Friday, May 25, 2007

Alan Parsons Project

@ Wiki
Alan Parsons (born December 20, 1948 in London, England) is a British audio engineer, musician, and record producer.

Career in brief
Parsons first came to prominence as a studio engineer for such albums as The Beatles' Abbey Road and Pink Floyd's iconic The Dark Side of the Moon. He was known for going beyond what would normally be considered the scope of a recording engineer's duties. He considered himself to be a recording director, likening his contribution to recordings to what Stanley Kubrick did on film. This is obvious in his work with Al Stewart's Year of the Cat, where Parsons added the saxophone part and transformed the original folk concept into the jazz-influenced ballad that put Al Stewart onto the charts. It is also heard in Parsons' influence on the Hollies' He Ain't Heavy, He's My Brother and The Air That I Breathe, sharp departures from their 60s pop Stay, Just One Look, Stop, Stop, Stop or "Bus Stop". Parsons also was known to have swapped shifts during the engineering of The Dark Side of the Moon so he could work entirely on the project.

Parsons also produced three albums by Pilot, a Scottish rock/pop band, whose hits included January and Magic, the band featuring future "Project" members Ian Bairnson on guitar, Stuart Tosh on drums and David Paton on lead vocals, guitars and bass.

Apparently inspired by his influential contribution to Stewart's work, he founded The Alan Parsons Project with producer and songwriter (and occasional singer) Eric Woolfson in 1975. The Project dissolved after 1987, and Parsons continues to release work in his own name and in collaboration with other musicians.

Although an accomplished vocalist, keyboardist, bassist and flutist, Parsons only sang infrequent and incidental parts on his albums. Whilst his keyboard playing was very prominent on Alan Parsons Project albums, very few recordings feature his flute.

Guitarist Ian Bairnson worked with Parsons the longest, through his post-Woolfson albums Try Anything Once, On Air, and The Time Machine.

Nowadays he tours under a revised name, The Alan Parsons Live Project (with Woolfson's permission). In the years 2004-2006 The Alan Parsons Live Project offered world-spanning concerts presenting some material from his most recent album A Valid Path (the earlier 2004-2005 shows offered vocalist P.J. Olsson's track More Lost Without You while the later 2006 shows presented The Crystal Method-featured We Play the Game and opened with Return to Tunguska) along with hits spanning the "Project" years.

Following the release of the 2006 album A Valid Path Parsons received a grammy nomination in the "Best Surround Sound 5.1" category but did not win.

* Tales of Mystery and Imagination - 1975
* I Robot - June 1977
* Pyramid - June 1978
* Eve - 1979
* The Turn of a Friendly Card - November 1980
* Eye in the Sky -June 1982
* The Best of the Alan Parsons Project - 1983
* Ammonia Avenue - February 1984
* Vulture Culture - March 1985
* Stereotomy - November 1985
* Gaudi - 1987
* The Best of the Alan Parsons Project, Vol. 2 - 1988
* Pop Classics - October 9, 1989
* Try Anything Once - October 6, 1993
* The Very Best Live - June 27, 1995
* Apollo - July 1, 1997
* The Definitive Collection - July 15, 1997
* On Air - July 25, 1997
* Sound Check 2 - April 15, 1999
* Master Hits - The Alan Parsons Project - July 27, 1999
* Alan Parsons Project - Greatest Hits Live - August 2, 1999
* Eye in the Sky - August 3, 1999
* Eye in the Sky - Encore Collection - August 3, 1999
* Time Machine - September 28, 1999
* Alan Parsons Project - Gold Collection - May 9, 2000
* Works - August 22, 2002
* Ultimate - March 23, 2004
* Extended Versions: The iEncore Collection Live - June 1, 2004
* A Valid Path - August 24, 2004

Producer discography
1975 Steve Harley & Cockney Rebel - The Best Years of Our Lives
1976 John Miles - Rebel
1976 Al Stewart - The Year of the Cat
1978 Al Stewart - Time Passages

Engineering discography
1969 The Beatles - Abbey Road
1970 Pink Floyd - Atom Heart Mother
1973 Pink Floyd - The Dark Side of the Moon
1976 Al Stewart - Year of the Cat

Solo discography
1993 Try Anything Once,
1996 On Air - includes CD-ROM containing some material on the history of aviation
1999 The Time Machine
2004 A Valid Path, with David Gilmour on "Return to Tunguska"

The Alan Parsons Project song Sirius has been used for years by the Nebraska Cornhuskers, Pittsburgh Steelers, New Orleans Saints, Chicago Bulls, Phoenix Suns and the Kansas City Chiefs as background music for their home team player introductions. It was also used by professional wrestler Ricky "The Dragon" Steamboat as his theme music during his first stint in the World Wrestling Federation in the 1980s. (In addition, the song the Bulls use as background music for the visiting team introductions is Pink Floyd's "On The Run", from "The Dark Side of the Moon", engineered by Parsons.)

Alan Parsons resides in the Santa Barbara, California area.

In May 2005, Alan Parsons appeared at the Canyon Club in Agoura Hills, California to mix "front of house" sound for Southern California based Pink Floyd tribute band "Which One's Pink" and their performance of "The Dark Side of the Moon" in its entirety.

Indie band Grandaddy made a promotional CD with the track Alan Parsons In A Winter Wonderland. =>>>>>>>>>>>

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