Mutt LangeROCK SENSIBILITY TO COUNTRY ACTS 10/02/2007 11:49 AM Eastern
No list of country or rock music's most influential producers would be complete without Robert John “Mutt” Lange. His 1980 production of AC/DC's landmark Back In Black was arguably one of the greatest (and finest-sounding) hard rock albums ever released. From there, Lange generated an unstoppable series of mega-Platinum AOR rock album staples with AC/DC, Def Leppard, The Cars, Foreigner and more. When Lange arrived in Nashville to produce a little-known female artist, Shania Twain, the Music Row buzz was generally skeptical that he could deliver an album on a Nashville-biz schedule and with a Nashville-biz budget that would fly on country radio. But Lange gave Twain (who is also his wife) a load of hits that drew much from the song forms that had turned Def Leppard into AOR standards. Before you could say “arena rock,” Nashville was cranking out records that paid tribute to Lange's production vision. To date, 111 million albums have been sold sporting Lange's production credit. And his meticulousness to achieving hard-hitting sonic perfection is the stuff of industry legend. Not bad for a guy named Mutt.
— Rick Clark, Mix Nashville editor