Label: Verve Records - VLP 9222 • Format: Vinyl LP, Album, Mono • Country: UK • Genre: Jazz • Style: Big Band
Johnnie Spenceborn John Spence Abrahams 4 February — 15 August sometimes spelt Johnny Spencewas a British musical arrangerdirectorand orchestra leader. He is credited with the arrangements and musical direction of numerous records  and television light entertainment works  throughout the s and s, and was nominated for an Emmy for Outstanding Achievement in Music Direction of a Variety, Musical or Dramatic Program for his work on the television series This Is Tom Jones.
Spence built a reputation as a pianist and arranger in the second Perdido - The Johnnie Spence Big Band - Why Not! of the s under the wings of Jack Parnell at ATV. At ATV much music was prepared for so many shows. Jack held the post until In the late 50's Spence became piano accompanist to the singer Anne Sheltona popular English vocalist.
Spence's early work was predominantly in comedy records for Parlophone Records,  occasionally working alongside Sir George Martinwho would later find fame as producer of The Beatles. In George Martin decided to use Johnnie Spence, who had just been signed to Parlophone as a musical director, for the upcoming session with his new recording-act Terry Parsons, aka Matt Monro.
George Martin threw everything at this session, including a piece orchestra for a big sound. Two tape machines were running at the same time: one in stereo and one in Perdido - The Johnnie Spence Big Band - Why Not!
, doubling the cost of tape. From 2 November recording session emerged a song that reached no. Spence became Matt's arranger and musical director, his name as closely associated with Matt Monro as Nelson Riddle 's was with Frank Sinatra. Johnnie Spence went on to become one of the most respected arrangers, conductors and composers in the business.
With the success of Parlophone as a pop label, he became orchestral arranger for recordings and television shows for such acts as Shirley BasseyTom JonesEngelbert Humperdinck and Cilla BlackPetula Clark and — during the s — Gilbert O'Sullivan. Since his early twenties, Johnnie was rapidly building a reputation as one of the country's most brilliant and imaginative musical directors and was very much in demand by now on both sides of the Atlantic. In his Sibi Inductis Transfiguratio - Sulfur - - capacity, Johnnie Spence became responsible for creating the sound on all the major hit recordings.
Johnnie Spence and his Orchestra released several of their own records, predominantly of television and film themes; Wheels and First Romancea Jerry Perdido - The Johnnie Spence Big Band - Why Not! composition from his album: All My Own Work The Dr. The single 'Can't Buy Me Love' was a minor hit at Johnnie Spence married Marion Horton b. From onwards the family Les Pilules - Guilda - Elle Est Bien Dans Ma Peau in rented houses in California, close to Los Angeles recording studios.
They eventually moved into a comfortable home in Encino, CA. He was able to secure lucrative work arranging and directing music for both television shows and movies. Johnnie had just signed a contract with the Joey Bishop Show for ABC network when fate struck; he died suddenly at home in Los Angeles of a heart attack on 15 Augustonly 41 years old.
Matt Monro was holidaying in Barbados and couldn't get a flight to Los Angeles in time for the funeral. He was a marvellous arranger, a great band man and his scores for brass, saxes, rhythm and strings were the best I've ever had, much better than I could do. His work with Matt Monro was one of the highlights, one of the joys of my Catfish - Zona B - Original. He always turned up with a very Tighten Up (Part 1) - Archie Bell & The Drells - Tighten Up score.
He was a lovely man, a great character. He did tend to burn the candle at both ends though, and in the middle! It was a great tragedy when he died, it was such a shock, he was so young"- Sir George Martin.
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Personal life [ edit ] Johnnie Spence married Marion Horton b. Retrieved 17 December Retrieved 11 February Categories : births deaths British music arrangers. Namespaces Article Talk. Views Read Edit View history.
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