BEATLES RECORDING ENGINEER GEOFF EMERICK HAS DIED AT 72

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Geoff Emerick who worked with The Beatles as a recording engineer on Revolver, Sgt. Pepper, The White Album and Abbey Road and won four Grammy Awards for his work has died of a heart attack at the age of 72.

Emerick began working at EMI at the age of 15 as a assistant engineer. He was only 20 when he began working with The Beatles. The first track he worked on was Tomorrow Never Knows. His recording suggestions would be essential to The Beatles getting the sound they wanted on the records. For example on Tomorrow Never Knows his suggestion to record John Lennon’s vocals through a Leslie speaker helped get the sound that John wanted on his vocals. Emerick quit working with The Beatles in the summer of 1968 during the recording of The White Album due to the Beatles inner fighting at the time. He would come back the next year at the suggestion of Paul McCartney to work on Abbey Road.

After The Beatles Geoff Emerick would work on a number of Paul McCartney albums as an engineer.  He would produce one of my favorite Elvis Costello albums- Imperial Bedroom and worked with Badfinger, America, Art Garfunkel, Jeff Beck, Supertramp, Cheap Trick and others. A decade ago he published Here, There and Everywhere: My Life Recording The Music of The Beatles- a somewhat controversial book which has been viewed as a pro-McCartney book. Emerick passed away yesterday at 72.

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5 responses to “BEATLES RECORDING ENGINEER GEOFF EMERICK HAS DIED AT 72

  1. While I think it’s fair to say The Beatles would not have sounded the same without the brilliant George Martin, one sometimes forgets the crucial role some of the sound engineers at Abbey Road have played.

    For example, they invented the recording technique known as automatic double tracking (ADT), which was introduced on Revolver and became an industry standard soon thereafter. Based on Wikipedia, that invention was solely credited to Ken Townsend, and I’m not sure what involvement if any Emerick had.

    My point is while the producer oftentimes is in the limelight, the sound engineers do important work behind the scenes that isn’t always recognized.

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