Alan Livingston - Capitol Records President Died Mar 16, 2009 0:36:03 GMT -5
Post by yerblues1968 on Mar 16, 2009 0:36:03 GMT -5
Capitol Records building on Hollywood and Vine Streets,
Los Angeles, California USA
BOZO THE CLOWN CREATOR ALAN LIVINGSTON DIES AT 91
Sat Mar 14, 1:42 pm ET
LOS ANGELES – Alan W. Livingston, the music executive who created Bozo the Clown and signed the Beatles during his tenure as president of Capitol Records, has died. He was 91.
Alan W. Livingston, President of Capitol Records
Livingston died Friday of age-related causes in his Beverly Hills home, said his stepdaughter, Jennifer Lerner.
A recent photo of Bozo the Clown.
Livingston began his multifaceted career in show business as a writer and producer of children's read-along record albums for Capitol Records. He came up with the Bozo the Clown character for the 1946 album Bozo at the Circus, which became a hit and spawned a cottage industry of merchandise and the television series featuring the wing-haired clown.
When he moved into executive positions at Capitol Records in the early 1950s, Livingston signed Frank Sinatra, then at a low point in his career, and introduced him to arranger Nelson Riddle. Together, the pair produced I've Got the World on a String and Young At Heart, which led to Sinatra's comeback.
Livingston left the record label in the late 1950s to work in television, where he produced the western series Bonanza. He returned to Capitol Records as president in the 1960s, when he signed the Beach Boys and Steve Miller and the Band.
The Beatles first album under Capitol Records Meet The Beatles! released in 1964.
When Livingston heard the Beatles song I Want to Hold Your Hand, he agreed to release the single and brought the Fab Four to the United States in 1964 to promote it. Capitol, which was partly owned by the Beatles' record company EMI in the United Kingdom, earlier had rejected the group's initial hit singles as unsuitable for the American market.
"He had great taste and judgment, as far as musical talent, and as an executive, he was always very mentoring, very supportive," said Neil Portnow, the president and CEO of the National Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences, who worked with Livingston in the 1970s.
In addition to Lerner, Livingston is survived by his wife Nancy Olson, one son, one daughter, and another stepdaughter.
His late brother Jay Livingston, who died in 2001, was a composer who teamed with songwriter Ray Evans to produce such standards as Mona Lisa, Silver Bells and Que Sera, Sera (Whatever Will Be, Will Be) and the theme music for Bonanza.
Alan Livingston tells how The Band got its name. (1:23 minutes)
DeConstructing Pop Culture: The Beatles’ Contract History with Capitol Records, 15 May 2009