Phil Ramone: As Remembered By Family and Friends

May 1, 2013 9:00 AM

As Remembered By Family and Friends


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photo of Phil Ramone

Last month we lost a true musical genius and a genuinely good man, Phil Ramone. His unmatched accomplishments, both technical and creative, have been listed over the past few weeks, though they only touch the surface in describing a man who helped to shape popular culture over the course of six decades, remaining current and vital to the end.

Mix asked some of his friends in the industry to share a story about Phil, something that they will always carry with them. The response was overwhelming, and personal. We published a few in the May print edition of Mix. Here, we present those, plus many more, unedited.

Please send us yours, to, and we will keep it going—a living autograph book in tribute to the Musical Genius and Human Goodness that we remember as Phil Ramone.

photo of BJ Ramone

BJ Ramone

BJ Ramone
I do not believe there is a sufficient language, including music, that could truly express the amount of love, respect, and honor I have for my father, Phil Ramone. It strikes me how lucky I was to have known him not just as my dad outside of the studio, but also to have spent so much time working with him inside the studio as my mentor. And the lines did blur more often than not; there was one such moment during the recording of Miggs album "15th & Hope" that I will always hold close. While tracking the title song, "15th & Hope" (a nod to Billy Joel's "For the Longest Time") we all had just managed to convince my father to get behind the mic. Although Dad and I had worked on many projects before, there was something about this moment- with me in the control room and my father in the booth- where a part of me just felt complete. And as we started up I wondered about the length of time before he would say "I need more me!"; it didn't take too long. The significance of that moment has really stuck with me - connecting with my father on the other side of the glass, sharing in laughter, love and music. What could be better? From growing up watching my dad, to assisting him, to engineering and finally recording my dad singing and having fun- everything seemed to have come full circle. Life seems similar to working on an album, throughout the process everything begins to fall into place and the bigger picture takes shape. Thanks to my dad having provided me with a solid foundation and teaching me a structure to guide my life, everything is beginning to take shape. I owe my dad so much and I am looking forward to making the rest of the album that is my life.

Thank you again for all your love and support. My dad loved you so much and enjoyed every moment he got spend with you.

photo of Al Schmitt

Al Schmitt

Al Schmitt
I was doing an interview for a industry magazine when the interviewer asked me if I had any regrets in my career and I said I had one, that I never got to work with Frank Sinatra who was my idol. Three weeks later I get a call from Phil Ramone asking about my schedule, we figured out a time and he asked my fee, when I told him he grumbled and said O K.  Just before hanging up, I asked who the artist was and he said Frank Sinatra. Later on when we were recording Frank, I told Phil that if he had told me in front who the artist was I would have done it for nothing. His answer was, "if you asked me for more I would have given it to you." Some of my all time favorite times in the studio were with Phil, he was one of a kind and I miss him every day.

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