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Famous and problematic producer Phil Spector dies at the age of 81

Phil Spector

Classic Rock

Famous and problematic producer Phil Spector dies at the age of 81

The famous and problematic producer Phil Spector died at the age of 81 of natural causes, while serving a 19-to-life sentence for the 2003 murder of actress Lana Clarkson. He was convicted back in 2009.


Spector was famous for creating the “wall of sound” technique. Also for being the producer of famous musicians like The Ronettes, The Beatles, George Harrison, John Lennon, The Ramones, Leonard Cohen, Dion DiMucci and more.

According to Rolling Stone magazine, Spector’s death was confirmed by the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation: “California Health Care Facility inmate Phillip Spector was pronounced deceased of natural causes at 6:35 p.m. on Saturday, January 16, 2021, at an outside hospital. His official cause of death will be determined by the medical examiner in the San Joaquin County Sheriff’s Office.”

The 1965 song “You’ve Lost That Lovin ‘Feeling”, produced and co-written by Spector for the Righteous Brothers, is listed by BMI as the song that most often played on radio in the United States in the 20th century. In 2004, Rolling Stone magazine ranked Phil Spector 63rd on its list of “Greatest Artists of All Time


Back in 2003, the police was called to Spector’s mansion in Alhambra, California, where actress Lana Clarkson had been shot dead. The producer was arrested and charged with second-degree murder. He kept out of the public eye for years. During a televised trial, he presented a startling image with his enormous, unkempt nimbus of curly hair. The jury was deadlocked, and Spector underwent a second murder trial. Which resulted in a conviction. In 2009, Spector was sentenced to 19 years to life in prison.

Albums produced

1959: The Teddy Bears Sing – The Teddy Bears
1962: Twist Uptown – The Crystals
1963: He’s a Rebel – The Crystals
1963: Zip-A Dee-Doo-Dah – Bob B. Soxx and the Blue Jeans
1963: A Christmas Gift for You from Philles Records – Various Artists
1964: Presenting the Fabulous Ronettes Featuring Veronica – The Ronettes
1966: River Deep – Mountain High – Ike & Tina Turner
1969: Love Is All We Have to Give – Sonny Charles and the Checkmates, Ltd.
1970: Let It Be – The Beatles
All Things Must Pass (co-producer) – George Harrison
Plastic Ono Band (co-producer) – John Lennon and the Plastic Ono Band

After 1970

1971: Imagine (co-producer) – John Lennon and the Plastic Ono Band with the Flux Fiddlers
1971: The Concert for Bangladesh (co-producer) – George Harrison and friends
1972: Some Time in New York City (co-producer) – John Lennon and Yoko Ono with Elephant’s Memory plus Invisible Strings
1973: Living in the Material World (co-producer) – George Harrison
1975: Rock ‘n’ Roll (co-producer) – John Lennon
1975: Born to Be with You – Dion
1977: Death of a Ladies’ Man – Leonard Cohen
1980: End of the Century – Ramones
1981: Season of Glass (co-producer) – Yoko Ono
1986: Menlove Ave. (co-producer) – John Lennon
1991: Back to Mono (1958–1969) (box set compilation) – Various Artists
2003: Silence Is Easy (co-producer) – Starsailor

I'm a Brazilian journalist who always loved Classic Rock and Heavy Metal music. That passion inspired me to create Rock and Roll Garage over 6 years ago. Music has always been a part of my life, helping me through tough times and being a support to celebrate the good ones. When I became a journalist, I knew I wanted to write about my passions. After graduating in journalism from the Pontifical Catholic University of Minas Gerais, I pursued a postgraduate degree in digital communication at the same institution. The studies and experience in the field helped me improve the website and always bring the best of classic rock to the world! MTB: 0021377/MG

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