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George Martin Net Worth, Biography & Wiki 2017
(Sir) George Henry Martin was born on 3 January 1926 in Highbury, North London England, and passed away on 8 March 2016 at his home in Wiltshire. From the ’60s he was known as ‘the fifth Beatle’, so critically involved was he in the arrangement and production of their music, for which he was justly recognised and appreciated, but actually he was far more than that.
So just how rich was George Martin? Sources estimate that at the time of his passing, George’s net worth was in excess of $400 million, accumulated during his career in the music industry, which eventually spanned over six decades.
George Martin Net Worth $400 Million
George was educated at St Joseph’s elementary school and then St Ignatius’ College, and when evacuated during World War Two, at Bromley Grammar. He joined the Royal Navy’s Fleet Air Arm in 1943 although never saw active service, and used his demobilisation bonus in 1947 to pay for piano and oboe studies at Guildford School of Music and Drama – he had actually taken piano lessons from eight years of age, but didn’t consider a career in music until sometime later.
On graduation he worked briefly for the BBC music department, then joined EMI/Parlophone in 1950, becoming head of Parlophone Records in 1955 although specialising in classical and jazz music, and comedy albums with such as The Goons. His producing “Beyond the Fringe”(1960), based on Oxbridge ‘radicals’ of the time including Peter Cook and Dudley Moore really brought him to notice, and set his net worth rising steadily. George’s great strength was his depth of knowledge and the ability to use his talents – he was a musician, composer, producer, arranger, conductor, and audio engineer, so was of enormous value to singers and musicians when it came to recordings, including in the burgeoning pop genre of the time.
In 1962 he agreed to sign The Beatles after other labels had turned down the group – hearing considerable promise in their composition “Please, Please Me” which became their first number one hit – and is credited with supervising the arrangement of many of the group’s tracks over the the seven succeeding years that they were together, from the relatively raw talent of the group members to the refined article that was eventually released. Many times George thought ‘outside the (pop)box’ – particularly notable were such as “Yesterday” with a string quartet, a piccolo trumpet solo in “Eleanor Rigby”, strings only to accompany “Strawberry Fields Forever”, and vari-speed editing with orchestra in “A Day in the Life”. Of course George was also instrumental in many of The Beatle’s mainstream hits too, significantly refining the group’s song-writing and musical talent to produce a string of number one hits on charts around the world. Very often he conducted the orchestral accompaniments to the tracks being recorded.
However, George Martin also worked with many other prominent music stars, many of whom say that they were extremely appreciative of his ability to get the best out of themselves personally and their music. He produced “Alfie” for Cilla Black, and for other British artists such as Billy J. Kramer and the Dakotas, Jeff Beck, Dire Straits, Peter Gabriel, Sting, Elton John and Kate Bush among others. He was also in demand from artists from the other side of the Atlantic, for such as Ella Fitzgerald, Stan Getz, Neil Sedaka, Kenny Rogers, Carly Simon and Celine Dion. Significantly, George is the only producer to score number one hits in four decades, on both sides of the Atlantic. Of course this constant work meant that George’s net worth increased substantially.
Additionally, Martin composed, arranged and produced film scores from the early 1960s; the instrumental score for The Beatles film “A Hard Day’s Night” (1964), won an Academy Award nomination, as did his collaboration with Paul McCartney on the James Bond film score for “Live and Let Die”(1973), which he composed. Other film scores included “Pulp”(1972) starring Michael Caine and Mickey Rooney, and the John Schlesinger – directed “Honky Tonk Freeway”(1981) among many others.
Of course George Martin was also an author – “All You Need is Ears”(1979) with co-writer Jeremy Hornsby documented his time with The Beatles and other artists to that point. The self-explanatory “Summer of Love: The Making of Sgt Pepper” written with William Pearson was released in 1993, and his autobiography “Playback” was published in 2002. All contributed to his net worth.
George received many honours and awards – perhaps the highlight was his knighthood bestowed in 1996. He received seven Grammys, two BRIT Awards, and was inducted into the Rock ‘n’ Roll Hall of Fame in 1999. Among other degrees, Oxford University awarded him an honorary Doctorate of Music in 2011. He was also honoured by a BBC documentary “Produced by George Martin” in 2011, detailing his whole life with contributions from many of the stars of entertainment who he had worked with.
In his personal life, in January 1948 and while still at the Guildford Academy, George Martin married Sheena Chisholm, with whom he had two children. He subsequently married Judy Lockhart-Smith in 1966, by whom he is survived, and they also had two children.