Sir George Martin, CBE (forget the royal definition, this really stands for Certified Beatle Expert), turned 86 this week.

The "Fifth Beatle" was born on January 3, 1926, in London, England, and although he scoffs at the title, he can't deny the fact that he was involved in all The Beatles' original albums in a very big way, and he'll always be thought of as a true member of the band. 

Reportedly, Martin wasn't overly impressed with The Beatles' sound and in first auditioning them in 1962, he asked them if there was anything they didn't like, to which George Harrison responded, "Well, there's your tie for a start."  John and Paul added their own cracks and according to Bob Spitz in 2005's  "The Beatles: The Biography" book, George Martin thought he should sign the band for their wit alone.

After signing them to their first recording contract, Martin's guiding hand helped sculpt the Beatles raw talent into the genius it would become and the sound beloved by so many throughout the world.

Producer, arranger, composer, musician, and conductor, as well as 1999 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Inductee, Sir George hasn't just worked with The Beatles, but with other great artists, as well (America, Wings, and Jeff Beck, among many others).

Happy birthday, Sir George Martin, on behalf of Beatles--and music--- fans everywhere!