George Martin, noted for his work as The Beatles’ music producer, passed away aged 90, in the UK.
The news was confirmed by Ringo Starr on Twitter. “God bless George Martin,” Ringo tweeted, adding, “Peace and love to Judy and his family, love Ringo and Barbara. George will be missed.”
Later, John Lennon and Yoko Ono’s son Sean Lennon also expressed his condolences to Martin’s family, reported Mirror.co.uk
Martin was often called “the fifth Beatle” as an acknowledgement of his contribution to the band’s sound. It was Martin who advised that the tempo of “Please, Please Me” be changed, from a slower ballad to a fast-paced rock number, propelling it to the top of the charts.
He is believed to have quipped to the band in the control room of the studio, “Gentlemen, you have your first number 1 record”. Martin would go on to arrange the music for every Beatles album that was released since then, right up to Abbey Road (except for Let It Be).
The strings on “Yesterday” and the Indian sitar that George Harrison played in “Norwegian Wood” were thought to be influenced by Martin. He also played on several of their songs.
Of course, Martin’s role in the Beatles’ journey began even before he started working on their music. After they were turned down by major players like Decca, it was Martin who signed them on to Parlophone in 1962. It was also at Martin’s suggestion that the Beatles replaced their original drummer Pete Best, bringing in Ringo Starr.
Martin would go on to work with many other musicians, and famously re-recorded Elton John’s “Candle In The Wind” in 1997, as well as a couple of James Bond themes (including one by Paul McCartney). He was knighted in 1996.
Thank you for all your love and kindness George peace and love xx pic.twitter.com/um2hRFB7qF
— #RingoStarr (@ringostarrmusic) March 9, 2016
God bless George Martin peace and love to Judy and his family love Ringo and Barbara George will be missed xxx — #RingoStarr (@ringostarrmusic) March 9, 2016