Phil Ramone, the producer to the superstars like Paul McCartney, Barbra Streisand, Paul Simon and Billy Joel, died in a Manhattan hospital while being treated for an Aortic Aneurysm.
The Aorta is the largest artery in the human body. An Aneurysm will cause death unless treated immediately and sadly for Phil Ramone he did not get to the hospital early enough to be saved.
Ramone was rushed to the New York Presbyterian Hospital on Saturday, March 30. Cause of death was listed as a brain aneurysm.
South African born 79-year old Ramone has won 14-Grammy Awards for his work over the past 50-years. His career took off in the 70’s when he was the producer of Billy Joel’s ‘The Stranger’. The album made Joel a superstar. He went on to produce all of Joel’s albums through to ‘The Bridge’ in 1986.
Ramone produced for Chicago, Aretha Franklin, John Lennon, Liza Minelli, Barry Manilow, Stevie Wonder, Elton John and B.B. King. One of his last works was recording George Michael’s 2011 Symphonica Tour.
He is also credited as the person who recorded Marilyn Monroe singing ‘Happy Birthday To You’ to President John F. Kennedy.
Ramone produced Paul McCartney’s ‘Press To Play’ and ‘Flowers In The Dirt’ albums. In a statement Paul McCartney said, “Phil was a great friend of mine for many years. We first worked together when I recorded ‘Another Day’ in New York at A & R Studios. He was a very sweet man who combined this with expert knowledge of both engineering and production. I’ll always remember him as a great friend that I knew, loved and admired over the many years that we worked and played together.”
Phil supervised the recording of the ‘Flashdance’ soundtrack and co-wrote the song ‘Imagination’, sung by Laura Branigan. The movie also featured singer Karen Kamon who Phil met while working on the film. Karen recorded the song ‘Manhunt’ for the soundtrack. She became Phil’s wife in 1984. The couple had three children including son Matthew Ramone who now runs the family production business.