Iconic music producer and engineer, Martin Birch, has passed away at the age of 71.
Birch, who built a reputation like no other in the modern history of British music, famously worked with the likes of Fleetwood Mac, Black Sabbath, Iron Maiden, Deep Purple, Rainbow, Whitesnake, Blue Öyster Cult and many more.
The sad news of Birch’s death was confirmed by David Coverdale, the singer of Whitesnake, who took to social media: “It is with a very heavy heart I’ve just had verified my very dear friend and producer Martin Birch has passed away,” he said.
Adding: “Martin was a huge part of my life… helping me from the first time we met through until Slide It In. My thoughts and prayers to his family, friends and fans.”
Having started his life in the music industry as an audio engineer, Birch went on to establish himself within the ‘Deep Purple Camp’ before working on Black Sabbath’s ninth studio album Heaven and Hell and announcing himself on the biggest stage. From there, the door had been very much open as some of alternative music’s biggest names came calling.
Incredibly, Birch worked on five Fleetwood Mac albums, 11 Deep Purple projects, nine Whitesnake records, 10 for Iron Maiden, two for Black Sabbath and countless others.
“I certainly think that you can only make the most out of a band if you know it really well, very much in depth,” Birch once said in an interview with Best magazine. “Occasional producers who make an album with a band, then move on to another, are bound to do something pretty shallow. The results are always brilliant, excellent at the time, but you realise later that the true colours of the band don’t come out and the album loses quickly its prestige.
“I don’t consider myself a super-technician, what I do is to me pretty simple, but the fact that I’m used to the bands I have worked with helps me to know instantly what they want, or even what they can achieve, even if they don’t realise it clearly themselves,” he added. “Or maybe bands trust me over long periods of time just because they find me a particularly likeable character.”