8. He doesn’t know how to work a sound board. He doesn’t read music or play any instruments, but Rick Rubin knows what makes a good song and great records. That’s why this producer is called a musical guru and his three-story, 1923 Spanish villa is considered one of the most deeply steeped venues in music history. After starting Def Jam records with Russell Simmons, Rubin has continued to reinvent the music industry, marrying rap with metal and by bringing artists to record ground-breaking, career-shaping music in his mammoth studio: Johnny Cash, Neil Diamond, Jakob Dylan, Dixie Chicks, Slayer, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Jay-Z. While the guru now prefers to live on the beach at Malibu, his home continues to be a mecca for Grammy-making music. 10. This is the cradle of the Motown Sound. “Hitsville U.S.A.” — a former photographers’ studio — was Motown’s first headquarters which Motown founder Berry Gordy bought in 1959. What came next was a recording studio where a non-stop creative churn filled the airwaves with a sound that changed radio and the music industry with a stable of uber-talent. Smokey Robinson, Diana Ross & The Supremes, Stevie Wonder, the Jackson 5, Marvin Gaye, Tammi Terrell, The Four Tops and The Temptations, who won the recording studio its belated first Grammy in 1972 for “Papa Was A Rolling Stone.
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