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Written by Ramsey Brown.
Recording studios are truly where all the musical magic happens. They are the birthplace for beautiful sounds, historic hits, and famous musicians that we know and love today. These recording facilities are a dime a dozen with hundreds of thousands spread all across the world. Legendary moments happen in recording studios, but which ones are the most legendary and famous of them all?
In this article, we have listed the 25 best recording studios in the world as of 2021. If you are a production and recording fanatic just like us, you’ll be interested in finding out where exactly the world's best musicians choose to record. From state of the art recording equipment to million-dollar facilities, here are the world’s best recording studios, listed in no particular order:
Abbey Road is a legendary studio located in northwest London, UK that is renowned for its musical history. Abbey Road is not only the most popular recording studio, but it is currently the largest in the world. It is best known for being home to The Beatles and has been used by many other famous musicians such as Oasis, Adele, Rolling Stones, and many others.
Muscle Shoals Sound Studio (MS Sound) is one of the most prized studios in the entire United States of America. This legendary studio was founded in 1969 by owner and producer, Jimmy Johnson. It helped define the sound of Southern soul and has since been the catalyst for hits from the likes of Lynyrd Skynyrd, Areatha Franklin, The Rolling Stones, The Allman Brothers, and more.
Sonic Ranch is the world’s largest residential recording studio, sitting on a huge 2300 acre private pecan ranch bordering the Rio Grande and Old Mexico. It is equipped with 5 Vincent Van Haaff designed studios which adjoin a traditional seventy-year-old Spanish Hacienda with 12 individual bedrooms. Sonic Ranch is truly a home away from home and has been graced by Bob Dylan, Eric Clapton and many others.
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Blackbird Studios is a state of the art recording studio located in Nashville, Tennessee founded in 2002 by sound engineer John McBride, and his wife country artist Martina McBride, The Blackbird complex now includes nine studios and houses, The Blackbird Academy, a post-secondary audio engineering school, and some of the world’s top sound engineers.
Onkio Haus is a music and recording studio with a history of 40 years in Japan. It is easily accessible, taking only five minutes to get there by taxi from Tokyo station. It’s equipped with the finest recording equipment that money can buy, the rooms are acoustically designed for the most accurate instrumental recording, and they have some of Japan's very best engineers on staff.
Electric Lady Studios is a recording studio in the Greenwich Village area of New York City. It was commissioned by famous rock musician Jimi Hendrix in 1968 and designed by architect John Storyk and audio engineer Eddie Kramer by 1970. It has since hosted artists from all genres of music, including rock, pop, hip-hop, jazz, blues, and folk. It is a historic and legendary recording studio that has been designated as an official "Named Recording Site" by the National Recording Preservation Board.
The Village Studios is a world famous recording studio housed in a 1920's Masonic Temple located in West Los Angeles, California. Notable clients include The Beach Boys, The Who, Rod Stewart, America, Elvis Costello, and The Band.
Real World Studios is a residential recording facility located on the edge of the cliffs in rural North Somerset, England. It was founded as a studio complex by Peter Gabriel after he had been touring as a solo artist and wanted to create a permanent home for his projects, which would also be available to other artists who wished to experiment with cutting-edge recording technology.
Metropolis is a state of the art recording studio used by some of the biggest names in music today. With creative facilities including 110 meters of pristine isolation track that houses a world-class collection of synths, basses, and drums, the studio also boasts cutting-edge recording and mastering technology that can be adapted to each and every project.
Sunset Sound is a recording studio located in Hollywood, California. It is famous for its recording of Frank Sinatra's first two singles, "That Old Black Magic" (1942) and "All or Nothing at All" (1943).
Question De Son is a music and recording studio located in Paris, France. It was built and founded in 2013 by the French producer and musician, Etienne Charry. Question De Son has hosted many artists including Kavinski, Para One, Chateau Marmont, and others.
Island Sound Studios is a beautiful prized facility in Hawaii Kai that has hosted stars like Kanye West, Beyonce and Rihanna. Formerly known as Avex Honolulu Studios, it is a full production and audio recording facility sitting on a marina five minutes away from the famed Hanauma Bay snorkeling site.
Chase Park Transduction is a recording studio based in Athens, Georgia. The studio opened in 2011 by members of the band Deerhunter and is a creative space focused on experimental music, particularly that of psychedelic persuasion.
Westlake Recording Studios is a recording studio located in West Hollywood, California. It was originally built as Westlake Audio by Bruce Botnick in the 1970s and was later acquired by the late Mark Linett. Westlake rooms aimed for an acoustic design that could give a fairly flat frequency response at the recording position, with the ability to control reverberation delay. The studios became very popular and “Westlake-style” rooms spread to a number of other studios and around the world by the late 1970s.
Allaire Studios is a world-class recording studio located in The Hudson Valley, at the foothills of the Catskill Mountains. It is owned and operated by musician and producer David Allaire and has hosted artists from a wide variety of musical genres including The Devil Makes Three, John Wesley Harding, Meg Baird, David Vandervelde, Marah, and Matt Mays.
Ocean Sound Recordings is a music studio located in Giske, Norway. It was founded in 2006 by singer-songwriter Jenny Hval and producer Erland Cooper. Ocean Sound Recordings specializes in producing, recording, and mixing projects from the field of experimental pop music.
Windmill Lane Recording Studios is an analog recording studio located in Dublin, Ireland since 1978. It has been described as an "underground" recording studio and until recently, they had no website or social media presence and only one picture on their Facebook page. They’ve been the heart of Ireland recording and have produced many hit records since opening their doors.
Hansa Tonstudio Berlin is a music and recording studio located in Berlin, Germany. It was built by Hansa Studios in the early 1970s and was one of the very first privately owned studios in post-war Germany. The studio has been the home of many famous artists including David Bowie, U2, Depeche Mode, Kraftwerk, and many others.
Crank Recording is a recording studio located in Northbridge, Western Australia. It was opened by Cameron Mackintosh in 2010 with the help of Russell Haddon and many leading Australian music industry professionals. Crank recording has hosted and tour managed many Australian musicians such as Heath Ledger, Emma Bunton, Jason Donovan, and Gregory Porter.
Air Studios is a recording studio located in London, UK. Air Studios was built by the EMI Group and opened in 1969, it was originally designed to provide orchestral backing for EMI artists. It is now one of the most famous and prized recording studios in all of Europe offering world class audio design and recording.
The Church’s three state-of-the-art recording studios include a huge light-filled live room with a 72 channel vintage EMI Neve desk; a dazzling futuristic digital recording room with SSL mixing capabilities, and a purpose-built ultra-modern writing room if needed to craft a track from scratch. Every bit of equipment, effects unit or instrument a musician could possibly desire.
The Record Plant was founded in 1973 by Gary Kellgren and Chris Stone, with the intent of being "a place that emulates the atmosphere of a real recording studio". Today it is considered one of the most influential recording studios of all time, being home to such artists as The Beatles, Phil Collins, David Bowie, Madonna, and Metallica.
Orbit Audio is a Seattle-based recording studio founded by indie rock musician Kurt Bloch. It is a non-traditional private studio that provides recording, mixing, and mastering services to musicians primarily in the Pacific Northwest region of the US.
Founded in 1995, Chalice Recording Studios is one of the largest and most successful recording studios on the West Coast. Located in historic Northeast Los Angeles, Chalice has been the choice recording studio for hundreds of artists throughout the years.
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