Brett Alan wrote:
I don't think we have to exclude rap producers. It's more fun if we have all kinds of rock producers.
Not to mention that Rick Rubin was already mentioned, and while he does a lot of other stuff, he's probably the greatest rap producer ever.
Don't have time right now to get too into this, but off the top of my head:
Kenny Gamble & Leon Huff
Jerry Leiber & Mike Stoller
Some good ones, but for sake of discussion...
Gamble & Huff...Great thinkers who took a terrific idea (Motown)...ran with it and expanded it to take on the character of Philadelphia. After their initial hands on introductory successes, they essentially folllwed the Berry Gordy Jr model and focused on the executive duties of running a profitable enterprise and left the "in the pit" producing to others...Thom Bell, perhaps the most prolific of them, and Producer/songwriters like Bobby Eli, Norman Harris (with Ronnie Baker & Earl Young), and others. I guess that's why one of the G&F's today owns a large bank and the other is married to 60's songstress Dee Dee Sharp and dabbles in community affairs...or something like that. Producer Don Davis from Detroit (who produced several notable hits at his United Sound Studios ) did much the same...ended up starting a bank of his own. If you count Gordy and G&H, then I guess you'd have to include Clive Davis. Although Clive throws those over the top Grammy party's every year, and had all these producer awards for his association with some great artists (Whitney Houston eg.)...he's not the guy in the session getting the stuff done that has the most input in the finished product...he's the guy pulling all the strings to produce profit on the bottom line going by the title of "executive producer".
Now Norman Whitfield...HE was a hands on kind of guy...
Lieber& Stoller...interesting...but were they primarily songwriters or producers?
Quincy...Crackerjack producer and musician. Perhaps the most respected of any living rock/pop producer today. This particular forum however, may argue that Michael Jackson alone does not make a "rock" producer, since much of Quincy's credits are in film, television, and mainstream pop artists. Just sayin...
Toussant and Wexler...Both solid producers with great resumes.