Micheal Pela, GRAMMY Award-winning producer and longtime Sade collaborator, has died aged 72.
Sade took to Twitter to confirm Pela had died on July 23 following a sudden illness, while travelling Italy.
Pela started his career at CTS Studios where he assisted on The Who‘s 1969 album ‘Tommy’ and Electric Light Orchestra‘s 1974 album ‘Eldorado’.
In the 80s, Pela began working as chief engineer at Power Plant Studios working with Boy George, Gang of Four, The Style Council and finally meeting Sade.
Pela’s friendship with Sade saw him contribute to the band’s tracks, ‘Nothing Can Come Between Us’, ‘Love Is Stronger Than Pride’, ‘Paradise’ and ‘Turn My Back On You’.
In 1993 Pela was awarded with a Grammy for co-production and engineering on Sade’s album ‘No Ordinary Love’ and then later in 2002, another Grammy for co-production and recording on Sade’s ‘Lovers Rock’.
Band members of Sade, including Sade Adu, Stuart Matthewman, Andrew Hale and Paul Spencer Denman have released a joint statement on the news.
The statement reads: “It’s hard to imagine a world without Mike, but he’s a vital force within everything we’ve done, and everything to come, and remains really, truly, in our hearts. There’s no other like him, not if we were to look forever. We shared absolute trust."
Michael Pela— Sade (@SadeOfficial) July 25, 2022
13 January 1950 - 23 July 2022 pic.twitter.com/3ZOVB7eg3F
"He gave us a safe place so we could be fearless. He came with no ego; soulful, constant, funny, resilient, kind, and brilliant. We’ll try our best to make him proud.”
Becky Buckle is Mixmag's Digital Intern, follow her on Twitter