Mickie Most

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Mickie Most
Mickie Most
Background info
Full name Michael Peter Hayes
Birthday/Birthplace (1938-06-20)20 June 1938
Aldershot, Hampshire, England
Deceased 30 May 2003(2003-05-30)
London, England
Genre(s) Pop, rock
Profession(s) Record producer, arranger, singer
Instruments Vocals
Active Years 1958–2003
Record Labels Decca, RAK
Worked with The Animals, Arrows, Herman’s Hermits, Donovan, Suzi Quatro, and Jeff Beck

Michael Peter Hayes, más conocido como Mickie Most (20 de junio de 1938 – 30 de mayo de 2003) fue un Productor Musical Inglés, bajo su dirección produjo artistas de la talla de The Animals, Herman’s Hermits, The Nashville Teens, Donovan, Lulu, Suzi Quatro, Hot Chocolate, The Arrows, Racey, y The Jeff Beck Group. Además fue fundador del sello discográfico RAK Records.​

Mickie Most’s Biography


Most was born as Michael Peter Hayes in Aldershot, Hampshire. He was the son of a sergeant major in the army, he moved with his parents to Harrow in 1951. He was influenced by skiffle and rock and roll in his youth. He left school at age 15 and worked as a waiter-singer at the 2i Coffee Bar in London, where he became friends with Led Zeppelin’s future mananger and business partner Peter Grant, and formed a duo with Alex Wharton (aka Alex Murray ) that was called The Most Brothers. They recorded the single Takes A Whole Lotta Loving to Keep My Baby Happy for Decca Records before it was disbanded. Wharton later went on to produce the single from The Moody Blues Go Now. After changing his name to Mickie Most in 1959, Mickie traveled to South Africa with his wife Christina, and formed a pop group, Mickie Most and the Playboys. The band scored 11 No. 1 consecutive there, mostly versions of Ray Peterson, Gene Vincent, Buddy Holly and Eddie Cochran. He returned to London in 1962, worked as a seller of tour packages, and recorded Mister Porter, No. 45 on the UK Singles Chart in July 1963 and The Feminine Look in 1963, with Jimmy Page on the guitar, which was a success moderate.

As Producer

Tired of selling tour packages, Most decided to concentrate on other aspects of the music industry. His first job was the sale of records and later he started working as a producer for Columbia Records. After discovering The Animals at Newcastle’s A-Go-Go Club, she offered to produce her first single, Baby Let Me Take You Home, which reached number 21 on the UK Singles Chart. His next single, The House of the Rising Sun, became an international hit.

Most was also in charge of the production of a Manchester band called Herman’s Hermits after being contacted by his manager Harvey Lisberg at the suggestion of Derek Everett, his first single, “I’m into Something Good”, was number 1 in 1964, beginning a series of hits both singles and albums (ten million copies sold in a year), with the group for a while challenging The Beatles in popularity in the United States. His management with the artists’ feet on the ground, his vision for business and the ability to select successful singles established him as one of the most successful producers in Britain and kept him in demand throughout the years. 1960s and 1970s.

In July 1964, Most produced another top 10 with a version of the song by John D. Loudermilk Tobacco Road, played by The Nashville Teens. In September 1964, with Most as a producer, Brenda Lee recorded Is It True and What’dSay. “Is It True” was released in England, and later in the USA. and it became a success, winning a gold record. What’dSay became another success throughout Europe, but was never released in the US. Most gained the same success with other artists for whom he produced albums and singles between 1964 and 1969, notably Donovan with Sunshine Superman, Mellow Yellow, Jennifer Juniper, and The Hurdy Gurdy Man, and Lulu with To Sir, with Love, The Boat ThatRow, Bang-a-Bang Boom (which ended as the winning song at the 1969 Eurovision Song Contest), Me the Peaceful Heart, and I’m a Tiger. Most also produced the singles of The Seekers Days of My Life and Love Is Kind, Love Is Wine in 1968, and Nancy Sinatra’s The Highway Song in 1969. In addition, in the 1960s, Most signed and produced artists such as Gutarist Terry Reid, and the female group The She Trinity.

As was the custom in England, most of their productions were supported by session musicians based in London, including Big Jim Sullivan and Jimmy Page on guitar, John Paul Jones on bass, Nicky Hopkins on piano, and Bobby Graham on the drums. Most produced the hits of Jeff Beck Love is Blue and Hi Ho Silver Lining and the albums of Jeff Beck Group Truth and Beck-Ola. He joined Beck’s group with Donovan to produce the Barabajagal single. In 1967, after the commercial and critical failure of The Yardbirds album Little Games, he decided to stay out of rock bands. The Yardbirds objected to their insistence that each song should last three minutes maximum and that album production was after the recording and release of the singles. His closed approach also led to the breakup with Donovan in late 1969. Most and Donovan reconciled and met in 1973 for the production of the album Cosmic Wheels in which Most was credited under his real name, Michael Peter Hayes.

RAK Records

Despite these setbacks, Most established its own production company at 155 Oxford Street, London, sharing it with its partner Peter Grant. It was through this association that Most managed the Yardbirds. In 1968, Most and Grant founded RAK Management, but Grant’s involvement with The Yardbirds, which soon evolved into Led Zeppelin, meant that Most had full control of the company in late 1969. RAK Records and RAK Music Publishing were put on March in 1969. RAK Music Publishing owns the copyright to popular songs such as You Sexy Thing composed by Hot Chocolate singer Errol Brown andLove Rock ‘n Roll, written by Alan Merrill and Jake Hooker of the band The Arrows. Both acts were produced by Most.

With RAK ​​Records, Most’s success continued with folk singer Julie Felix who produced the recording of a version of El Cóndor Pasa by Simon & amp; Garfunkel. Felix was the first artist to sign with the seal. Most produced in 1970 the success of Mary Hopkin Temma Harbor for Apple Records, followed by the participant song by the United Kingdom in the Eurovision festival that same year Knock, Knock Who’s There ?. In 1970, Most approached Suzi Quatro and earned her a recording contract after seeing her at a concert in a Detroit ballroom with the band Cradle (which also had the sisters of Quatro Arlene, Patti, and Nancy as members). ). Quatro was among a growing list of artists signed to RAK Records that included the CCS band Alexis Korner, The Arrows, Smokie (with Chris Norman) (originally spelled Smokey), Hot Chocolate, Angie Miller, Chris Spedding and Heavy Metal Kids. Under the composition and production team led by Nicky Chinn and Mike Chapman, RAK scored several number 1 singles on the UK Singles Chart with Suzi Quatro (Can Can and Devil Gate Drive) and Mud (Tiger Feet, Lonely This Christmas and Oh Boy) .

For RAK in the 70s, Most also produced hits for New World, Duncan Browne, Cozy Powell, Tam White, Kandidate, and Racey, as well as 1976 album Chris Spedding by the artist of the same name, which was his first album in lonely. He also produced We Vibrate, the first single from the punk band The Vibrators. In 1980, Most discovered Kim Wilde, who was doing choruses for his father Marty Wilde in a recording session. After listening to it, Most signed Wilde who immediately scored a hit with Kids in America that reached number 2 on the UK Singles Chart, and number 25 on the US Billboard list.

Later race

Most was a panelist on ITV’s New Faces television talent show, where his tough assessments of the contestants foreshadowed Simon Cowell’s style. He was producer of Revolver, a television program dedicated to punk rock which was at odds with his approach of “studio factory” to pop music. Most asked about Kate Bush who appeared as a guest in the pilot episode. In the decade of 1980, the Johnny Hates Jazz, that counted like member the son of Most Calvin Hayes, also signed with RAK ​​Records. RAK was sold to EMI in 1983, but was re-established in 1988. Most was one of the first producers to own the rights to their productions and was commissioned by the administration of RAK Studios, opened in 1976 at St John’s Wood, which is located currently active.

In 1995, the Most fortune was estimated at 50 million pounds and he appeared on the annual list of The Sunday Times among the 500 richest men in England. His house, on Totteridge Lane, London, is claimed to be the largest private house in the United Kingdom, for an estimated value of 4 million pounds. His production work decreased after he was diagnosed with cancer in the year 2000.


On May 30, 2003, Most died at his home in London at the age of 64 because of peritoneal mesothelioma, a rare variant of cancer, he was incinerated in the Golders Green crematorium. He is survived by his wife Christina and their three children: Calvin, Nathalie and Cristalle. A blue plaque to commemorate his life, donated by the Heritage Foundation / Musical Heritage, was unveiled at RAK Studios on May 16, 2004. Lunch and the auction that followed raised more than 40,000 pounds that were donated for research. of mesothelioma.

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