(born Phil Campbell
, November 5, 1936) is a record producer and arranger who is most famous for his association with a number of country artists, most notably Tammy Wynette
. Sherrill and business partner Glenn Sutton
are regarded as the defining influences of the countrypolitan
sound, a smooth amalgamation of pop and country music that was hugely popular during the late 1960s and throughout the '70s. On February 23, 2010 Sherrill was selected for induction into the Country Music Hall of Fame
along with Don Williams, Ferlin Husky, and Jimmy Dean. The actual induction will be held later in the year.
Born in rural Alabama, Sherrill became initially interested in music, particularly jazz and blues, learning to play the saxophone. During his teenage years, he led a blues band, and later signed a solo record deal, though this led to little success.
In 1962, Sherrill moved to Nashville
, where he was initially was hired by Sam Phillips
to manage the Nashville studios of Sun Records
. When Sun sold its Nashville studio the following year, Sherrill moved to Epic Records
, as an in-house producer. Given his limited exposure to country music up to that point, his production incorporated many elements of pop music production. (His sound has often been described as a country equivalent to Phil Spector
's Wall of Sound
.) His first success was with country artist David Houston
. Houston's recording of Sherrill's and Glenn Sutton