Pop Producer Mickie Most Dies
Most, real name Michael Peter Hayes, died at home in north London on Friday.
Reported to be worth £50m and credited with producing more No 1 hits
world-wide than any other record producer, he had been battling the rare
cancer mesothelioma for a year.
During a long career he recorded work with The Animals, Hot Chocolate and
Born in Aldershot, Hampshire, Most was known to many as a panellist on
the hit TV talent show New Faces in the 1970s.
But he began his music career in The Most Brothers, whose backing band
included future Shadows Hank Marvin and Bruce Welch on guitars.
"It was this determination and belief that contributed to his remarkable
achievements" Deke Arlon
In the late 50s and early 60s he became a pop star in South Africa where
his band the Playboys had 11 consecutive number ones with covers of American hits.
After he returned to the UK, his first job producing was with the Animals
and their massive hit House of the Rising Sun.
By 1964 he had won his first Grammy award.
In the late 60s he was producing Donovan, Lulu and Beck.
The 70s he signed Mud and Suzi Quatro to his own label - Rak Records -
and worked with Hot Chocolate and Smokie.
Rak was sold to EMI in the late Eighties but Most continued to make money
because he was the first producer in the UK to own the rights to his own records
Many of his songs have held enduring popularity, including Hot Chocolate's
You Sexy Thing, which featured in the hit movie The Full Monty.
Long-term friend Deke Arlon, the president of Sanctuary Entertainment Group,
said: "Mickie's musical success in the US stemmed from his monthly
trips to New York and LA carrying a briefcase full of his latest tapes.
"He knocked on the doors of top record executives and wouldn't
leave until they'd heard his music.
"Introducing R&B to America was no easy feat. It was this determination
and belief that contributed to his remarkable achievements."
Nicky Chinn, of the Seventies song-writing and producing team Chinn and
Chapman, described Most as a "giant of the industry".
He said: "He was a great man and my best friend. He had an incredible
skill in picking songs - he could pick a song on the moon."
Most had two daughters Nathalie and Christalle and a son Calvin.
Among his achievements latterly was the success of the album by Johnny
Hates Jazz, co-produced with the band's drummer, Calvin.
Nathalie is a successful publisher at the forefront of the Rak Music empire.
His wife Christina was at his side when he died.
*** POSTED JUNE 3, 2003 ***