Soundbreaking begins where a recording does--at the intersection of inspiration and execution. There stands the enigmatic figure of the record producer, the person charged with the critical task of both realizing an artist's vision and capturing it for posterity. Profiling some of the most accomplished and revered producers in the recording industry, Episode One offers a study in contrasting styles and approaches: between the inspired guidance of George Martin in his work with The Beatles and Phil Spector's dictatorial insistence on his signature sound; between the gentle coaxing with which Rick Rubin brought Johnny Cash back to greatness, and the fierce creative independence of artist-producers such as Joni Mitchell and Sly Stone. In the process, The Recording Artist underscores the way in which any music recording is the product of a delicate and infinitely variable balance between man and machine.
Did You Know?
The documentary mentions Sly Stone as an artist who was also his own record producer. Actually he was a producer before he was an artist; in 1964, under his original name Sylvester Stewart, he was producer for the Beau Brummels, a five-piece white American band who were (like many other groups at the time) trying to be "the American Beatles." See more