The usual studio team of George Martin and Geoff Emerick was not available for today’s session, which involved cutting a new lead vocal for “Getting Better.” They had some higher priority than The Beatles, I guess.

Instead, the session was overseen by engineer Peter Vince, assisted by Ken Scott. Vince had a long and productive career in the music industry but he did not produce Hunky Dory and Ziggy Stardust. Ken Scott did, so he’s the one I’m interested in.

Among David Bowie’s producers, Tony Visconti did the most albums and gets the most ink, but Ken Scott was behind the boards for arguably the most golden stretch of Bowie’s career (from Hunky Dory through Aladdin Sane). He also produced Devo’s Duty Now for the Future and albums for everyone from Jeff Beck, The Tubes, and Missing Persons to Stanley Clarke, the Mahavishnu Orchestra, and Henry Mancini. As an engineer he worked with Lou Reed, Procol Harum, Harry Nilsson, Elton John, Duran Duran, and lots of others. Beatle-wise, in addition to serving as an engineer on everything from Beatles for Sale to Abbey Road, he did solo records with everyone except Paul.

Despite all that, Scott remains something of an unknown quantity, a solid professional who makes things sound good without calling a lot of attention to himself. He did write an autobiography in 2012, but I don’t think many people read it — I didn’t even read it, and who’s the target audience for these things if not me?

As luck would have it, Scott will turn 70 about a month from now (which makes him a few months younger than Bowie, surprisingly enough). So let me wish him an early Happy Birthday and say thanks, Ken, for all you’ve done. Take a bow, sir.

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