Abbey Road Studios in London is most closely associated with the Beatles, but it was here that many other notable classic rock albums were recorded. The building that houses the studio was originally a Georgian townhouse constructed in 1831. 100 years after it was built, the Gramophone company acquired the building and converted it into studios. Later, after Gramophone Company merged with Columbia Gramophone Company to become EMI, the studios were renamed EMI Studios. The studio’s earliest recordings were classical music pieces.
1962 was year that the studios began its journey into Rock and Roll history. The Beatles and Sir George Martin began their history together at Abbey Road Studios when they auditioned for him in studio 3. It was in September of 1962 that the Beatles recorded their first single here. That single, “Love Me Do”, went on to hit #17 on the charts in UK and then #1 in the US in ‘64.
It was because the Beatles recorded almost all of their albums here that the studios at 3 Abbey Road were renamed Abbey Road Studios in 1970.
The Beatles were not the only notable artists to record here. Pink Floyd recorded The Dark Side of the Moon album at Abbey Road Studios in 1973. Ummagumma was recorded here in ‘69 and Wish You Were Here in ‘75.
The studios at Abbey Road have also been the site of some really awesome movie soundtrack recordings. In 1981 John Williams and the London Symphony Orchestra recorded the soundtrack for Raiders of the Lost Ark. In 1983 they came back to record the soundtrack for Return of the Jedi.
Abbey Road Studios is a working studio so you’ll need to pay for some recording time or be a studio musician to get inside. Google has a really cool site that virtually takes you into the studio. Giving you amazing access to the 3 studios and their history. After you’d done here at Rock and Roll places you can check it out by clicking here.
When in London though it is a must to stop by the studio and see the building where so many of the iconic albums of Classic Rock were recorded. If you’re a Beatles fan, you can get your picture taken on the famous Abbey Road crossing. Yes, it’s a bit touristy, but everyone is doing it so you’ll fit right in.
Interested in another classic rock studio? Check out our post on the iconic Electric Lady Studios in New York.
Photo by Ku ba
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