George Martin, the Fifth Beatle, who changed the course of pop history

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By Serge K | March 9, 2016 6:17 pm

The music came from the Beatles, but without George Martin it will nether came to us. He guided the Beatles to global fame.

Sir George Martin, the music producer whose collaboration with the Beatles helped redraw the boundaries of popular music, died 8 March 2016, according to his management company. He was 90.

George Martin’s willingness to step outside the boundaries of what was acceptable that helped make the Beatles unique.

Sir George Martin changed the course of pop history

Sir George Martin changed the course of pop history

George Martin was a man who got incredibly lucky the day he met the Beatles. It’s a theory that was sometimes posited by the Beatles themselves, in their less gracious moments.

 George Martin cut at the cutting edge of 60s pop – with his hair oil and his tie and his Royal Navy background – he was every bit as inquisitive, brave and mischievous as they were when it came to music. He was bold enough to encourage their belief they should write their own singles in an age when almost no other artist did.

It was Martin who found ways of making the group’s experiments work, whether it was feedback on “I Feel Fine,” the use of a sitar on “Norwegian Wood” or the harpsichord-sounding piano on “In My Life.”

He was flexible and open-minded enough to translate their most playful and abstract requests into reality and completely unflappable when confronted with apparently impossible demands during the making of Strawberry Fields Forever or I Am the Walrus.

“When people ask me questions about ‘What did George Martin really do for you?’ I have only one answer. ‘What does he do now?’” wrote John Lennon in 1971. “It’s not a putdown, it’s the truth.”

Another way to see Martin’s influence on the Beatles is to consider the Beatles without him. “Let It Be” was produced by Phil Spector — his recent conviction for murder aside, the wizard behind hits from the Ronettes and the Righteous Brothers, among many, many others. And though “Let It Be” is a classic, it was re-released in 2003 at McCartney’s insistence — though one might argue that Spector had merely tried to do the same kinds of things with “Let It Be” that Martin had with previous Beatles albums.

Read more here: http://www.kansascity.com/entertainment/music-news-reviews/article64927422.html#storylink=cpy

 He oversaw the post-production of the music on the mid-90s Beatles’ Anthology compilations, but curiously pleaded failing hearing when it came to producing two “new” Beatles using old Lennon demos. He remained unfailingly modest about his role in the band’s success: “I can’t imagine anyone who’s been luckier than I have,” he said towards the end of his life, perhaps safe in the knowledge that he wasn’t the only one blessed by immense good fortune the day the Beatles walked into his studio.

Sir Paul McCartney has paid tribute to Sir George Martin, the record producer known as the Fifth Beatle, calling him a “true gentleman and like a second father to me”.

“RIP dad. I love you. I’m so proud to have been your son. I’ll miss you more than words can say. Thank you for the all times we had together,” tweeted Sir George’s son Giles, who is also a producer.

Ringo Starr tweeted, “Thank you for all your love and kindness George peace and love xx”

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