PHIL SPECTOR’S purported ‘masterpiece’  ‘River Deep Mountain High,’ which never struck gold in America but was a big hit in the UK, featuring Ike and Tina Turner. Spector is 72 Dec 26

A new feature will once a week pay tribute to the many greats on their birthdays.  It’s a great way of keeping our artists before us, whether treasuring their continued presence on the scene or keeping alive the legacies of those who have passed. It’s easy to be sad as we continue losing many of our heroes of music and movies and culture but we can remember them and keep their artistry alive, as it were through the music and videos, which we will feature.  See for complete list of rock and roll birthdays 





 Phillip Harvey “Phil” Spector[1][2] (born Harvey Phillip Spector  on December 26, 1939  is an American record producer and songwriter.

The originator of the “Wall of Sound” production technique, Spector was a pioneer of the 1960s girl-group sound and produced over 25 Top 40 hits in 1960–1965. Some of his famous girl groups are The Ronettes and The Crystals. After this initial success, Spector later worked with artists including Ike and Tina TurnerJohn LennonGeorge Harrison, and the Ramones with similar acclaim. He produced The Beatles‘ Academy Award winning album Let It Be, and the Grammy Award–winning Concert for Bangladesh by former BeatleGeorge Harrison. In 1989, Spector was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as a non-performer. The 1965 song “You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feelin’“, produced and co-written by Spector for The Righteous Brothers, is listed by BMI as the song with the most U.S. airplay in the 20th century.[7]

In 2009, Spector was convicted of second-degree murder in the 2003 shooting death of actress Lana Clarkson in his Alhambra, California, home. He is serving a prison sentence of 19 years to life


Editor’s Note:  Phil Spector has to be the ultimate Rock and Roll tragecdy, a man with his talents to end up languishing the rest of his life in prison after murdering his girlfriend. However, for all the demons and evil that may or may not exist within the Man, Spector’s work   stands on its own merits ;  perhaps his unique personality or troubled upbringing drew him to write the music he did.  In any case,  there’s no reason not to enjoy the music, which has been praised by many including John Lennon, who would record with Spector. It’s strange that Spector’s birthday comes a day after Christmas and  people listening to his famed Christmas album, undoubtedly the best Christmas album ever, in our opinion.

Robin and Maurice Gibb of The Bee Gees 


 Dec. 22, 1949 –  Younger brothers of the BeeGees, Robin and Maurice were twins, and ,sadly, both passed prematurely, Maruice from suspicious circumstances in 2003 when fLORDIA hospital attendants purportedly didn’t provide necessary care.

   Robin pictured  in middle and Maurice, bottom. 

The Bee Gees were a musical group founded in 1958. The group’s line-up consisted of brothers BarryRobin, and Maurice Gibb. The trio were successful for most of their decades of recording music, but they had two distinct periods of exceptional success: as a pop act in the late 1960s/early 1970s, and as prominent performers of the discomusic era in the late 1970s. The group sang three-part tight harmonies that were instantly recognisable; Robin’s clear vibrato lead was a hallmark of their earlier hits, while Barry’s R&B falsetto became their signature sound during the late 1970s and 1980s. The brothers wrote all of their own hits, as well as writing and producing several major hits for other artists.

Robin Hugh GibbCBE (22 December 1949 – 20 May 2012) was a singer and songwriter, best known as a member of the Bee Gees, co-founded with his twin brother Maurice and older brother Barry. Their younger brother Andy was also a singer.

Born in the Isle of Man to English parents, the family later moved to Manchester before settling in Brisbane, Australia. Gibb began his career as part of the family trio and when the group found their first success they returned to the United Kingdom where they achieved worldwide fame. In 2004, the Bee Gees received their CBEs from the Prince of Wales at Buckingham Palace for their “contribution to music”.[9] With record sales estimated in excess of 200 million units, the Bee Gees became one of the most successful pop groups of all time.[10] Music historian Paul Gambaccini described Gibb as “one of the major figures in the history of British music” and “one of the best white soul voices ever”.[11]

After a career spanning six decades, Gibb last performed on stage in February 2012 supporting injured British servicemen and women at a charity concert at the London Palladium.[12] On 20 May 2012, Gibb died at the age of 62 from liver and kidney failure

Maurice Ernest GibbCBE (22 December 1949 – 12 January 2003) was a musician, singer-songwriter and record producer. He was born in the Isle of Man to English parents, the twin brother of Robin Gibb and younger brother to Barry. He is best known as a member of the singing/songwriting trio the Bee Gees, formed with his brothers. Their younger brother Andy was a popular solo singer. The trio got their start in Australia, and found major success when they returned to England. The Bee Gees became one of the most successful pop groups ever.

Editor’s note:  The Bee Gees were, in our opinion, perhaps the finest of all groups which only hit big after the Golden Era (1950s-early 60s. They began in 1958 and got their patented sound down to go on to have two careers, first in rock ballads of the early 60s and then disco in the late 70s.  Both were uniquely outstanding musical outputs but the original era was like none other. Few other groups  if any had the emotional  appeal of the Bee Gees, with yearning songs like ‘I Started A Joke’ and ‘Massachusetts’ . Its very sad to learn that the two surviving brothers did not speak to each other the last year, even after the earlier tragedies of losing younger brothers Andy and then Maurice; you would have thought those losses would have cemented weakened relationships. Finally, Robin wanted to continue on as a solo, according to some. He already had recorded a number of outstanding efforts, such as ‘Please’ below…followed by one of Maurice’s few solo efforts on ‘Closer than Close’