Phil Spector, the iconic producer known for “The Wall of Sound,” has died at the age of 81.
The Washington Post, and other sources, report Spector died from complications from COVID-19. The Washington Post noted, “California state prison officials told the Associated Press that he died at a hospital but did not provide further details.”
Meanwhile, TMZ reports Spector, who was serving a 19-to-life murder sentence, reportedly tested positive for COVID-19 four weeks ago and was transferred from prison to a local hospital for treatment. While Spector returned to prison once he was deemed well enough to leave the hospital, he was reportedly rushed back to the hospital following breathing issues.
Spector’s prolific career as a producer began in 1958 with The Teddy Bears’ single “To Know Him Is To Love Him.” Spector’s career really took off in the 1960s following a string of hits with The Crystals, Connie Francis, Darlene Love, The Ronettes, The Righteous Brothers and Ike & Tina Turner. The producer’s “Wall of Sound” technique played by the classic group of session musicians The Wrecking Crew has been lauded for decades for its influence on the evolution recording. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1989.
Spector’s final years were spent serving a 19-to-life prison sentence for the murder of Lana Clarkson, a 40-year-old hostess he met at the House of Blues in Hollywood, Calif. the night before her murder at his mansion. Spector’s first trial ended in September 2007 in a hung jury, but in the retrial for a second degree murder charge, Spector was found guilt in April 2009 and began serving his sentence in May.