Record producer, hit-picker extraordinaire, entrepreneur, TV talent show pundit, pop mogul Mickie Most was a man ahead of his time, anticipating the workings of modern media before the internet made it all happen. This is the soundtrack to his story, told in rich detail in a picture-packed 72-page booklet.
Making hits seemed all too easy for producer Mickie Most who owed his success to an extraordinary ability to spot a hit tune, combined with unbridled common sense. Most never got his motives confused with art; a hit by any means (with as little time as possible spent in the studio pondering the meaning of life) was his objective and he proved remarkably astute at second-guessing the musical tastes of the common man or woman.
Most arrived back in the UK from South Africa in 1962 in time to take advantage of the fast-changing British music scene. Sensing his early career as a rock’n’roller was at an end, he became an independent producer, supervising smash hits by newcomers the Animals, the Nashville Teens and Herman’s Hermits, all within the space of a few months in 1964. American record companies sat up and took notice and, with his career in the ascendancy, he extended his run of hits on both sides of the Atlantic with artists such as Donovan, Brenda Lee, Lulu and Jeff Beck.
In the 1970s, he became a household name as one of the judging panel on New Faces, a TV talent show which anticipated the X Factor by some three decades – in fact, Simon Cowell cites the fair-minded if plain-speaking Most as a man he greatly admired. In 1970, Most launched the RAK label which quickly made its mark with hits by Julie Felix, Peter Noone and CCS, followed a little later by Mud, Hot Chocolate, Suzi Quatro and Smokey. Incidentally, ‘I Love Rock’n’Roll’ and ‘Living Next Door To Alice’ are the original versions of songs that went onto become huge hits for Joan Jett and Smokie respectively.
Here then is a hand-picked representation of Mickie Most’s best or most significant work, packaged in a rigid slipcase containing a memorabilia-laden 72-page booklet with in-depth notes.