Bones Howe

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Dayton Burr "Bones" Howe (born March 18, 1933) is an American record producer and recording engineer who scored a string of hits in the 1960s and 1970s, often of the sunshine pop genre, starting in 1965 with The Turtles cover of Bob Dylan's It Ain't Me Babe, and continuing with most of the hits of the 5th Dimension and The Association. With the exception of "Closing Time" he produced and engineered all of Tom Waits releases with Asylum Records, some of which are considered among the artist's best recordings.[1][2] Their almost decade-long collaboration has been described as "one of the great artist-producer partnerships".[3] Howe performed music supervision on several feature films, and was one of the first industry members to serve as both producer and engineer of the hit records on which he worked. In addition, he was occasionally credited as a musician on recordings as "Dayton Howe".


Early life and education[edit]

Howe was born in Minneapolis, Minnesota and moved to Sarasota, Florida in 1941. He attended Sarasota High School in 1951, becoming a drummer with a dance band and a jazz quintet. He received a bachelor's degree in Electronics and Communication in 1956 from Georgia Tech.[4]


While at Georgia Tech he played with many local bands, and after graduation decided to combine his love of music and his Electronics degree, moving to Hollywood to start a career as an audio engineer at Radio Recorders. From 1956 to 1962 he became well known within the industry and helped develop multi-track and multi-microphone techniques for studio recording.

As a recording engineer, he recorded hits including the Mamas & the Papas' "California Dreamin'" and "Monday, Monday". Johnny Rivers' classic hits were recorded remotely by Bones at Whisky a Go Go. After working with musicians such as Jerry Lee Lewis, Elvis Presley, Juice Newton and Tom Waits, gaining 20 Gold and Platinum awards from the RIAA, he became interested in promoting the use of rock and pop in films, and worked as the music supervisor for several high grossing films such as Back to the Future and Serial Mom.[5]

Howe was the chief engineer for the 1967 Monterey Pop Festival concert feature film and the 1968 NBC Elvis Christmas Special.[6]

In 1986 he was offered the position of Vice President (and head of the Music Department) at Columbia Pictures and was promoted to Executive Vice President in 1989 when the studio was bought by the Sony Corporation. In 1992 he left, and returned to recording independent music and film scores.


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  4. ^ Coffee, Hoyt (Summer 1998). "Bones Howe". Georgia Tech Alumni Magazine. Georgia Tech Alumni Association. 75 (1). ISSN 1061-9747. Archived from the original on 2002-12-11. Retrieved 2015-10-29.
  5. ^ Hogan, Ed. "Bones Howe Biography". Allmusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved 18 March 2014.
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