Music producer, murderer Phil Spector dead at 81

Music producer Phil Spector dies at age 81

Music producer Phil Spector, known for his “Wall of Sound” and who was later convicted of murder, has died. He was 81.

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California prison officials confirmed he died of natural causes at an outside hospital. A medical examiner will determine his official cause of death.

Spector, an eccentric music producer who helped develop hit songs in the early 1960s for the Crystals, the Ronettes and the Righteous Brothers, was known for creating the “Wall of Sound” that merged vocal harmonies with lavish orchestral arrangements.

He was convicted of murdering actress Lana Clarkson in 2003 at his Los Angeles mansion. Clarkson, star of “Barbarian Queen” and other B-movies, was found shot to death in Spector’s home. He was sentenced in 2009 to 19 years to life.

Although many sources list Spector’s birth year as 1940, court documents indicate he was born in 1939.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.