Harvey Phillip Spector, better known as Phil Spector (born December 26, 1939), is a Record Producer, songwriter, and convicted murderer. He became famous in The '60s for pioneering the "Wall of Sound", a production technique that relied on large groups of musicians playing heavily orchestrated parts to yield a dense, full sound, specifically optimized for the top 40 AM radio of the day. His credits include numerous Girl Groups (The Ronettes, The Crystals), Ike and Tina Turner, The Righteous Brothers, The Beatles' Let It Be, John Lennon's first three solo albums, George Harrison's All Things Must Pass, The Ramones' End Of The Century and Leonard Cohen's Death of a Ladies Man. His production style has served as an important influence on several subgenres of Alternative Rock, such as Chamber Pop and Shoegazing.However, chances are you mostly know him for being totally, 100% batshit insane. There's a reason he's at the top of our "Producer from Hell" list after all. Aside from threatening Leonard Cohen and The Ramones with loaded guns and stealing the tapes of Lennon's Rock 'n' Roll album at gunpoint, there's also the part where he showed his wife a coffin and threatened to kill her if she left, and also the part where he got convicted for murdering actress Lana Clarkson. The last album he was credited on was Silence is Easy by post-Britpop band Starsailor, and even then, they almost immediately booted him off after he produced two tracks.The story of his murder trial was turned into the 2013 HBO movie Phil Spector, directed by David Mamet, with Al Pacino playing Spector.
Tropes pertaining to Phil Spector:
- Ax-Crazy: Judging by the fact that he issued death threats to his wife and his clients, as well as his murder of Lana Clarkson, it's fair to say that he was.....off.
- Bald of Evil / Thousand-Yard Stare: His mugshot.◊
- Broken Ace: The defining producer of 60's pop, while also suffering from severe mental problems.
- Bunny-Ears Lawyer: He's regarded as one of the greatest producers of all time. He's also regarded as completely, mouth-frothingly insane.
- The Cameo: As a cocaine dealer in Easy Rider.
- Christmas Songs: The 1963 album A Christmas Gift for You from Phil Spector, regarded by many as his masterpiece, features rock arrangements of Yuletide favorites performed by such artists as The Ronettes, The Crystals, and Darlene Love.
- Cloudcuckoolander: Phil certainly had an, shall we say interesting way of thinking. David Mamet made this a central element of the HBO film.
- Funny Afro: Phil famously sported a large blonde afro◊ during his murder court case. Al Pacino even recreated it in the 2013 HBO tv movie.
- Gun Nut: Stories have been told about him ready to shoot Leonard Cohen point-blank in the face (according to Cohen, Spector was wielding a crossbow at this incident), and holding The Ramones hostage and making them listen to him play "Baby, I Love You" until four in the morning.
- Mad Artist
- Psychopathic Manchild: Phil loved producing, and wasn't above death threats to get the musicians under his control.
- Record Producer: This trope's patron saint, for better or worse.
- Signature Style: The "Wall of Sound".
- The Sociopath
- The Tyson Zone: The man is so crazy that some particularly outrageous stories about him are at least somewhat plausible.