Meet the Producers

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Steve Sutherland  |  Jun 18, 2019
He has penned a dazzling succession of magical melodies, writing many of the most successful hits in the history of pop with theme tunes and Oscar-winning movie scores to his name too. But let's not forget his work as a producer, says Steve Sutherland

They say you can't teach an old dog new tricks but I know for a fact that's a lie. I mean, I was 40 years old when I suddenly learned the difference between a gig and a concert and that the latter demanded the audience behave a mite more decorously than I'd been previously used to.

Steve Sutherland  |  May 28, 2019
From LA scene-maker to success in shaping the early California surf and folk rock sounds, this US-born producer's legacy became overshadowed by the shocking incident that would bring '60s counterculture to its end. Steve Sutherland has the story...

Pop quiz! What was the title of The Golden Penetrators' debut LP? Was it a) 'Posting A Cheque Through A Dead Person's Mail Box?', b) 'All Hail The Thunder!' or c) 'Try Me On For Size?'.

Ha! Gotcha! It was none of the above because The Golden Penetrators weren't a band – though with a name like that they should have been.

Steve Sutherland  |  Apr 16, 2019
Veteran of the late '70s British pub rock scene, this UK-born guitarist began to hone his studio skills when appointed in-house producer for the fledgling Stiff Records label. Steve Sutherland traces the career of the self-effacing pop crafstman they call 'Basher'

What's the most embarrassing thing you've ever done? Snog the wrong person at the office Christmas party? Leave the house with your flies undone? Send an email meant for your partner to your boss by mistake?

Steve Sutherland  |  Mar 19, 2019
Nirvana, Smashing Pumpkins, Green Day... it's not easy making albums that sell in their millions while maintaining credibility with your hard-core indie fans. Steve Sutherland celebrates the producer able to 'shift the units while keeping everything cool...'

The singer was suicidal. All he did in his down time was compile list after list of the songs he wanted played at his funeral. Luckily, if you want to put it that way, there was actually very little down time because the singer was labouring in the studio 16 hours a day under the illusion that what was expected of him was to make, in his own words, 'the next album to set the world on fire'.

The producer remembers it this way: 'Billy wanted to make a record that people would put on and say, "What the f*** was that?"'.

Steve Sutherland  |  Dec 01, 2018
His clients have included the cream of rock royalty, so how come this British-born producer is one of the most divisive around? Steve Sutherland on the man who successfully collaborated with the band whose shadow, some say, he never escaped

It was a job you wouldn't wish on anyone, even your worst enemy. A deadly odds-on no-win nightmare. And Jeff Lynne had just been handed the gig.

'Every morning I would wake up with half dread, half exhilaration,' he remembered later. 'The idea of doing it was the most thrilling thing imaginable… but messing it up would be horrible.' The terrible task in hand? To reanimate The Beatles!

Steve Sutherland  |  Nov 01, 2018
The Stones, Beatles, Led Zeppelin's landmark debut LP... pick up a classic album at random and there's every chance it will credit the work of this British-born producer. Steve Sutherland on the man who began as the first freelance engineer in rock history

It's a Sunday afternoon late in 1966 and we're in South London working overtime at Olympic Studios. The band have already done their stuff – the basic track was laid down a few weeks earlier at the RCA Records Studio in Hollywood. So today it's just us, the producer, his chauffeur, the engineer and the singer, who's busy behind that screen putting down vocal takes between hitting on a mighty spliff he's rolled to keep him in the zone.

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