Ongoing History of New Music

Published on February 5th, 2016 | by Alan Cross

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The Ongoing History of New Music, Episode 743: Legendary Recording Studios

I love the feel of recording studios.

Not that long ago, if you wanted to make an album, you needed rent a big, expensive recording studio. In addition to paying an hourly, daily, weekly or monthly rate, you had to pay for a producer, an engineer or two, all the recording tape you used and any catering that was required.  It could get very expensive very quickly.

But that was okay because back then, the music industry was awash in money.  Your label would happily advance you the money to cover your recording costs because they were just going to take it out of profits derived from the future sales of that album.

Because there was so much money to be made, a lot of big, expensive recording studios were built.  Some were in big centres like New York, LA and London. Others were chateaus out in the countryside or maybe on an exotic island.  Even a medium-sized city could boast half a dozen solid studios.

These days, it’s possible to make a very good-sounding album on a laptop in your bedroom.  Heck, I know of some people who have made credible-sounding records on their smart phones/

But this doesn’t mean that big-time recording studios are now irrelevant.  There are some things, some sounds and some needs that require a specialized recording studio environment.  But then there are those facilities that have been forced to shut down, killed by the massive changes to the music industry and the high cost of maintaining a studio when bookings are down.

Still, there’s something really, really cool about recording studios, places where legendary songs and iconic albums were created.  Ad I’d like to take you on a tour some of these studios and listen to some of the music that was made within those walls.  Some of these places are still with us while some are only memories.

Here are some legendary recording studios, past and present, and the songs recorded there.

  • Dead Inside/Muse (Warehouse Studio)
  • Boiled Frogs/Alexisonfire (Metalworks)
  • Temptation/Tea Party (Le Studio)
  • Swimming/Martha and the Muffins (Grant Avenue)
  • Come As You Are/Nirvana (Sound City)
  • Bang a Gong/Power Station (Power Station)
  • China Girl/Iggy Pop (Château d’Hérouville)
  • Synchronicity II/Police (AIR Studios Monserrat)
  • Shake It Out/Florence + The Machine (Abbey Road)

The Ongoing History of New Music can be heard on the following stations:

We’re still looking for more affiliates in Vancouver, Kamloops, Kelowna, Regina, Saskatoon, Brandon, Windsor,  Montreal, Charlottetown, Moncton, Fredericton, and St John’s and anywhere else with a transmitter. If you’re in any of those markets and you want the show, lemme know and I’ll see what I can do.

If you’re in the US and you want to stream the show, I wish I could help. A performing rights organization called SESAC has made threatening noises about suing non-American radio stations who dare stream into the US without paying crazy fees. Most Canadian broadcasters had no choice but to geo-block their streams. But hey, if you know of an American station that would like to take the show, contact me and we’ll make it a priority.

Oh, and good news: The show will start running on OneFM in Singapore in May. From there. we’re hoping to go deeper into Asia and the make a run at Australia and New Zealand.

Anyone else? Love to hear from you. Just email me at alan@alancross.ca.




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About the Author

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker.

In his 30+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.


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