Sunday, February 26, 2012

Producer spotlight: Steve Lillywhite

I wanted to continue to talk briefly about producers and engineers whose work I admire. They play such a large role on the sound of the music we love. Sometimes without even knowing it, you can have quite a number of albums in your collection and see a pattern of the same producer's names coming up over and over again. 
 Steve Lillywhite is one of these folks. Are you a fan of Peter Gabriel, U2, XTC, Psychedelic Furs, the Rolling Stones, Dave Matthews? Steve has worked with them all.

His 80's productions were characterized by a great drum sound, having a great room reverb. The snap of the snare drum on his records was great!
 Working with guitarist like the Edge, Charlie Burchill from Simple Minds and Stuart Adamson from Big Country showcased some very innovative sounds especially the use of delays and echoes.


Of course Steve is not some 80's fossil. He has gone onto work with Dave Matthews Band, Phish and Liam Gallagher"s Beady Eye. He has adapted to the changing soundscapes of the era!


                                       Some of his work that you may know and love:
                                                         U2 -" I Will Follow"
                                          Psychedelic Furs "Pretty in Pink"
                                        the quirky  XTC -"Making Plans for Nigel"
   I  remember hearing Simple Minds "Waterfront" in early 1984 on the old WHFS
                                 "Sparkle in the Rain" is one of the best albums of the 80's!
      Of course U2's "War" had better known songs than this , but I thought I would spotlight this one.
         Great drum sound!  

                                                                    "Like a Song"



                                       Marshall Crenshaw's "Field Day" has some gems
                                           "Hold It' really has that Lillywhite drum sound

        in the US, Big Country is viewed as one-hit wonder but I really love their early albums.
                                               Lillywhite interview about "the Crossing"
                                       "Just a Shadow" is one of my favorite songs


                          Mick Jagger has always kept a keen eye on on who the hot producers of the day are. In 1985 he chose Steve Lillywhite to produce the Stones "Dirty Work" LP; with mixed results but had some good tracks
                                                      "One Hit to the Body"


    the late, great Kirsty MacColl "You and me Baby" featuring Johnny Marr from the Smiths and David Gilmour of Pink Floyd


 Proving he's not some 80's relic, Steve went to great success producing the Dave Matthews Band.
            This month it was announced he is working with them again on a new album.



                    staying in a more recent era , he worked with noted jam-band Phish
                              "Backward Down the Number Line"

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