Studio engineer Bruce Swedien, who recorded and mixed all of Michael Jackson's best-known solo albums -- Off the Wall, Thriller, Bad and Dangerous -- has died at 86. His daughter Roberta shared the sad news on Facebook, writing "My dad, Bruce Swedien, passed away peacefully last night, November 16th. He was 86. A legend in the music industry for over 65 years and 5-time Grammy winner, he was known for his work with Quincy Jones, Michael Jackson and many more. He had a long life full of love, great music, big boats and a beautiful marriage. We will celebrate that life. He was loved by everyone."
Quincy Jones wrote a nice tribute to Bruce on Instagram: "I am absolutely devastated to learn the news that we lost my dear brother-in-arms, the legendary Bruce Swedien. There are not enough words to express how much Bruce meant to me…He was without question the absolute best engineer in the business, & for more than 70 years I wouldn’t even think about going into a recording session unless I knew Bruce was behind the board. Along with the late great Rod Temperton, we reached heights that we could have never imagined & made history together. I have always said it’s no accident that more than four decades later no matter where I go in the world, in every club, like clockwork at the witching hour you hear “Billie Jean,” “Beat It,” “Wanna Be Starting Something,” & “Thriller.” That was the sonic genius of Bruce Swedien, & to this day I can hear artists trying to replicate him. I’m going to miss your presence every single day “Svensk”, but I will cherish every moment we shared together laughin’, lovin', livin’, & givin’...Rest In Peace my brother."
In addition to his work with Michael Jackson and Quincy Jones, Swedien also worked on recordings by Count Basie, Art Blakey, Duke Ellington, Dizzy Gillespie, Michael McDonald, Donna Summer, Chaka Khan, Barbra Streisand, Jennifer Lopez, Herb Alpert, The Chi-Lites, New Edition, Eddie Harris, The Brothers Johnson, and many more.
Rest in peace, Bruce.