Back in Los Angeles, Mr. Spector worked with Sisters Paris, a local trilogy, to produce “I Love How You Love Me,” an echo-filled feather with silk strings that rose to number five on the charts.
Mr. Spector got the gold when he started working with Crystals, a New York group he signed with Philles Records, a brand that he and Records CEO Lester Sill created in 1961, combining their first names. Mr. Spector bought Mr. Sale a year later.
With “No One Else (Like My Child)” and “Uptown” hit the top 20, Mr. Spector was eager for Crystals to record Gene Pitney’s formula “He’s a Rebel” immediately. To speed things up, he recruited the Blossoms, a popular Los Angeles backup set, and recorded it under the name Crystals, with Darlene Wright (who changed his last name to Love) in the lead. This record became the first number one that Veles achieved.
Mr. Spector arranged his singers as he pleased. He drafted Mrs. Love and another Blossom, Vanita James, to sing with Bobby Sheen in one of his more special songs, “Zip-a-Dee Doo-Dah”, which is attributed to the group Bob B. Soxx and Bluejeans. For singles “Da Doo Ron Ron” and “Then He Kissed Me,” he recruited the original Crystals, now with a new lead singer, 15-year-old Dolores Brooks, better known as LaLa. Both songs made the top 10.
The Crystals, along with Ronettes and Mrs. Love, performed the song “A Christmas Gift For You From Phil Spector,” which is a collection of holiday songs. The album, now considered Spector’s masterpiece, was released on the day of the Kennedy assassination in 1963. Mr. Spector withdrew it from sale, and it sank without a trace.
With the Righteous Brothers, the sound wall took sky-high heights, but Mr. Spector outdid himself when he put Tina Turner into the studio in 1966 to record the song “River Deep, Mountain High” that employed 21 musicians and an equal number of backup singers.