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> Music & Dance

Phil Spector: Troubled Innovative Genius of Pop Music   

C  In-Person Class: This class will be taught in person, in the classroom at the Red Cross building.
     Enrollment: The American Red Cross pandemic protocols may limit the enrollment for this class.
Registrants will be informed in advance, and a waitlist will be available.

Phil Spector (1939-2021), whom Tom Wolfe termed “The First Tycoon of Teen,” composed and produced “little symphonies for the kids” from the late 1950s into the 1960s and beyond. After a traumatic childhood, a teenage Spector entered the pop music world. He launched his own record firm at the age of 21, and peaked with African-American girl groups – the Crystals, Darlene Love, the Ronettes – and his distinctive “wall of sound.” Later, Spector worked with Ike and Tina Turner, the Beatles, and others. However, his deeply disturbed behavior gradually worsened. He shot an actress in his Los Angeles mansion, and later died in prison. In this class we will hear samples of Spector’s wonderful music as presenter Mike Homel traces Spector’s tragic life from beginning to end.


Michael Homel is Professor Emeritus of History at Eastern Michigan University. He specializes in 20th century American history and American urban history. He is the author of Unlocking City Hall: Exploring the History of Local Government and Politics, and other publications on urban politics and education.


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