Lou Adler has won Grammys and worked with greats like Sam Cooke and Carole King in his storied career, but the producer and owner of Los Angeles’ venerable Roxy Theatre had to wait until last night to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. “It’s a real nice feeling, you know, no matter what you think about it,” Adler said. “Every year goes by, if you don’t make it, you just say, ‘Well, it doesn’t matter.’ But it really matters, and you find that out when they finally say, ‘You’re in.'”
Adler also shared an old anecdote about fellow inductee Randy Newman. Upon meeting a teenage Newman, Adler was told the youngster wanted to become a songwriter. Newman’s producer Lenny Waronker asked Adler to bestow some helpful knowledge to the budding artist. “I said, ‘Yeah, here’s what I’ll do,’ and I gave him a stack of Carole King demos,” Adler said.
Alder also reflected on his legacy as a producer. “I never had a particular sound. There was no Lou Adler sound like there’s a Phil Spector sound,” he said. “I always tried to make the records about the artists and their particular sound.”
Interview by Matt Diehl; text by RJ Cubarrubia.