mouth while in his mansion (the Pyrenees Castle) in Alhambra, California. Her body was found slumped in a chair with a single gunshot wound to her mouth. 2003 that Clarkson's death was an "accidental suicide" and that she "kissed the gun". The emergency call from Spector's home, made by Spector's driver, Adriano de Souza, quotes Spector as saying, "I think I've killed somebody". De Souza added that he saw Spector come out of the back door of the house with a gun in his hand.Spector told Esquire in July
Spector remained free on $1 million bail while awaiting trial. In the meantime, Spector produced singer-songwriter Hargo Khalsa's track (known professionally as Hargo) "Crying for John Lennon", which originally appears on Hargo's 2006 album In Your Eyes. On a visit to Spector's mansion for an interview for the Lennon tribute film Strawberry Fields, Hargo played Spector the song and asked him to produce it.
In early 2007, Spector wrote a letter to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame protesting their induction of the Ronettes. He argued that the group were not a proper recording act and did not contribute enough to music to merit an induction."On March 19, Spector's murder trial began. Presiding Judge Larry Paul Fidler allowed the proceedings in Los Angeles Superior Court to be televised. On September 26, Fidler declared a mistrial because of a hung jury (ten to two for conviction).
Released in December 2007, the song "B Boy Baby" by Mutya Buena and Amy Winehouse featured melodic and lyrical passages heavily influenced by "Be My Baby". As a result, Spector was given a songwriting credit on the single. The sections from "Be My Baby" were sung by Winehouse, not sampled from the mono single.Winehouse referenced her admiration of Spector's work and often performed Spector's first hit song, "To Know Him Is to Love Him". That same month, Spector attended the funeral of Ike Turner. In his eulogy, Spector criticized Tina Turner's autobiography—and its subsequent promotion by Oprah Winfrey—as a "badly written" book that "demonized and vilified Ike". Spector commented that "Ike made Tina the jewel she was. When I went to see Ike play at the Cinegrill in the '90s ... there were at least five Tina Turners on the stage performing that night, any one of them could have been Tina Turner."
In mid-April 2008, BBC Two broadcast a special entitled Phil Spector: The agony and the ecstasy, by Vikram Jayanti. It consists of Spector's first screen interview—breaking a long period of media silence. During the conversation, images from the murder court case are juxtaposed with live appearances of his tracks on television programs from the 1960s and 1970s, along with subtitles giving critical interpretations of some of his song production values. While he does not directly try to clear his name, the court case proceedings shown try to give further explanation of the facts surrounding the murder charges leveled against him. He also speaks about the musical instincts that led him to create some of his most enduring hit records, from "You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin'" to "River Deep, Mountain High", as well as Let It Be, along with criticisms he feels he has had to deal with throughout his life.
|Wikinews has related news:|
The retrial of Spector for murder in the second degree began on October 20, 2008, days later, on April 13, the jury returned a guilty verdict. Additionally, Spector was found guilty of using a firearm in the commission of a crime, which added four years to the sentence. He was immediately taken into custody and, on May 29, 2009, was sentenced to 19 years to life in the California state prison system.with Judge Fidler again presiding; the retrial was not televised. Spector was once again represented by attorney Jennifer Lee Barringer. The case went to the jury on March 26, 2009, and 18
Spector's early musical influences included Latin music in general, and Latin percussion in particular.This is perceptible in many if not all of Spector's recordings, from the percussion in many of his hit songs: shakers, güiros (gourds), and maracas in "Be My Baby" and the son montuno in "You've Lost That Lovin' Feeling" (heard clearly in the song's bridge, played by session bassist Carol Kaye, while the same repeating refrain is played on harpsichord by Larry Knechtel).
Spector's trademark during his recording career was the so-called Wall of Sound, a production technique yielding a dense, layered effect that reproduced well on AM radio and jukeboxes. To attain this signature sound, Spector gathered large groups of musicians (playing some instruments not generally used for ensemble playing, such as electric and acoustic guitars) playing orchestrated parts—often doubling and tripling many instruments playing in unison—for a fuller sound. Spector himself called his technique "a Wagnerian approach to rock & roll: little symphonies for the kids".
While Spector directed the overall sound of his recordings, he took a relatively hands-off approach to working with the musicians themselves[ citation needed ] (usually a core group that became known as the Wrecking Crew, including session players such as Hal Blaine, Larry Knechtel, Steve Douglas, Carol Kaye, Roy Caton, Glen Campbell, and Leon Russell), delegating arrangement duties to Jack Nitzsche and having Sonny Bono oversee the performances, viewing these two as his "lieutenants". Spector frequently used songs from songwriters employed at the Brill Building (Trio Music) and at 1650 Broadway (Aldon Music), such as the teams of Ellie Greenwich and Jeff Barry, Barry Mann and Cynthia Weil, and Gerry Goffin and Carole King. He often worked with the songwriters, receiving co-credit and publishing royalties for compositions.
Despite the trend towards multichannel recording, Spector was vehemently opposed to stereo releases, saying that it took control of the record's sound away from the producer in favor of the listener.Sometimes a pair of strings or horns would be double-tracked multiple times to sound like an entire string or horn section. But in the final product the background sometimes could not be distinguished as either horns or strings. Spector also greatly preferred singles to albums, describing LPs as "two hits and ten pieces of junk", reflecting both his commercial methods and those of many other producers at the time.
According to guitarist Stevie Van Zandt of the E Street Band, Spector was a "genius irredeemably conflicted". On Twitter, he wrote: "[Spector] was the ultimate example of the art always being better than the artist ... [He] made some of the greatest records in history based on the salvation of love while remaining incapable of giving or receiving love his whole life."
Spector is often called the first auteur among musical artistsfor acting not only as a producer, but also the creative director, writing or choosing the material, supervising the arrangements, conducting the vocalists and session musicians, and masterminding all phases of the recording process. He helped pave the way for art rock, and helped inspire the emergence of aesthetically oriented genres such as shoegaze and noise music. PopMatters editor John Bergstrom credits the start of dream pop to Spector's collaboration with George Harrison on All Things Must Pass.
His influence has been claimed by performers such as the Beatles, the Beach Boys, [ citation needed ] Bobby Gillespie of Primal Scream and the Jesus and Mary Chain has enthused about Spector, with the song "Just Like Honey" opening with an homage of the famous "Be My Baby" drum intro.and the Velvet Underground alongside latter-day record producers such as Brian Eno and Tony Visconti. Alternative rock performers Cocteau Twins, My Bloody Valentine, and the Jesus and Mary Chain have all cited Spector as an influence. Shoegaze, a British musical movement in the late 1980s to mid-1990s, was heavily influenced by the Wall of Sound. Jason Pierce of Spiritualized has cited Spector as a major influence on his Let It Come Down album.
Many have tried to emulate Spector's methods, and Brian Wilson of the Beach Boys—a fellow adherent of mono recording—considered Spector his main competition as a studio artist. In the 1960s, Wilson thought of Spector as "the single most influential producer. He's timeless. He makes a milestone whenever he goes into the studio."Wilson's fascination with Spector's work has persisted for decades, with many different references to Spector and his work scattered around Wilson's songs with the Beach Boys and even his solo career. Of Spector-related productions, Wilson has been involved with covers of "Be My Baby", "Chapel of Love", "Just Once in My Life", "There's No Other (Like My Baby)", "Then He Kissed Me", "Talk to Me", "Why Don't They Let Us Fall in Love", "You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin'", "Da Doo Ron Ron", "I Can Hear Music", and "This Could Be the Night".
Johnny Franz's mid-1960s productions for Dusty Springfield and the Walker Brothers also employed a layered, symphonic "Wall of Sound" arrangement-and-recording style, heavily influenced by the Spector sound.Another example is the Forum, a studio project of Les Baxter, which produced a minor hit in 1967 with "The River Is Wide". Sonny Bono, a former associate of Spector's, developed a jangly, guitar-laden variation on the Spector sound, which is heard mainly in mid-1960s productions for his then-wife Cher, notably "Bang Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down)".
Bruce Springsteen emulated the Wall of Sound technique in his recording of "Born to Run".In 1973, the British band Wizzard, led by Roy Wood, had three Spector-influenced hits with "See My Baby Jive", "Angel Fingers (A Teen Ballad)", and "I Wish It Could Be Christmas Everyday", the latter becoming a perennial Christmas hit. Other contemporaries influenced by Spector include George Morton, Sonny & Cher, the Rolling Stones, the Four Tops, Mark Wirtz, the Lovin' Spoonful, and the Beatles. Swedish pop group ABBA cited Spector as an influence, and used similar Wall of Sound techniques in their early songs, including "Ring Ring", "Waterloo", and "Dancing Queen".
The Los Angeles-based new wave band Wall of Voodoo takes their name from Spector's Wall of Sound.
Spector's influence is also felt in other areas of the world, especially Japan. City pop musician Eiichi Ohtaki has been influenced by Spector and the Wall of Sound.
Spector's first marriage was in 1963 to Annette Merar, lead vocalist of the Spectors Three, a 1960s pop trio formed and produced by Spector. She is not to be confused with Anette Kleinbard from the Teddy Bears. [ citation needed ]Spector named a record company after Merar, Annette Records.
While still married to Merar, he began having an affair with Veronica Bennett, later known as Ronnie Spector.Bennett was the lead singer of the girl group the Ronettes (another group Spector managed and produced). They married in 1968 and adopted a son, Donté Phillip Spector. As a Christmas present, Spector surprised her by adopting twins Louis Phillip Spector and Gary Phillip Spector.
In her 1990 memoir, Be My Baby: How I Survived Mascara, Miniskirts And Madness , Bennett alleged that Spector had imprisoned her in his California mansion and subjected her to years of psychological torment. According to Bennett, Spector sabotaged her career by forbidding her to perform, and she escaped from the mansion barefoot with the help of her mother in 1972.In their 1974 divorce settlement, she forfeited all future record earnings and surrendered custody of their children. She alleged that this was because Spector threatened to hire a hit man to kill her.
Spector's sons Gary and Donté both stated that their father "kept them captive" as children, and that they were "forced to perform simulated intercourse" with his girlfriend. According to Gary, "I was blindfolded and sexually molested. Dad would say, 'You're going to meet someone,' and it would be a 'learning experience.'"Donté described himself as coming "from a very sick, twisted, dysfunctional family."
In 1982, Spector had twin children with his girlfriend Janis Zavala: Nicole Audrey Spector and Phillip Spector, Jr.. Phillip Jr. died of leukemia in 1991.
On September 1, 2006, Spector, while on bail and awaiting trial, married his third wife Rachelle Short, who was 26 at the time. Spector filed for divorce in April 2016, claiming irreconcilable differences.
Spector testified in a 2005 court deposition that he had been treated for bipolar disorder ("manic depression") for eight years, saying, "No sleep, depression, mood changes, mood swings, hard to live with, hard to concentrate, just hard—a hard time getting through life, I've been called a genius and I think a genius is not there all the time and has borderline insanity."
In the first criminal trial for the Clarkson murder, defense expert and forensic pathologist Dr. Vincent DiMaio, M.D. asserted that Spector might be suffering from Parkinson's disease, stating, "Look at Mr. Spector. He has Parkinson's features. He trembles."
California Department of Corrections photos from 2013 (released in September 2014) show evidence of a progressive deterioration in Spector's health, according to observers.He had been an inmate at the California Health Care Facility (a prison hospital) in Stockton since October 2013. In September 2014, it was reported that Spector had lost his ability to speak, owing to laryngeal papillomatosis.
At 81 years of age, Spector ultimately died in an outside hospital on January 16, 2021, according to the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation.His daughter Nicole attributed his death to complications of COVID-19, with which Spector was diagnosed in December 2020. He would have been eligible for parole in 2024. He was taken to San Joaquin General Hospital in French Camp, California, on December 31, 2020 and intubated in January 2021.
Selected albums as producer (otherwise stated)
Top singles, peak date, and Billboard US rank
Spector is one of a handful of producers to have number one records in three consecutive decades (1950s, 1960s and 1970s). Others in this group include Quincy Jones (1960s, 1970s, and 1980s), George Martin (1960s, 1970s, 1980s, and 1990s), Michael Omartian (1970s, 1980s and 1990s), and Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis (1980s, 1990s, and 2000s).
Awards and nominations
|Year||Nominee / work||Award||Result|
|1972||George Harrison "My Sweet Lord"||Grammy Award for Record of the Year||Nominated|
|1972||George Harrison All Things Must Pass||Grammy Award for Album of the Year||Nominated|
|1973||George Harrison & Friends The Concert for Bangladesh||Grammy Award for Album of the Year||Won|
|1989||Phil Spector||Rock and Roll Hall of Fame||Inducted|
|1997||Phil Spector||Songwriter's Hall of Fame||Inducted|
|2000||Phil Spector||Grammy Trustees Award||Won|
|Rolling Stone||US||Greatest Artists of All Time||2004, updated 2011||64|
|The Washington Times||US||Greatest Record Producers of All Time||2008||2|
The Righteous Brothers are an American musical duo originally formed by Bill Medley and Bobby Hatfield but now comprising Medley and Bucky Heard. Medley formed the group with Hatfield in 1963. They had first performed together in 1962 in the Los Angeles area as part of a five-member group called the Paramours, and adopted the name The Righteous Brothers when they embarked on their recording career as a duo. Their most active recording period was in the 1960s and '70s, and, after several years inactive as a duo, Hatfield and Medley reunited in 1981 and continued to perform until Hatfield's death in 2003. The music they performed is sometimes dubbed "blue-eyed soul".
The Crystals were an American vocal group based in New York City, considered one of the defining acts of the girl group era in the first half of the 1960s. Their 1961–1964 chart hits, including "There's No Other ", "Uptown", "He's Sure the Boy I Love", "He's a Rebel", "Da Doo Ron Ron" and "Then He Kissed Me", featured three successive female lead singers, and were all produced by Phil Spector. The latter three songs were originally ranked #263, #114, and #493, respectively, on Rolling Stone magazine's list of The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time. However, two songs were dropped from the magazine's 2010 update, leaving only "He's a Rebel" at number 267.
The Ronettes were an American girl group from Spanish Harlem, New York. The group consisted of lead singer Veronica Bennett, her older sister Estelle Bennett, and their cousin Nedra Talley. They had sung together since they were teenagers, then known as "The Darling Sisters". Signed first by Colpix Records in 1961, they moved to Phil Spector's Philles Records in March 1963 and changed their name to "The Ronettes".
End of the Century is the fifth studio album by the American punk rock band the Ramones, released on February 4, 1980, through Sire Records. The album was the band's first to be produced by Phil Spector, though he had offered the band his assistance earlier in their career. With Spector fully producing the album, it was the first release that excluded original member Tommy Ramone, who had left the band in 1978 but had produced their previous album Road to Ruin. Spector used more advanced standards of engineering, such as high-quality overdubbing and echo chambers. These painstaking methods caused conflict between the band and Spector, since the Ramones were accustomed to a quicker recording process. Spector emphasized the production value as well, working with a budget of around $200,000, far exceeding their earlier album sessions.
Darlene Wright, known by her stage name, Darlene Love, is an American popular music singer and actress. She was the lead singer of the girl group the Blossoms and she also recorded as a solo artist.
The Wall of Sound is a music production formula developed by American record producer Phil Spector at Gold Star Studios, in the 1960s, with assistance from engineer Larry Levine and the conglomerate of session musicians later known as "the Wrecking Crew". The intention was to exploit the possibilities of studio recording to create an unusually dense orchestral aesthetic that came across well through radios and jukeboxes of the era. Spector explained in 1964: "I was looking for a sound, a sound so strong that if the material was not the greatest, the sound would carry the record. It was a case of augmenting, augmenting. It all fit together like a jigsaw."
Philles Records was an American record label formed in 1961 by Phil Spector and Lester Sill, the label taking its name from a hybrid of their first names. Initially, the label was distributed by Jamie/Guyden in Philadelphia. In 1962, Spector purchased Sill's stock to become sole owner at 21 years of age, America's youngest label chief at the time.
Veronica Spector Greenfield is an American singer who formed the girl group the Ronettes in 1957 with her older sister Estelle Bennett and their cousin Nedra Talley. Bennett fronted the group while record producer Phil Spector produced the majority of their output. The two were married in 1968 and separated in 1972.
"River Deep – Mountain High" is a single by Ike & Tina Turner released on Philles Records in 1966. It was considered by producer Phil Spector to be his best work. Rolling Stone ranked "River Deep – Mountain High" No. 33 on their list of the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time. NME ranked it No. 37 on their list of the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time. The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame added it to the list of the 500 Songs That Shaped Rock and Roll. The song was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame in 1999.
"Be My Baby" is a song by American girl group the Ronettes that was released as a single in August 1963 and later appeared as a track on their 1964 album Presenting the Fabulous Ronettes featuring Veronica. The song was written by Jeff Barry, Ellie Greenwich, and Phil Spector. Phil also produced the Ronettes' recording in what is now considered a quintessential example of his Wall of Sound production formula. It was recorded with a host of session musicians later known as the Wrecking Crew. Ronnie Spector is the only Ronette that appears on the track.
"Baby, I Love You" is a song originally recorded by the Ronettes in 1963 and released on their debut album Presenting the Fabulous Ronettes (1964). The song was written by Jeff Barry, Ellie Greenwich, and Phil Spector, and produced by Spector.
A Christmas Gift for You from Phil Spector is an album of Christmas songs, produced by Phil Spector, and originally released as Philles 4005 in 1963. Spector treated a series of mostly secular Christmas standards to his "Wall of Sound" treatment, and the selections feature the vocal performances of Spector's regular artists during this period. The album peaked at No. 13 on Billboard magazine's special, year-end, weekly Christmas Albums sales chart in December 1963.
"Try Some, Buy Some" is a song written by English rock musician George Harrison that was first released in April 1971 as a single by American singer Ronnie Spector, formerly the lead vocalist of the Ronettes. She recorded it in London along with other Harrison compositions for a planned comeback album on the Beatles' Apple record label. The project was co-produced by Phil Spector, Ronnie's husband at the time, but abandoned following recording sessions that were hampered by his erratic behaviour. The only official release from the sessions, the single achieved minimal commercial success, peaking at number 77 on the US Billboard Hot 100 and number 63 on Canada's RPM Top 100. Harrison later added his own vocal onto a new mix of the instrumental track and included the song on his 1973 album Living in the Material World.
Back to Mono (1958–1969) is a box set compilation of the recorded work of record producer Phil Spector, through the 1960s, released in 1991 by ABKCO as #7118-2. The first track, "To Know Him Is to Love Him," released in 1958, features Spector performing as part of the group the Teddy Bears. Initially a vinyl album-sized package, the box contained a booklet with photographs, complete song lyrics, discographical information, and a reproduction of the essay on Spector by Tom Wolfe, "The First Tycoon of Teen." The package also contained a small, round, red "Back to Mono" pin.
Lester Sill was an American record label executive, best remembered as Phil Spector's partner in Philles Records, and also as the head of both Colpix Records and the later Colgems Records. His three sons are music supervisors in the film and TV businesses: Joel Sill, Greg Sill and Lonnie Sill. His stepson Chuck Kaye is a longtime music publishing executive.
"You" is a song by English musician George Harrison, released as the opening track of his 1975 album Extra Texture . It was also the album's lead single, becoming a top 20 hit in America and reaching number 9 in Canada. A 45-second instrumental portion of the song, titled "A Bit More of You", appears on Extra Texture also, opening side two of the original LP format. Harrison wrote "You" in 1970 as a song for Ronnie Spector, formerly of the Ronettes, and wife of Harrison's All Things Must Pass co-producer Phil Spector. The composition reflects Harrison's admiration for 1960s American soul/R&B, particularly Motown.
Presenting the Fabulous Ronettes Featuring Veronica is the only studio album of American girl group the Ronettes, released in 1964. Comprising numerous singles produced by Phil Spector since the previous year, it peaked at #96 on the Billboard 200 chart. Issued singles included "Be My Baby", "Walking in the Rain", "Baby, I Love You", "Do I Love You?", and "(The Best Part Of) Breakin' Up". The track "So Young" had been released as a single credited to Veronica, although the other Ronettes, Estelle Bennett and Nedra Talley, appear on the record.
"(The Best Part of) Breaking Up" is a song written by Phil Spector, Pete Andreoli and Vince Poncia. It was first recorded by The Ronettes, produced by Phil Spector and arranged by Jack Nitzsche with Ronnie Spector on lead vocals and with backing vocals by Nedra Talley and Estelle Bennett, ably abetted by Darlene Love and the Blossoms, Bobby Sheen, and Sonny & Cher. The song was released in April 1964, the year widely recognized as the group's most successful year, and proved to be the group's third consecutive top forty hit in the US. The single peaked at number 39 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 and number 43 on the UK Singles Chart.
This article is a discography for American singing group The Ronettes. The Ronettes began recording with Colpix Records in 1961 and recorded eleven songs for Colpix. In March 1963, the group moved to Phil Spector's Philles Records, where they achieved their biggest success.
"I'll Still Love You" is a song written by English rock musician George Harrison and first released in 1976 by his former Beatles bandmate Ringo Starr. Produced by Arif Mardin, the track appeared on Starr's debut album for Atlantic Records and Polydor, Ringo's Rotogravure. The composition had a long recording history before then, having been written in 1970 as "Whenever", after which it was copyrighted with the title "When Every Song Is Sung".
But while Spector made his mark as a revolutionary music producer, the stories of him waving guns at recording artists and being convicted of murder overshadowed his artistry.
...Before he was transferred to a hospital, Spector had been an inmate at the California Health Care Facility in Stockton
|Wikiquote has quotations related to: Phil Spector|