The producer behind The Ronettes, Tina Turner, and The Beatles
Biography and Guitar Lessons
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River Deep Mountain High
Phil Spector is acknowledged by journalists and peers as one of the most influential figures in pop music history.
His work includes collaborations with Tina Turner, Leonard Cohen, The Ronettes, The Crystals, Righteous Brothers, The Ramones, The Beatles as well as with John Lennon and George Harrison’s solo careers.
Phil is most known for his recording technique dubbed the “wall of sound”, where he would record several instruments playing the same part.
He would do this using legendary session band the Wrecking Crew, a group of L.A based session musicians that played on countless hits in the 60s and 70s.
Phil’s most recognized hits include River Deep, Mountain High, Da Do Ron Ron, Unchained Melody, Then He Kissed Me, Be My Baby, You’ve Lost That Loving Feeling, The Long And Winding Road, My Sweet Lord, Let It Be, Imagine and Happy Xmas (War Is Over).
Phil Spector’s career begun to slow down in the mid-70s following a near-fatal car accident that would see him having 700 stitches to his face and head.
For the second half of the 70s, he did some work with Leonard Cohen and The Ramones until the 80s came around and Spector became reclusive and inactive.
In, 2003 actress Lana Clarkson died in Spector’s famed mansion. The emergency call quotes Spector as saying, “I think I’ve killed someone”.
He was convicted in 2009 and sentenced to 19 years in jail.
Countless artists have stated Phil Spector’s production techniques as a major influence, including Brian Wilson (Beach Boys), Bruce Springsteen, Brian Eno, My Bloody Valentine, Johnny Franz (Dusty Springfield), ABBA and Meatloaf.
As one of the most important producers of the last century, Phil Spector can be found on many top 10 lists, rubbing shoulders with other greats such as Rick Rubin, George Martin, Mutt Lang, and Quincy Jones.
Be My Baby – Step 1
Before we get into building the guitar part, let’s have a listen to the complete song.
Go to Be My Baby step 1.
Be My Baby – Step 2 (Free Preview)
As the song is in the key of E, we can take advantage of open strings. This will help when trying to create a wall of sound.
Go to Be My Baby step 2.
Be My Baby – Step 3
Be My Baby really is a great example of classic songwriting. The chord progressions, the structure, it’s like the ABC of how to write a song.
Go to Be My Baby step 3.
Be My Baby – Step 4
Let’s learn it all over the neck so we can improvise up our favorite part.
Go to Be My Baby step 4.
Be My Baby – Step 5
Your goal is to improvise up as many different parts as you can.
Go to Be My Baby step 5.
Be My Baby – Step 6
If you swap the chord playing for playing a melody, but keep the licks, you’re soloing!
Go to Be My Baby step 6.
Be My Baby – Step 7
Playing along with me is a good way to prepare for playing the song on your own in the final step.
Go to Be My Baby step 7.
Be My Baby – Step 8
Remember, explore that fret board – The longer you can keep improvising for, the better.
Go to Be My Baby step 8.
Chords and Guitar Lessons
When playing this with a band, we need to create a big sounding guitar part to compensate for the lack of an orchestra.
Go to Be My Baby lyrics.
Including detailed, but bite-sized explanations on how the music theory of each song is applied to the neck.
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