George Martin, the man who played a vital role in shaping The Beatles' recorded music, was born in Holloway, London, on 3 January 1926.
Born George Henry Martin, he became interested in music from the age of six after his family acquired a piano. Two years later he persuaded his parents to allow him to have lessons, although these were short-lived and he later taught himself to play.
After graduating from the Guildhall School of Music and Drama he worked briefly at the BBC's classical music department, and in 1950 joined EMI as an assistant to Parlophone boss Oscar Preuss. When Preuss retired in 1955, Martin took over as head of Parlophone.
Following an audition and recording session on 6 June 1962, George Martin signed The Beatles to Parlophone. The pairing began a chain of events which changed the face of popular music immeasurably.