Mickie Most - a brilliant producer
Mickie was one of the best music producers in the world. He worked with The Animals, The Arrows, Herman's Hermits, Donovan, Lulu, Suzi Quatro, Hot Chocolate and the Jeff Beck Group.
When we were kids, we lived next door to each other and later, as teenagers, we would often meet at Baker Street Station after an evening of clubbing to catch the last train to Kingsbury and walk home together.
One night, Mickie told me he was going to South Africa and, being the entrepreneur he was, asked me if I would join him there to set up a television station. It was a great opportunity, but I didn't recognise it.
Mickie and his wife Christina spent four years in South Africa and, instead of setting up a TV Station, he formed a pop group, Mickie Most and his Playboys. The band scored 11 consecutive No. 1 singles there. That was the start of his fantastic career.
When he came back to the UK, he set up RAK Records with his partner Peter Grant. Mickie was one of the first producers to own the rights to his own records and RAK Studios, opened in 1976 in St John's Wood, remains active to this day.
One evening at his house, he suggested going to a west end club to meet Mick Jagger’s brother. I was familiar with this fabulous car- a Rolls Royce - because I had been on a course at their factory. They always wanted to make sure a Rolls Royce would be treated with respect when used in films.
He started playing the Beatles. The sound was the best I had ever heard because the Rolls is acoustically perfect. It sounded like the Beatles were playing on the rear shelf.
Mickie was also a panellist on the ITV talent show ‘New Faces’ where his tough assessments of contestants foreshadowed the style of Simon Cowell.
Sadly, Mickie died from cancer in 2003. I think back fondly to the times I spent with him and, most of all, he taught me a very important lesson:
Opportunities are everywhere, be positive, recognise them, you can do it!