Some of the biggest names in music have taken to social media to mourn the loss of legendary recording engineer Al Schmitt, who died on Monday (26 April). He was 91.
Benson’s triple-platinum Breezin’ was recorded by Schmitt in 1976. On Facebook, the jazz guitar legend wrote, “The world lost a musical genius today. I lost my musical brother. I will forever be grateful for a lifetime of great memories and fantastic music we made together.”
The world lost a musical genius today. I lost my musical brother. I will forever be grateful for a lifetime of great memories and fantastic music we made together.
Toto guitarist Steve Lukather remembered Schmitt in a tweet earlier today (28 April). “Gonna miss you bad Al Schmitt! Loved you since 1977 and there will never be another,” he wrote. “Much Love and God Bless. Today sounds a lot less good.”
Gonna miss you bad Al Schmitt!
Loved you since 1977 and there will never be another.
Much Love and God Bless.
Today sounds a lot less good.
— Steve Lukather (@stevelukather) April 27, 2021
Steve Perry, former frontman of Journey, credited Schmitt for helping one of his solo tunes, October In New York, come together.
“I was hanging at one of Al’s sessions, and I met composer Patrick Williams. I asked if there were any words to these amazing strings I was listening to. I was told Patrick had just written the composition and simply wanted to record it,” Perry wrote in a tweet.
“Al and Patrick gave me an ‘end of day’ stereo board mix and some weeks later at Patrick’s home, he and his composer assistant Jason Lee and I used that stereo music track to write and record October In New York. That music track Al recorded is on my Traces LP.”
One of My biggest heroes in my life passed last night at 91.
Al Schmitt was an amazing recording Engineer and Mixer.
He recorded many of Sam Cooke's hits.
Over the years we became friends.
— Steve Perry (@StevePerryMusic) April 27, 2021
Other tributes, from Brian Wilson, Tower Of Power, Alan Parsons and more, below:
I feel bad about Al Schmitt passing. Al was an industry giant and a great engineer who worked with some of the greatest artists ever, and I’m honored to have worked with him on my Gershwin album.
Love & Mercy, Brian pic.twitter.com/5CdvdTgocr
— Brian Wilson (@BrianWilsonLive) April 27, 2021
We in Tower of Power send our heartfelt condolences to the wife and family of our beloved engineer and friend Al…
So Sad. Al was an inspiration to us all. RIP to Al Schmitt , a true genius of sound. pic.twitter.com/lNUF0xHmWQ
— Alan Parsons (@alanparsons) April 27, 2021