Tal Herzberg, a producer, musician and Grammy-nominated recording engineer who worked with such top acts as U2, Lady Gaga, the Black Eyed Peas and Britney Spears, died April 7 of liver cancer. He was 41.
Widely known in the industry for his prowess with the Pro Tools digital recording platform, of which he was an early adapter, Herzberg was the production partner of Geffen Records chairman Ron Fair, with whom he worked for 10 years. His discography as an engineer includes numerous top 10 hits, led by the 2001 smash “Lady Marmalade,” by Christina Aguilera, Lil’ Kim, Mya & Pink, which was No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 for five weeks and won a Grammy for best pop collaboration with vocals.
Herzberg earned several Grammy nominations, including record of the year for the Peas/Justin Timberlake collaboration “Let’s Get It Started,” Vanessa Carlton’s “A Thousand Miles” and Mary J. Blige’s “Be Without You.” He also worked with acts including Pussycat Dolls, Counting Crows and Queen Latifah and discovered Orianthi, who was set to play lead guitar for Michael Jackson’s comeback concerts and appears in the documentary This Is It.
Herzberg came to the Los Angeles 18 years ago from Tel Aviv, Israel. He enrolled in the Dick Grove School of Music in Studio City and played bass in Beth Hart’s band. He worked with producers David Foster, Rob Cavallo, Antonina Armato and Tim James and was a frequently published author of technical articles on digital recording, record production and recording equipment.
Herzberg is survived by his wife, Ofrah, and young daughters Shai and Danielle. He was buried April 13 in Israel, and a memorial service is scheduled for April 14 at the offices of Interscope Geffen A&M.