In the 1960s, record producers began to become household names, thanks to a combination of technology and vision. Prior to that decade, technology essentially only allowed recording to document a performance. Once it advanced to where music could be overdubbed, edited and shaped, someone was needed to supervise this process. And men such as George Martin, Phil Spector, Quincy Jones and Brian Wilson each had a vision of how that technology could create a new kind of popular music.
In Behind the Glass, Howard Massey of EQ magazine interviews Martin, Wilson, and their more recent contemporaries, such as Glenn Ballard, who produced Alanis Morrisette's first two records, Eddie Kramer, who worked with Jimi Hendrix, Led Zeppelin, and other hard rockers, Arif Marden, who's another well-known producer, and 32 other producers.
For the serious home music creator looking for inspiration, the men (and one woman, Sylvia Massy Shivy, who has produced Johnny Cash, Love and Rockets, and System of a Down) interviewed by Massey have a wealth of ideas and advice. Massey frequently keeps the home recordist in mind with his questions, especially regarding EQ, mixing, and avoiding a muddy sounding bottom-end. It's no coincidence that Ballard's interview appears first: after all, Alanis Morrisette's Jagged Little Pill CD was recorded in his home studio, on an Alesis ADAT machine, the type of technology available to just about anyone.
While 37 producers in all are interviewed, as always, there are going to be names that go missing. Your personal list will probably be different from mine, but I would have liked to have seen Quincy Jones, Jimmy Page (who oversaw production on all of Led Zeppelin's recordings, and especially at the band's peak in the late '60s and early 1970s, and achieved remarkable sounds (fortunately, Eddie Kramer and Andy Johns, two of Page's engineers are represented) and "Mutt" Lange interviewed, as well as Pierre Marchand, whose exceptional production transformed Sarah McLachlan's 1993 CD Fumbling Towards Ecstasy from a collection of often slight songs into a triumph of atmosphere and mood.