Posts tagged ‘Record Producer’

October 29, 2013


Patrice Wilson is a Nigerian singer and songwriter who goes by the stage names Pato and Fat Usher. He got his start in music as a backup singer with Malian-Slovak pop star Ibrahim Maiga (and learned to speak fluent Slovak while touring Eastern Europe). 

Wilson moved to the US in 2001, where he took his flavor of Nigerian music, along with eastern Europe pop, and combined it with hip-hop. In 2010 he co-founded ARK Music Factory in partnership with Clarence Jey, an Australian record producer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist musician. Jey left the following year, with Wilson remaining the CEO of the company. He co-authored and co-produced alongside Jey the song ‘Friday’ sung by Rebecca Black.

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March 20, 2012

Phil Spector

back to mono

Phil Spector (b. 1939) is an American musician (piano, guitar), songwriter and record producer. He was co-owner of Philles Records (with then-business partner Lester Sill), and later owner of Phil Spector Records. In 2009 he was found guilty of second degree murder. Spector’s signature style was called the Wall of Sound. He used large amounts of echo, doubling and multiplying of musical instruments and the parts to be played, and overdubbing of recorded parts. The built-up effect gave his records an operatic, theatrical quality. The music sounded ‘bigger than life.’

The effect carried over especially well on AM radio, which was how most music was broadcast in the 1950s and 1960s. Spector said the Wall of Sound made ‘…little symphonies for kids…’ The recording artists who worked with Spector over the years included The Crystals (‘Then He Kissed Me’), The Ronettes (‘Be My Baby’), The Righteous Brothers (‘You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feelin’,’ Gene Pitney (‘Every Breath I Take’), Darlene Love (‘(Today I Met) The Boy I’m Gonna Marry’), and Tina Turner (‘River Deep, Mountain High’). Sonny Bono and Cher were among his backup singers. He married Veronica (Ronnie) Bennett of the Ronettes, who took the name Ronnie Spector.

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January 14, 2012

Larry Levan

larry levann by keith haring

Larry Levan (1954 – 1992) was a DJ best known for his decade-long residency at the New York City night club Paradise Garage, which has been described as the prototype of the modern dance club. He developed a cult following who referred to his sets as ‘Saturday Mass.’ Influential US DJ François Kevorkian credits Levan with introducing the dub aesthetic into dance music. Along with Kevorkian, Levan experimented with drum machines and synthesizers in his productions and live sets, ushering in an electronic, post-disco sound that presaged the ascendence of house music.

Born, Lawrence Philpot, Levan was openly gay and got his start alongside DJ Frankie Knuckles at the Continental Baths, as a replacement for the DJ from The Gallery, Nicky Siano. Levan’s DJing style was influenced by Siano’s eclectic style, and by The Loft’s David Mancuso, who briefly dated Levan in the early 1970s. As Knuckles was still trying to make his way in the New York club scene, Levan became a popular attraction perhaps due to his ‘diva persona,’ which he developed in the city’s notoriously competitive black drag ‘houses.’

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July 29, 2011

Berry Gordy


berry gordy

Berry Gordy, Jr. (b. 1929) is an American record producer, and the founder of the Motown record label, which played an important role in the racial integration of popular music. Motown achieved a crossover success. In the 1960s, Motown and its soul-based subsidiaries were the most successful proponents of what came to be known as The Motown Sound, a style of soul music with a distinct pop influence.

The Motown Sound typically used tambourines to accent the back beat, prominent and often melodic electric bass-guitar lines, distinctive melodic and chord structures, and a call-and-response singing style that originated in gospel music. Pop production techniques such as the use of orchestral string sections, charted horn sections, and carefully arranged background vocals were also used. Complex arrangements and elaborate, melismatic vocal riffs were avoided. Motown producers believed steadfastly in the ‘KISS principle’ (keep it simple, stupid).

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December 6, 2010

Rick Rubin

rick rubin

Rick Rubin (b. 1963) is an American record producer and the co-president of Columbia Records. Rubin was the original DJ of the Beastie Boys, and co-founder of Def Jam Records with Russell Simmons. He helped popularize a fusion of hip hop and heavy metal music, and he has worked extensively with hard rock groups, notably Linkin Park, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Metallica, Slipknot, System of a Down, and Rage Against the Machine, but has produced for artists of all different genres including Shakira, Run-D.M.C., The Dixie Chicks, U2, and Green Day.

Rubin’s biggest trademark as a producer has been a ‘stripped-down’ sound, which involves eliminating production elements such as string sections, backup vocals, and reverb, and instead having naked vocals and bare instrumentation.

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October 26, 2010

Dr. Luke

dr luke

Lukasz Gottwald, better known as Dr. Luke, is an American songwriter, record producer, and remixer. Luke performed with the Saturday Night Live Band band for ten seasons until 2007. He has co-written and co-produced a string of commercially successful songs including Taio Cruz’s ‘Dynamite,’ Kelly Clarkson’s ‘Since U Been Gone,’ Pink’s ‘U + Ur Hand,’ Avril Lavigne’s ‘Girlfriend,’ Katy Perry’s ‘I Kissed a Girl,’ Britney Spears’ ‘Circus,’ Miley Cyrus’s ‘Party in the U.S.A.,’ and Ke$ha’s ‘Tik Tok.’

He was named one of the top ten producers of the decade by Billboard in 2009 and the Songwriter of the Year at the 2010 ASCAP Pop Music Awards. He is a frequent collaborator with Swedish music producer and songwriter Martin Karl Sandberg, aka Max Martin.