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Digital Subscriptions > MusicTech > Sept 17 > ABBEY ROAD ACCESS ALL AREAS


How do you fancy recording and possibly even working at Abbey Road Studios? It’s not as distant a dream as you might think. MusicTech gains exclusive access to the incredible facility to see two all-new studios that we can all book – plus the iconic Studios 1, 2 and 3, where everyone from The Beatles to Radiohead recorded iconic albums. We also speak to senior recordist John Barrett, who talks us through his career at the incredible facility…
The famous Abbey Road entrance, used by everyone from The Beatles to Adele
And now Abbey Road has its first new studios in decades – including this, The Gatehouse

“Good morning, gentlemen. Glad to see you all. Very light programme this morning. Please play this tune as though you’ve never heard it before.” The words from the first recording made in Studio 1 at Abbey Road Studios (or EMI studios as it was) back in 1931. They were spoken by Sir Edward Elgar, addressing an orchestra about to play Land Of Hope And Glory for the grand opening of the studio. As MusicTech is about to find out, with a rather exclusive (and very early morning) tour of Abbey Road, it was rather different back then. Elgar’s orchestra – The London Symphony – was surrounded by Art Deco wall coverings and palm trees (yes, palm trees) and on a stage. Studio 1 was a glamorous performance-based studio, far away from the space in which soundtracks to films like The Hobbit and the Harry Potter series are recorded today. Yet the facility constructed back then shares a lot with what is there now – not least the size and scope of the the current main Studios, still 1, 2 and 3, as they were back then – although, as we’ll see, there are a lot of very recent additions, including two brand-new studios.

The original plan to turn an ordinary (if vast) London townhouse into a set of studios was hatched in the summer of 1928 by Captain Lawrence Trevor Osmond ‘Ozzy’ Williams, a director of The Gramophone Company, who saw the house and huge garden as perfect for a place to build a facility for the then-growing British music scene. The Gramophone Company bought the building in 1929. Although Williams died in the summer of 1930 and didn’t see the project through, it was finally completed in November 1931. The Gramophone Company had since become Electrical Musical Industries (EMI) after merging with Columbia: EMI Studios was born.

Studio 1 is the main studio for orchestral recording and soundtrack work


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About MusicTech

The new issue of MusicTech is on sale from Thursday 17th August and we’re honoured to be the first magazine to present a feature on the brand new studio facilities at the legendary Abbey Road studios: The Gatehouse and the Penthouse. To mark this occasion we bring you a giant Abbey Road special, featuring a studio tour, a COMPLETE gear list, an interview with iconic producer John Leckie (who begun his career at AR) as well as hands on tutorials designed to show you how to re-create the Abbey Road sound at home! We’ve also got a disc packed with Abbey Road related video content for you to feast your eyes on. Elsewhere this issue we have features looking at the history of the Korg MonoPoly, 6 ways to cheat at making music as well as our usual plethora of reviews including the Pioneer Toraiz AS-1 and Novation Circuit 1.5 and a wide range of tutorial content.