Phil Spector Biography
Phillip Spector (December 26, 1939 – January 16, 2021) was an American musician, songwriter and record producer.
Coming to prominence in the early 1960s, Spector became one of the most distinctive producers in the history of popular music. He was hailed in his heyday by Tom Wolfe as the “First Tycoon of Teen.” The originator of the famous “Wall of Sound” production technique, Spector was a pioneer of the 1960s’ girl group sound and clocked in over twenty-five Top 40 hits between 1960 and 1965. In later years he worked with various artists, including Ike and Tina Turner, The Beatles, and Ramones with similar success. In 1989, Spector was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as a non-performer.
Phil Spector produced records for:
The Ronettes: “Be My Baby”; “Baby I Love You”; “Walking In The Rain”; and others
The Crystals: “He’s A Rebel”; “He’s Sure the Boy I Love”; “Uptown”; “There’s No Other Like My Baby”; “Da Doo Ron Ron”; “Then He Kissed Me”; and others
Ike and Tina Turner: “River Deep-Mountain High”; and others
Curtis Lee: “Pretty Little Angel Eyes”; “Under The Moon Of Love”; and others
The Paris Sisters: “I Love How You Love Me”
Ray Peterson: “Corrine, Corrina”
Darlene Love: “Wait ‘Til My Bobby Gets Home”; “Today I Met The Boy I’m Gonna Marry”; and others
Ben E. King: “Spanish Harlem”; and others
Bob B. Soxx And The Blue Jeans: “Zip A Dee Doo Dah”; and others
The Teddy Bears: “To Know Him Is To Love Him”
The Beatles: Album “Let It Be”
George Harrison: LP “All Things Must Pass”, “My Sweet Lord”
Ringo Starr: “It Don’t Come Easy”
John Lennon: “Give Peace A Chance”; “Instant Karma”; LP and Single “Imagine”, and all other post-Beatle work
Phil also produced the “Concert for Bangladesh” – the first ever artists-for-charity work, which was also the first ever “boxed-set,” a term used for the first time in the record industry, which included, but not limited to, the following artists:
As a songwriter Phil Spector has written / co-written: Spanish Harlem, You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feeling, Be My Baby, Chapel Of Love, Then He Kissed Me, Da Doo Ron Ron, Baby I Love You, Walking In The Rain, River Deep, Mountain High, I Can Hear Music, Just Once In My Life, and To Know Him Is To Love Him (Spector wrote, produced, and performed with The Teddy Bears, for which he was a member).
Phil was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1989 as a non-performer. He won a Grammy Award for producing “The Concert For Bangladesh” album. He also won an Academy Award for producing the soundtrack album for The Beatles film, “Let It Be.”
In 1989 Spector won the BMI Country Song of the Year award for his composition “To Know Him Is To Love Him” recorded by Dolly Parton, Emmylou Harris, and Linda Ronstadt performing under their collective group name “Trio.”
Phil is listed in every Marquis edition of “Who’s Who” in every category, i.e.; “Who’s Who In The World”, etc., and has been for over twenty years.
Over the course of his career, Phil has been the subject of many cover story features including magazines such as Time and Rolling Stone, and has been a guest at the White House twice. Phil was also the subject of Tom Wolfe’s Pulitzer Prize winning piece, “Phil Spector, The First Tycoon Of Teen.”
In addition to the work by Mr. Wolfe, Phil has been the subject of four film documentaries, all of which have been done without his permission. Each of the documentaries are over an hour long; one of the four was made by the David Wolper Organization and another by the BBC. Phil is the only subject in all four documentaries.
There are known to be seven unauthorized books written about Phil, with another four published in Europe, also unauthorized and without his participation.
Phil was inducted into the City of Philadelphia Hall Of Fame in 1993, and received their prestigious “Philadelphia Award.” He was also inducted into the TEC Hall Of Fame, and received their “Lifetime Achievement Award” in 1995. It was presented to him by his dear friend Paul Shaffer, the Musical Director, and Orchestra leader, for the David Letterman Late Night TV show. The TEC Awards are sponsored by Mix Magazine, generally considered the Bible of the Recording Studios.
There are several other write-ups about Phil’s life work available through Rolling Stone and SpectroPop.
“The world could use a new Phil Spector record, that’s for sure.”- Bob Dylan: Rolling Stone Nov/Dec 1987