Alan Parsons photograph

Alan Parsons

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Gender Male
Age 73
Web site
Date of birth December 20,1948
Zodiac sign Sagittarius
Born London
United Kingdom
Music groups The Alan Parsons Project
Job Record producer
Audio engineer
Film Score Composer
Movies/Shows Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs
Game Over
Official site
Listen artist
SpouseLisa Griffiths
Groups The Alan Parsons Project
ChildrenJeremy Parsons
SongsSongsEye in the SkyEye in the Sky · 1982 SiriusEye in the Sky · 1982 Don't Answer MeAmmonia Avenue (Expanded Edition) · 1983 View 25+ more
ListEye in the SkyEye in the Sky · 1982
Albums Eye in the Sky
Upcoming events Royal Theater Carré
Date of Reg.
Date of Upd.
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Alan Parsons Life story

Alan Parsons OBE is an English audio engineer, songwriter, musician, and record producer. Parsons's father was Parsons Code developer Alexander Denys Herbert Parsons; his mother was Jane Kelty MacLeod.

Alan Parsons (born 20 December 1948) is an English audio engineer, songwriter, musician and record producer.

Parsons was involved with the production of several notable albums, including the Beatles' Abbey Road (1969) and Let It Be (1970), Pink Floyd's The Dark Side of the Moon (1973), and the eponymous debut album by Ambrosia in 1975. Parsons's own group, The Alan Parsons Project, as well as his subsequent solo recordings, have also been commercially successful. He has been nominated for 13 Grammy Awards, with his first win occurring in 2019 for Best Immersive Audio Album for Eye in the Sky (35th Anniversary Edition).

Music career

In October 1967, at the age of 18, Parsons went to work as an assistant engineer at Abbey Road Studios. He was a tape operator during the Beatles' Get Back sessions, and he earned his first credit on the LP Abbey Road. He became a regular there, engineering such projects as Wings' Wild Life and Red Rose Speedway, five albums by the Hollies and Pink Floyd's The Dark Side of the Moon, for which he received his first Grammy Awards nomination.

Parsons considered himself to be a recording director, likening his contribution to recordings to what Stanley Kubrick contributed to film. In his work with Al Stewart's "Year of the Cat," Parsons added the saxophone part and transformed the original folk concept into the jazz-influenced ballad that put Stewart onto the charts.Parsons also produced three albums by Pilot, a Scottish pop rock band, whose hits included "January" and "Magic". He also mixed the debut album by the American band Ambrosia and produced their second album, Somewhere I've Never Travelled. Parsons was nominated for a Grammy Award for both albums.In 1975, he declined Pink Floyd's invitation to work on Wish You Were Here, the follow-up for Dark Side, and instead initiated the Alan Parsons Project with producer, songwriter, and occasional singer Eric Woolfson, whom he had met at Abbey Road. The Project consisted of a revolving group of studio musicians and vocalists, most notably the members of Pilot and (on the first album) the members of Ambrosia. Unlike most rock groups, the Alan Parsons Project never performed live during its heyday, although it did release several music videos. Its only live performance during its original incarnation was in 1990. It released ten albums, the last in 1987. The Project terminated in 1990 after Parsons and Woolfson split, with the Project's intended 11th album released that year as a Woolfson solo album. Parsons continued to release work in his own name and in collaboration with other musicians. Parsons and his band regularly toured many parts of the world.

Although an accomplished vocalist, keyboardist, bassist, guitarist and flautist, Parsons only sang infrequent and incidental parts on his albums, such as the background vocals on "Time". While his keyboard playing was very audible on the Alan Parsons Project albums, very few recordings feature his flute. He briefly returned to run Abbey Road Studios in its entirety. Parsons also continued with his selective production work for other bands.

Of all his collaborators, guitarist Ian Bairnson worked with Parsons the longest, including Parsons' post-Project albums: Try Anything Once, On Air, The Time Machine and The Secret.

In 1998, Parsons became vice-president of EMI Studios Group, including the Abbey Road Studios. He soon left the post, deciding to return to more creative endeavours. Parsons remained as a creative consultant and associate producer for the group.

As well as receiving gold and platinum awards from many nations, Parsons has received thirteen Grammy Award nominations. In 2006, he received a nomination for Best Surround Sound Album for A Valid Path. In 2019, he finally won his first Grammy Award for Best immersive Audio Album for his remastered 35th anniversary edition of Eye in the Sky.Beginning in 2001 and extending for four years, Parsons led a Beatles tribute show called A Walk Down Abbey Road featuring a group of headlining performers such as Todd Rundgren, Ann Wilson of Heart, John Entwistle of the Who and Jack Bruce of Cream. The show structure included a first set where all musicians assembled to perform each other's hits, and a second set featuring all Beatles songs.

Since 1999, he has toured as the Alan Parsons Live Project (with Woolfson's permission). The band currently features lead singer P. J. Olsson, guitarist Jeff Kollman, drummer Danny Thompson, keyboardist Tom Brooks, bass guitarist Guy Erez, vocalist and saxophonist Todd Cooper, guitarist and vocalist Dan Tracey, along with Parsons on rhythm guitar, keyboards and vocals. This band performed live in Medellín, Colombia in 2013 as Alan Parsons Symphonic Project in a performance recorded for Colombian television and also released on CD (live 2-CD) and DVD (May 2016).In May 2005, Parsons appeared at the Canyon Club in Agoura Hills, California, to mix front-of-house sound for Southern California-based Pink Floyd tribute band Which One's Pink? and their performance of the Dark Side of the Moon in its entirety.In 2010, Parsons released his single "All Our Yesterdays" through Authentik Artists. Parsons also launched a DVD educational series in 2010, titled the Art and Science of Sound Recording (ASSR) on music production and the complete audio recording process. The single "All Our Yesterdays" was written and recorded during the making of ASSR. The series, narrated by Billy Bob Thornton, gives detailed tutorials on virtually every aspect of the sound recording process.During 2010, several media reports (one of which included a quote from a representative of Parsons), alleged that the song "Need You Now" by country music group Lady Antebellum used the melody and arrangement of "Eye in the Sky".

Parsons produced Jake Shimabukuro's album Grand Ukulele, which was released on 2 October 2012. Also in 2012, he contributed lead vocals and performed keyboards and guitar on the track "Precious Life" by German electronic music duo Lichtmond, and appeared with many other noted progressive-rock musicians on the Prog Collective album by Billy Sherwood, singing lead on "the Technical Divide."

Parsons engineered the third solo album by Steven Wilson, The Raven that Refused to Sing (And Other Stories), released on 25 February 2013.

In late 2013, a live album recorded on tour in Germany and Austria with the title LiveSpan was released, accompanied by a single called "Fragile" with Simon Philips on drums.

Legacy Recordings, the catalogue division of Sony Music Entertainment, celebrated the 35th anniversary of Eye in the Sky, with the worldwide release of a definitive deluxe collector's box set, featuring rare and unreleased material, on 17 November 2017.

On 19 July 2018, Parsons and engineer Noah Bruskin opened a new recording studio, ParSonics. ParSonics was used in the recording of Alan Parsons’ most recent album The Secret.On 26 April 2019, Parsons released a new studio album, The Secret, his first album in 15 years.On 15 July 2022, Parsons released a new studio album, From the New World.

Family and personal life

His father was Denys Parsons, the grandson of the famous actor Sir Herbert Beerbohm Tree. Denys Parsons was a scientist, a film maker, and the press officer for the British Library, as well as a talented pianist and flautist. He developed the Parsons Code as a means of classifying musical melody and was the author of The Directory of Tunes and Musical Themes (1975, revised 2008).Parsons resides in Santa Barbara, California. He has two sons from his first marriage. He is married to Lisa Griffiths; they have two daughters.


Full discography

Billboard Top 40 hit singles (US)

1976 – "(The System of) Doctor Tarr and Professor Fether" – No. 37

1977 – "I Wouldn't Want to Be Like You" – No. 36

1979 – "Damned If I Do" – No. 27

1980 – "Games People Play" – No. 16

1981 – "Time" – No. 15

1982 – "Eye in the Sky" – No. 3

1984 – "Don't Answer Me" – No. 15

1984 – "Prime Time" – No. 34

Canadian singles

1976 – "(The System of) Doctor Tarr and Professor Fether" – No. 62

1977 – "I Wouldn't Want to Be Like You" – No. 22

1980 – "Damned If I Do" – No. 16

1981 – "Games People Play" – No. 9

1981 – "Time" – No. 30

1982 – "Eye in the Sky" – No. 1

1983 – "You Don't Believe" – No. 43

1984 – "Don't Answer Me" – No. 20

1985 – "Let's Talk About Me" – No. 89

Honours and awards

Parsons was appointed Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in the 2021 Birthday Honours for services to music and music production.


1973 – Pink Floyd – The Dark Side of the Moon – Grammy Nomination for Best Engineered Album, Non-Classical

1975 – Ambrosia – Ambrosia – Grammy Nomination for Best Engineered Album, Non-Classical

1976 – Ambrosia – Somewhere I've Never Travelled – Grammy Nomination for Best Engineered Album, Non-Classical

1976 – The Alan Parsons Project – Tales of Mystery and Imagination – Grammy Nomination for Best Engineered Album, Non-Classical

1978 – The Alan Parsons Project – Pyramid – Grammy Nomination for Best Engineered Album, Non-Classical

1978 – Alan Parsons – Producer of the Year, Grammy Nomination for Producer of the Year

1979 – Ice Castles – Original Motion Picture Soundtrack – Grammy Nomination for Best Album of Original Score Written for a Motion Picture

1979 – The Alan Parsons Project – Eve – Grammy Nomination for Best Engineered Album, Non-Classical

1981 – The Alan Parsons Project – The Turn of a Friendly Card – Grammy Nomination for Best Engineered Album, Non-Classical

1982 – The Alan Parsons Project – Eye in the Sky – Grammy Nomination for Best Engineered Album, Non-Classical

1986 – The Alan Parsons Project – "Where's The Walrus?" – Grammy Nomination for Best Rock Instrumental Performance

2007 – Alan Parsons – A Valid Path – Grammy Nomination for Best Surround Sound Album

2018 – Alan Parsons, Dave Donnelly, & PJ Olsson – "Eye in the Sky – 35th Anniversary Edition" – Grammy Award for Best Immersive Audio Album – Alan Parsons, surround mix engineer; surround mastering engineers; Alan Parsons, surround producer (The Alan Parsons Project)


External links

Official website

Alan Parsons at AllMusic

Crawdaddy! "Parsons Knows: The Tale of Alan Parsons and Edgar Allan Poe"

Alan Parsons NAMM Oral History Program Interview (2011)

Alan Parsons Photos

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