Phil Spector, famed music producer and murderer, dead at 81

National and World

California state prison officials said he died Saturday of natural causes at a hospital

Phil Spector 1989

egendary record producer Phil Spector, left, laughs with Atlantic Records co-founder Ahmet Ertegun after his induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame at the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel in New York, Jan. 18, 1989. Spector rose to fame when he created the “Wall of Sound” recording technique for the Ronettes and other “girl groups” of the early 1960s. He went on to produce albums for such varied artists as the Beatles, Billy Joel and the Ramones. (AP Photo/Susan Ragan)

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Phil Spector, the eccentric and revolutionary music producer who transformed rock music with his “Wall of Sound” method whose later was convicted of murder, has died at age 81.

California state prison officials said he died Saturday of natural causes at a hospital.

Spector was convicted of murdering actress Lana Clarkson in 2003 at his castle-like mansion on the edge of Los Angeles. After a trial in 2009, he was given a 19 years-to-life sentence.

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