was one of the most successful producers of the 1980s, helming massive hits for acts including Bon Jovi
, and Loverboy
. Born in Vancouver, British Columbia on December 30, 1949, Fairbairn
learned to play the trumpet at age five, and as a teen appeared in a series of local R&B groups. He built his reputation as a producer while with his band Prism, earning the first of three Canadian Juno "Producer of the Year" awards for his work on their 1980 album Young and Restless
; his commercial breakthrough followed that same year with Loverboy, as their self-titled debut LP launched the international hits "Turn Me Loose" and "The Kid Is Hot Tonite." Subsequent efforts for Blue Öyster Cult
(1983's Revolution by Night
) and Krokus
) solidified Fairbairn
's position as one of the top producers in the hard rock arena, and in 1986 he reached his commercial pinnacle with Bon Jovi'
s Slippery When Wet
, which sold over 12 million copies.
Together with protege Bob Rock
established Vancouver's Little Mountain Sound as one of the top recording studios in North America; with his next major production, Aerosmith
's 1987 effort Permanent Vacation
, he generated a series of hits -- including "Dude (Looks Like a Lady)," "Angel," and "Rag Doll" -- which vaulted the venerable group back to the top of the charts. Fairbairn
also helmed Aerosmith'
s follow-up, 1989's Pump
, an even bigger hit which reached sales in excess of seven million. AC/DC's The Razor's Edge
followed in 1990, as did Poison
's Flesh and Blood
; from there he went on to work with everyone from the Scorpions
, and in 1995 produced Van Halen'
. A year later, Fairbairn
shifted gears to helm the Cranberries' To the Faithful Departed
, and Psycho Circus
, from the reunited Kiss
, followed in 1998. After wrapping up sessions for a forthcoming release from Yes
on May 17, 1999, he was found dead in his Vancouver home; Fairbairn
was just 49.