Gary Klein (born September 28, 1942 in Brooklyn, New York) is an American songwriter and Grammy nominated record producer. He graduated from Long Island University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Music.
In the era which included classic rock, pop, punk, disco, country, record producer Gary Klein was well known for working across genres and often crossing over genres such as country music legends Dolly Party and Glen Campbell with "Here You Come Again" and "Southern Nights," arguably the beginnings of country music being accepted by mainstream pop audiences.
In 1962, he co-wrote the pop hit song "Bobby’s Girl". While continuing songwriting, Klein became more interested in producing records.
In 1968, Klein produced Tim Hardin 3 Live in Concert. In 1969, Klein produced the Hardin album Suite for Susan Moore and Damion: We Are One, One, All in One.
In 1974, Mac Davis, while working on a new album wrote the song "Stop and Smell the Roses". This was a phrase Doc Severinsen had mentioned to Davis who co-credited Doc as writer of the song. However, the song was not proving an easy recording and as a young record producer Klein was asked by Columbia if he'd like to give it a shot at recording the song. Thus, the song was produced by two producers. Ultimately the Klein version won out. It went to #1 on Billboard Magazine's Adult Contemporary charts and was a top 10 pop hit.
In 1975, Klein recorded Johnny Cash's album John R. Cash. In an attempt to try something new and revive his career the "Columbia bosses" wanted Cash to record other people's material, covers. It did not prove successful. Cash later blamed it on the "bosses," finding no fault in the production. He mentioned he'd work again with Klein down the line.
In 1976-1977, Klein began working with Glen Campbell. This resulted in the pop and country #1 hit "Southern Nights". Upon Campbell's crossover to the pop charts, Dolly Parton and RCA Records wondered if he could do the same for her.
In 1977, Klein produced Dolly Parton's classic pop hit album Here You Come Again. It was the first of three albums he'd produce for Parton resulting in country and pop hit records.
In 1976, Barbra Streisand had just won an Academy Award for her song "Evergreen". Klein began working with Streisand in 1977 on Streisand Superman. "My Heart Belongs to Me" hit #1 on the Adult Contemporary charts and #4 on Billboard's top 100.
In 1978, Streisand's Songbird album was released. It proved another double platinum album and at this point, Streisand was doing an album a year with Klein.
In 1979-80 Klein produced Streisand's Wet album. This included the #1 single "Enough is Enough", a smash-hit duet with Donna Summer, which in its own way was the end of the disco era. Gary Klein is the only record producer to work on more than one album with Barbra Streisand (three).
The following are some of the artists Klein was credited as a producer, composer, or writer:
Barbra Streisand ("Streisand Superman" "Enough is Enough" w/Donna Summer, "Songbird," "Wet")
Glen Campbell ("Southern Nights", "Has the World Gone Crazy")
Dolly Parton ("Here You Come Again," "Heartbreaker," "Dolly, Dolly, Dolly")
The Marshall Tucker Band
Charlie Daniels Band
Gary Lewis and the Playboys
The Weather Girls
Dr. Buzzard's Original Savannah Band
The Osmond Brothers
Mott The Hoople
Dr. Buzzard's Original Savannah Band
Billy and Charles
Soundtracks: The Eyes of Laura Mars (Faye Dunaway); The Pursuit of D.B. Cooper (Treat Williams), Bear Bryant Story (Gary Busey); Growing Pains (Television, Alan Thicke, Kirk Cameron)
Klein stopped producing records in 1990 and began 20-year career as an executive at EMI Music Publishing.