Robert Jens Rock (born April 19, 1954) is a Canadian record producer, sound engineer and musician, best known for producing rock bands and music artists such as Metallica, Mötley Crüe, Bon Jovi, Aerosmith, the Tragically Hip, the Cult, 311, Our Lady Peace, Bryan Adams, the Offspring, Michael Bublé, Black Veil Brides, David Lee Roth, and Ron Sexsmith.

Bob Rock
Rock presenting at the 2009 Juno Awards
Rock presenting at the 2009 Juno Awards
Background information
Birth nameRobert Jens Rock
Born (1954-04-19) April 19, 1954 (age 69)
OriginWinnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
  • Bass
  • guitar
  • keyboards
  • vocals
Years active1976–present

Early life edit

Rock was born in Winnipeg, Manitoba in 1954, where he grew up and was a big hockey fan.[1] He discovered music in the 1960s and later moved to British Columbia with this family.

Payolas and Rock and Hyde edit

Rock began his music career in Langford, British Columbia (a suburb of Victoria), as a guitarist playing with friends William Alexander and Paul Hyde in the former's household basement. After high school graduation, Rock left Victoria and became the co-founder of the Payolas, who became well known with the success of their 1980s hit, "Eyes of a Stranger", which was used as part of the soundtrack of the movie Valley Girl starring Nicolas Cage.

In 1983, the Payolas won the Juno Award for Single of the Year. Rock also worked as an assistant engineer at Little Mountain Sound in Vancouver.[2] In 1987, the band (who had by then changed their name to Paul Hyde and the Payolas) again changed their name to Rock and Hyde and had two hit singles in Canada with the song "Dirty Water" (#20[3]), which also charted on Billboard's Hot 100, and "I Will (#40[4]). In 2007, the Payolas became briefly active once more as a touring and recording act, releasing the EP Langford Part One.

Production career edit

Rock is well known as a producer for heavy metal bands such as Metallica and Mötley Crüe. He has also worked with Aerosmith, Bon Jovi, Blue Murder, the Moffatts, Cher, the Cult, David Lee Roth, Skid Row, Veruca Salt, Nina Gordon, the Offspring, 311, Our Lady Peace, the Tragically Hip, the Tea Party, Lostprophets, American Hi-Fi, Simple Plan, Tonic, Nelly Furtado, Jann Arden, and Ron Sexsmith.

Rock briefly returned to performing, forming the band Rockhead with ex-Payolas drummer Chris Taylor. The band released one self-titled album and two singles before splitting up. Rock produced the five finalist songs of CBC Sports's Hockey Night in Canada Anthem Challenge in late 2008.[5][6]

Metallica edit

In 1990, Rock was chosen to produce Metallica's Diamond-certified (16× Platinum) self-titled album (commonly referred to as The Black Album). He would subsequently produce Load (1996), ReLoad (1997), the new material for the band's cover album, Garage Inc. (1998), and St. Anger (2003).

Rock also wrote and played all of the bass guitar parts on St. Anger, as Jason Newsted left Metallica in January 2001, and was the bassist for the band's few live performances until Robert Trujillo joined the band in February 2003. Rock was featured prominently in the 2004 documentary film Metallica: Some Kind of Monster, which dealt with Metallica's internal strife and their struggles with the creative process during the recording of St. Anger.

In February 2006, Metallica chose producer Rick Rubin to produce their next album, ending the band's long-time relationship with Rock, being 13 years. At Metallica's 30th Anniversary Concert on December 10, 2011, Rock joined Metallica onstage, and performed bass alongside Trujillo on the songs "Dirty Window" and "Frantic".

Awards edit

Rock's career both as a producer and musician was recognized at the 2007 Juno Awards ceremony in Saskatoon for his lifetime contribution to popular music. He was inducted into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame by the Canadian Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (CARAS). "Bob is a musical craftsman whose wide range of talents show no signs of slowing," said Melanie Berry, CARAS President. "He has helped to define rock as we know it today, and we are very proud to recognize him in the Canadian Music Hall of Fame."[citation needed]

Rock has received 4x multi-platinum for "Wanted Dead or Alive" and 2x multi-platinum for "Livin' on a Prayer" by Bon Jovi.[7]

Rock confirmed his acceptance of the award: "It is an honour to join great producers like Bob Ezrin, Bruce Fairbairn, Daniel Lanois, Jack Richardson, and David Foster in the Canadian Music Hall of Fame" said Rock. "They are all giants of the industry, and to be recognized, means that I had to have worked with truly great artists. I thank them for their confidence and inspiration."[citation needed]

Rock has received nominations for 17 Juno Awards in various categories, including "Producer of the Year",[8] "Recording Engineer of the Year", "Composer of the Year", and "Entertainer of the Year". He has won on numerous occasions for both his production work and his work with Payola$ and Rock and Hyde.

Rock last won Producer of the Year in 2005 for Simple Plan's "Welcome to My Life". He was nominated for 2007 Producer of the Year for his work on The Tragically Hip's album World Container. In 2014, Rock won a Grammy Award for Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album for his work on Michael Bublé's album To Be Loved. In 2023, he won a Grammy Award for “Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album” for his work on Bublé's album Higher.

Discography edit

Musician edit

Producer edit

Engineer/mixer edit

See also edit

References edit

  1. ^ "Production legend Bob Rock on 16 career-defining records". MusicRadar. March 1, 2013. Retrieved January 2, 2023.
  2. ^ Gerry Wand, Learning by Example: Larrie Londin,; retrieved August 11, 2012.
  3. ^ "RPM Top 100 Singles - April 18, 1987" (PDF).
  4. ^ "RPM Top 100 Singles - August 29, 1987" (PDF).
  5. ^ The Canadian Press (October 3, 2008). "Future hockey anthem down to the final five". Toronto Star. Retrieved April 4, 2009.
  6. ^ "Finalists named in Hockey Anthem Challenge". CBC News. October 9, 2008. Retrieved April 4, 2009.
  7. ^ "Jaxsta".
  8. ^ Larry LeBlanc (February 12, 2000). "Morissette leads Canada's Juno nomination list". Billboard. Nielsen Business Media, Inc. pp. 45–. ISSN 0006-2510.
  9. ^ Alex Hudson, "Gord Downie and Bob Rock's Collaborative Album Gets Release Date, New Single". Exclaim!, November 22, 2022.
  10. ^ "Bob Rock | Credits". AllMusic. Retrieved January 18, 2020.
  11. ^ Stenson, Elaine (March 27, 2019). "Mötley Crüe Releases 'The Dirt' Soundtrack".

External links edit

Preceded by Metallica bassist
Succeeded by