"If you watch the Monterey Pop film, you can see the look on the audience. That's pretty much what we all had. We were like Dylan's Mr. Jones at that point. Something was happening and we were in on it for the first time."
Born in 1933, Lou Adler is an American record producer, manager, and director who was a major player in the West Coast pop music scene and whose contributions to rock-and-roll in the 50's, 60's and 70's were huge. He was associated with many big-time rock-and-roll acts, from the late 1950's when he managed Jan & Dean in partnership with Herb Alpert, up through the mid-1970's. He produced the likes of Sam Cooke, The Mamas and the Papas, Johnny Rivers, Barry McGuire, Scott McKenzie, Spirit, Carole King, The Weaver Temptations and Cheech and Chong. To top it all off, Adler even has songwriting in his credits (many times under the name Barbara Campbell). To give an example, Sam Cooke's "Only Sixteen" is his composition.
In 1964 Lou Adler started Dunhill Productions, which later became the record label Dunhill Records, where he was President and chief record producer from 1964 until 1967. While running Dunhill he hired P. F. Sloan and Steve Barri to write and produce songs, and one of the artists he signed was Barry McGuire, formerly of the New Christy Minstrels. McGuire recorded the song "Eve Of Destruction", written by Sloan and on which he was backed by the original members of the Grass Roots, and the tune reached Number One on the charts late in 1965. Following that up for Dunhill and Adler were the The Mamas and The Papas, who had six songs in the top ten between 1966 and 1967.
During this time Adler also produced some acts that were not associated with Dunhill, such as Johnny Rivers, and continued his relationship with Jan & Dean. In 1967 Adler sold Dunhill for the tidy sum of three million dollars to ABC Records, and became involved with the production of the Monterey Pop Festival and the film version of that event as well.
He then launched the Ode label, which was successful right out of the gate, having a big hit single with Scott McKenzie's "San Francisco (Be Sure To Wear Flowers in Your Hair)" and the band Spirit, which had a top forty hit with "I Got A Line On You" in 1969. The most successful artist Adler produced at Ode was Carole King, however, who had a Number One hit in 1971 with "It's Too Late", then followed up with the Adler-produced "I Feel The Earth Move", "So Far Away", "Sweet Seasons", "Been To Canaan", "Jazzman", and "Nightingale". These ultimately netted Carole King four Grammy Awards.
In 1974, Adler helped to produce the American stage version of the Rocky Horror Show as well as the movie version of the Rocky Horror Picture Show, and in 1978, he directed the cult-classic movie Up In Smoke, starring Cheech & Chong. These days Lou Adler is less involved in the music business and is the owner of The Roxy Theatre in West Hollywood, California.
Opening quote taken from a Marc Cabrera interview with Lou Adler firstname.lastname@example.org