Importance Of Music Education In School

Music has been an essential part of almost every culture. In fact when we talk of any culture, music is one of the things that distinguishes each community and society from each other. So, undoubtedly, music is what makes every culture even richer. And what would be a better way to teach your children about different cultures? It is not only about learning cultures, it is about developing an attitude, cognition, and maintaining the emotional and psychological balance through music. There are many studies that have proven how beneficial music could be in the overall development of kids. Many parents and schools believe that learning music is fruitless, but some studies have shown the direct connection between learning music and better academic performance. According to experts, students who were exposed to music lessons in childhood are more likely to score higher in math, languages, and science. It is because music contains all of the aforementioned factors. To know how music impacts the emotional and psychological development of your child, read further.

Personal and Emotional Development through music:

You might have spent more than half of your energy teaching discipline, cooperation, values in life, and other social skills to your kids in various ways. But a simple music lesson can teach them all of these valuable lessons. Children are most likely to take time for music classes, especially, when they are learning with other peers. It is highly likely that they would do this for other subjects. Music helps them become self disciplined, organized, coordinated, and cooperative. When they are learning in a group they also learn about team work, reliability, taking responsibility, and being accountable, etc. Apart from this, children get an opportunity to learn about the history of music, artists, different instruments, different types of music and the elements of music. They also discover how to make new instruments, how to repair instruments, and much more. This certainly adds to their knowledge and takes them closer to the lives of artistic people who can provide them with valuable insights on life.

Music in itself is a form of self-expression and creativity which imparts complex thinking abilities in children, which in turn, improves their cognitive abilities. With music it is easier to think about abstract things as it improves the imagination when one tries to invent or create his own tune or learning the old ones. So music is also a great way to express oneself which can help in reducing the emotional and psychological stress. In fact there are so many psychologists who use ‘music therapy’ to treat patients with mental disorders. Hence, music is plausibly the only tool that can provide your brain and mind with exercise as well relaxation. Apart from this, music can serve as one of the ways to boost a child’s self-esteem, especially someone who is poor in academic subjects. Imagine playing violin or singing a solo song at an annual function of the school. This can do wonders for your kid’s self-esteem. Therefore, music is certainly healing and is very important for the personal, emotional, mental, and psychological growth of children.

Academic Development through Music:

A boost in academic improvement can certainly be the incentive for many parents and schools to allow or start music classes for children. Many scientists and child development psychologists have come to the conclusion that music does improve a child’s academic performance and they certainly gain more expertise in core subjects such as science, language, math and history. Learning music involves rhythm which is achieved by time sense and counting. For example, children need to find out how long or short each musical note is, or when to stroke which cord, or what the dot on the note signifies, etc. So one has to have a good sense of timing and ability to multiply and divide time in order to achieve the same. And there are many studies to support this fact that music improves math. In fact there are many musicians who are exceptionally good at math.

You must be aware that musical notes are generally some symbols that one must learn in order to read them. Learning such musical notes also helps in improving the linguistic language to interpret its real meaning and delve deeper into the subject. While learning music they also go through different poems and songs written by previous artists, lyricists, singers, and poets. This helps children learn more about literature and different instruments, notes, and styles. They try to discover what sounds better together or how sound waves work, what mechanical corrections need to be done to get the exact sounds, and connection between distance and sound waves, etc. It indeed helps them find out more about science and through practical experiences it is easy to learn scientific theories.

Music enhances one’s logical intelligence, mathematical intelligence, linguistic intelligence, spatial intelligence, along with intrapersonal and interpersonal communication. Hopefully by now you have realized the importance of music education in schools. So when are you having a meeting with your kid’s teachers about starting a music class?

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Hip Hop Samples To Make Awesome Beats

Music is just a wonderful feeling that has the potential to blow our minds and we sometimes wonder what it takes to create this magic. Well surely it is not easy to get all your instruments and tools right and synchronize them perfectly as you wish. The fact is that you have to be a genius or a legend to create an absolutely fresh piece of music without any base. Every time we hear something, the sound gets stored in our mind and when we look to create music then we figure out ways to recreate those sounds through sound instruments. Take help of the hip hop samples to get some idea of how to proceed and hip hop drum samples will guide you with the sounds.

Hip hop sound kits are the marvelous gift for the modern world of music where you can have a simple electronic interface to produce all the sounds without needing to have all those instruments. Just imagine that with a sound kit, you can produce all the desired sounds with just a touch and you can manage all those instruments virtually at one place on your screen. This is the power that a sound kit brings. It is like having all the instruments and moreover able to play them from one place.

Sound kits provide a simplest and easiest way to create your music. However, you would need to enhance your kit by including hip hop loops and sounds. You must always look for sound kits that can provide a variety of sounds with a crisp sharp sound quality. You need to have a sound kit that can produce hundreds of sounds without compromising the quality. It is very important to choose an authentic retailer for buying it. Always look for those retailers that use customized sounds.

You can enjoy a lot of flexibility with hip hop sound kits like you can always modify or edit your performance later without needing to start all over again. This is an excellent option to monitor and enhance your performance with minimum effort and time. Also, you enjoy the availability of multiple instruments virtually at one place. It is a compact and versatile option. Hip hop drum loops and drum samples are available easily from many online stores. Creating music is now easy and a lot of fun if you have a hop hip kit with lots of hip hop samples.

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Detroit and Soul Music History

They say the birth of soul came in the 1950s, when the parents of gospel and jazz came together to form a more contemporary and dance-friendly style of music.

The Motor City is no doubt the backbone of modern soul and R&B. It became a powerhouse and industry standard for soul music throughout the country, competing with Atlantic Records and Stax for chart-topping hits throughout the 60s.

BLACK EMPOWERMENT

The one thing that stands out about Detroit’s golden era of soul music, which isn’t covered very often in many music documentaries or biographies, is the reverberation and inspiration drawn during the civil rights era occurring alongside its timeline.

Soul music isn’t just a genre, its black poetry set to the sounds that emanate from the soul.

If that sounds like a profound statement to be made, well, it’s the only way to describe what anyone feels when they identify deeply with the lyrics, the passion, and the power that soul music provides to black culture.

LOSING TOUCH IN DETROIT

As with practically every music genre in history, once soul music began to dominate the charts and the money showed record labels, the music scene began to fill with copycats and water-down imitations, inspired by the pop movement craze overseas in the UK.

They began using elements of Motown’s greatness to appeal to wider audiences, i.e. white suburbia, even though soul music was very popular with nearly every demographic.

As the inner cities began to transform, gentrification and appropriation of black culture began to push Detroit communities to the breaking point, spurring the infamous Detroit riots in 1967. The destruction spelt the end of the once dominant and influential city of Detroit, as well as the golden era of soul for Motown Records. During their final years, Motown churned out, arguable, their most soulful and raw records of their time, with lyrics laced in civil rights violence, suffocating poverty, calls for peace and unity; even Marvin’s soothing voice could not turn the tides.

THE TRANSFORMATION OF DETROIT SOUL

After the destruction and fall of a city that lead the country in both music and manufacturing, there came a new era of soul music, even with Motown now relegated to Hollywood pop hits. In Detroit, new eras of electronic music were giving way. Dance and techno exploded on the scene, the younger generations’ music didn’t sound the same, but it shared that same spark of music pioneering that Detroit is infamous for.

NEW TECHNOLOGY, SAME SOUL

Along with the new era of electronics brought more tools to produce, birthing the next major black culture of hip-hop. Hip hop is a culture that is derived from soul, the poetry is sped up, but the elements of expression and raw emotion are all there. It didn’t happen until the late 90s, but Detroit officially gave birth to a new genre of soul music, dubbed “Neo-soul”, which was created from the sounds of the late hip-hop producer James “Dilla” Dewitt Yancey.

His heavy sampling of classic soul records and basement sounds of the hard-hitting 808 drums is his signature, which left big impressions on soulful R&B singers, like Lauren Hill, Erykah Badu, Jill Scott, and Amel Larrieux. Who partially owe their success to his creative genius and love for Detroit soul.

Detroit is a city that is a testament to how powerful music is, as long as it comes from the soul, no matter how dire situations may be. Inside, we all have a drum in our chest that connects us all to the sound of music.

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The World’s Top 10 Best Jazz Guitarists of All Time

The following is a brief list that includes some of the world’s best jazz guitarists of all time. Whether you’re an aspiring jazz musician or just someone who appreciates the music, this list is for you.

Charlie Christian

Charles “Charlie” Christian was an American jazz guitarist who lived from 1916-1942. He is credited with bringing the jazz guitar out of the rhythm section and into the world of solo instrumentals. He was called the best improvisational talent of the swing era and one of the founding fathers of bebop, while single-handedly influencing nearly every other artist on our list. He was so diverse that he eventually was inducted into the Rock and Roll of Fame for his early influence.

Wes Montgomery

As the jazz music world continued to gain popularity, more artists emerged. Among them was Wes Montgomery, who was greatly influenced by Charlie Christian. In fact, he learned Christian’s solo and often played them note for note. Montgomery would eventually develop powerful techniques and lines for his own solos which would make him one of the most important and best jazz guitarists of all time. He later would be imitated for generations of jazz musicians.

Jim Hall

Improvisation was Jim Hall’s preference for developing new music. Hall discovered there was more to jazz than bebop, and eventually drew the attention of some of the best musicians in the 60’s including the Sonny Rollins’ band and Bill Evans, among others. His style and technique is one of the best seen in jazz music.

Freddie Green

We couldn’t go this entire list without mentioning William “Freddie” Green. While his journey with music started with the banjo, Green went on to play in clubs throughout New York as a teenager and quickly discovered his love for jazz guitar. He is known for his complicated rhythm guitar technique that blended perfectly with Big Band music.

Joe Pass

Joe Pass also emerged in the 60’s and went down as one of the best solo jazz guitarists of all time. With his extensive knowledge of lines, he created a reputation that continues to inspire artists to this day.

B.B. King

B.B. King was an American singer and jazz guitarist, and also one of the most famous artists to ever grace the American continent. There isn’t much we can say about B.B. that hasn’t already been said, but what we can point out is that he is considered one of the most influential jazz and blues musicians of all time. And will be for the foreseeable future.

Django Reinhardt

Belgian-born French jazz guitarist Django Reinhardt, is thought to be one of the best jazz guitarists of all time. Reinhardt was the father of what is known today as “hot jazz” and goes down as one of the best jazz guitarists of all time.

George Benson

Benson was born a jazz guitarist artist. He started off playing soul jazz and eventually broke onto the pop scene. He used a similar technique to that of Reinhardt, but was himself an incredible artist.

Larry Carlton

Larry Carlton, like George Benson, started playing guitar at a young age. Later in life he would play with the likes of Billy Joel, Michael Jackson, Quincy Jones and many more. His work within the jazz world is recognized the world over, and his songs continue to provide music for millions.

John Scofield

John Scofield was an American jazz-rock guitarist and composer. His work enabled him to work with everyone from Pat Metheny to Miles Davis. His talents spanned genres including funk, jazz-fusion and rock.
There you have it. Our picks for the best jazz guitarists in history.

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How Playing An Instrument Can Improve Your Brain

We all love music, there isn’t a person in this world who doesn’t like some kind of music or the other. Well, who would have thought playing music or learning to play an instrument could improve the functioning of our brains? I’m not saying it- it’s all well documented in science.

Science shows it helps in “neurophysiological distinction” which aids in literacy, thereby translating into better academic capabilities. Studies in the Northwestern University show that music can greatly improve the functioning of your brain. Studies show that (simply/just) listening to music is not enough, but that you have to practice playing music in order to improve your cognitive function. For example, just watching sports doesn’t make you fit, does it?

The same study shows that students who play music have better attendance and cognitive function, although active participation in making music is required to rewire the brain.

We all know one thing for sure- music has the power to change our mood, it definitely possesses the ability to motivate us and often improves concentration. Music makes us happier, leading to more dopamine release which means more contentment in life.

Want a more symmetrical brain? You better pick up an instrument. Brain scores show that musicians have a more symmetrical brain and that the areas responsible for motor control, auditory processing and spatial coordination are denser, which makes you a well-balanced person both physically and emotionally.

Want a faster brain? I know you do. Again, picking up an instrument is the answer. The Corpus callosum as the scientists call it, is a bridge between the left and right hemispheres of the brain and guess what, people who play music have a thicker and more efficient Corpus callosum, helping the two spheres of your brain to communicate better and faster.

Perhaps the single most reason for stress is the stress hormone cortisol, which leads to all kinds of unwanted stress related problems in our lives. But the good news is, listening to music decreases this stress hormone; even listening to sad music has benefits- it has been proved to provide you with the necessary physiological relief during hard times.

It increases the spatial intelligence of your brain which helps in understanding how things work. This is an essential skill for complex careers like architecture, engineering, math and computer science.

If you don’t want a receding memory down the lane when you age, music has shown to protect people from memory loss and cognitive damage. You don’t have to play music forever, even people who have played music for just 4 years seem to show the same results in their cognitive functions even after 40 years.

So go ahead and pick up that instrument you always wanted to, let the music flow through you for all the joys it has to offer you in life, for like Einstein said, “I know that the most joy in my life has come to me from my violin”. And if you are looking for that inspiration you always needed, look no further- here is a list of famous people who played instruments. Look up to them, learn, laugh and love.

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Where to Find Free Music for Your Videos

Copyright holders, along with YouTube (to use a well-known example), have, within the last few years, been cracking down on people using copyrighted music without permission. Tributes & covers of songs, of course, have been somewhat “riding the fence” of legality, where the artists gives their due credit to the composer/lyricist in question and provides a disclaimer in their video description that says “this is not my work, I do not own the rights to this music,” and they generally get left alone, more or less.

Obviously, though, not all videos with music in them are covers or tributes. Other videos are sometimes sales pitches, or vlogs featuring meditation music. Whatever the reason for including music at all, it’s something of an embarrassment for a video creator if they have to remove or replace the music in their video because the music was copyrighted, and the creator had their video monetized. And since not every content creator out there earns lots of money from their videos, they likely can’t afford to pay the royalty fees required of them, so they’re forced to remove the music.

Finding Free Music

But not everyone is a musician and/or lyricist with the ability to compose their own works. Nor does everyone have a musician pal at their disposal, whether that musician gets paid for ditties and jingles or not. So it’s often up to the one creating the video to find either free music, or at the very least, royalty-free tracks. But where to find such music? And is the free music you’d find of high quality?

After all, it used to be that most stock music libraries didn’t have music that was very good quality, and some music libraries are still like this if the people uploading tracks have used cheap equipment and synthesizers where the built-in digital sound banks aren’t very accurately sampled & reproduced (this tends to happen with lower-end electronic keyboards).

However, thanks to the advent of MP3s and more professional-grade composition & editing software, among other similar advances, most stock music libraries these days often have truly stunning tracks available in a wide variety of genres, so you’re not stuck with just a few samples here and there of one style, and a lot of samples in another style, and nothing to speak of in any other genre.

What’s the Difference?

Now, you might be wondering what the difference is between “royalty-free” and completely free, when it comes to stock music libraries.

“Royalty-free” means that you pay a one-time fee for a track and you don’t have to continually pay royalties to the composer for the entire time you use their works, and there is usually some sort of usage license that detail how you can use the music once you pay the fee. Completely free music is simply that: It that has no upfront usage fee and is normally licensed under the “Creative Commons” license.

When you go looking for free music, you’ll want to take a look at the types of music licenses available, as each licensing company has different stipulations as to how the music they have on offer can be used.

It’s worth your time and energy to go looking for free music. It saves the hassle and embarrassment of having to remove an otherwise copyrighted track and replace it, plus you never know what amazing, original music can be found at reasonable prices.

Look for a site that has a wide range of music genres. It’s easy to find the right music when you have categories like alternative rock, New Age/Ethereal, Country and so forth. Look for a music site is entirely free or that charges a minimal fee for commercial applications.

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A Beginner’s Guide to Jazz Guitar Transcriptions

To understand and learn your instrument like a pro, you have to understand and actively use jazz guitar transcriptions. If you want to learn jazz guitar phrasing, tunes, and concepts, then transcriptions are the only way to go.

So what exactly are jazz guitar transcriptions, what do you need to know about them, and how can you use them to become a better guitar player?

What are Jazz Guitar Transcriptions?

As we mentioned, music is its own language. Musicians write down the physical representation of their melodies so that they may play them again and edit them as they like. Professionals often use transcriptions to share their music with the world. If it weren’t for musical transcriptions, we wouldn’t know what Beethoven or Mozart’s music sounded like.

Jazz guitar transcriptions are often a recreation of the best jazz musician’s music. You’ll find a variety of them available online for download so you can easily play them at will-as long as you understand how to read music. You may choose to play these songs note for note or alter them to fit your own style. That’s the beautiful thing about transcriptions.

What Should You Know About Them?

The first step towards transcribing is to figure out what you want to play. Typically jazz guitar transcriptions are for solos only, so if you have a band you’re playing with they won’t really provide the full scope of the song.

While you probably have countless favorite jazz songs, you’ll likely find they are very difficult to transcribe. Be careful about your selection, particularly if you are new to the world of transcribing. Choose a solo that is simple but offers you much in the way of tuning your inexperienced jazz music ear. Look for something that helps you grow but doesn’t burn you out.

Sometimes it’s best to find something you’re already familiar with. Start there and as you grow as a musician venture into the more complex solos. You’ll have plenty of time for that later.

Using Them to Improve

It’s easy to justify your own laziness by saying how some of your favorite musicians didn’t use transcriptions, but the reality is you’re only hurting yourself by doing that. You have the ability to enhance your skills by leaps and bounds by using jazz guitar transcriptions.

Whether you’re doing the transcribing yourself or simply downloading them to familiarize yourself with how they work, jazz guitar transcriptions can be your ticket to better guitar playing. Find one or two you’d like to learn and apply yourself. You never know how far they can take you until you explore their use in your practice.

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A Life Singer at Your Event Can Make It Spectacular

Music is the heart and soul of just about any gathering. Why not make yours spectacular with a singer for hire? You can find someone with a lovely voice, plenty of material they offer, and a great price. This makes it ideal for dancing to be part of the event. You can hire someone who sings their own songs or covers from other bands.

Experience and Talent

Spend some time online finding out about the potential candidates. They should have both experience and talent. Watch videos and read their biography. Don’t dive in to getting a singer for hire or you may regret it. You want someone who is friendly and eager to place. They may allow you to customise the playlist.

This is done by giving you a list of the songs they can sing. Then you can go through it and decide what you would like them to play for the period of time they are going to be at your event. Ask them to sing for you as an audition too so you can hear how they sound now. Some of the recordings may be several years old.

Estimated Costs

Typically, a singer for hire is going to charge you by the hour for the event. They may offer packages for partial or full days. They may ask you to include feeding them or other perks in the event if they will be there for a long time. Some of them will do autograph and photo sessions. Others plan only to come in and sing for you.

Know what those estimated costs are going to include before you reach out to offer them the job. If it is more than your budget for the event in the area of a signer for hire, let them know. Tell them you would love to hire them but you can only pay a certain amount. They may accept it and you can move forward with the plans.

There may be some variables in the cost that they can’t control. However, they should explain to them in the contract what those are and why they can’t be controlled. If you don’t agree with this, you need to speak up and not sign. You don’t want the final cost to be such a difference from the estimate that you can’t afford all of it.

Put it in Writing

Only work with a singer for hire who can prove a solid background and reputation of being on time. You don’t want your event to be ruined because they were late or they didn’t show up at all. Put all of the details in writing so they are bound legally to show up and execute them. Without such information, you may be putting it all on the line.

The internet is a great place to look for referrals. These are people who can tell you how terrible or how great the event was. It can open your eyes if you are moving in the wrong direction with someone. It can also help you to feel confident about whom you will hire due to their strong work ethic.

The contract should state what the overall cost will be for the singer for hire. If there is a portion of it due at the time to book, make sure that is noted. This is a deposit and you often won’t get it back should you cancel your event. If you have any other stipulations you would like them to uphold, make sure they are in the contract and all parties sign it. This will give you peace of mind with any singer for hire.

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Jazz and Blues – An Overview

Let’s take a closer look at what blues and jazz are and how they differ in musical style.

What is Jazz?

Jazz and blues are two distinct musical genres. They are American musical traditions that have roots that go back hundreds of years. Jazz for instance, was developed in New Orleans and was originally known as “jass” but later evolved into jazz by dropping the “ss” and replacing it with “zz” which basically translates into “cool”. It wasn’t until the 19th century that jazz began to take on brass instruments, prior to which instruments like the saxophone, cornet, and trombone were primarily used. As those instruments were infused into the genre, it evolved to create a much larger base.

What is Blues?

Blues, unlike jazz, originated in the southern part of Mississippi, and was first recorded in the 1920s. During that time, it was typically played solo, which is different from the ensemble like nature of jazz we see today. The first ever blues solo player simply used a slide guitar as his primary musical instrument. Today, it enlists the help of many artists and includes blues bands to create its distinct sound.

How They’re Similar

Jazz Blues is a genre all its own, but typically refers to a blues artist who uses more complex harmonies or rhythms and breaks away from traditional blues patterns, or a jazz artist who keeps his harmonies simple. The result is a mix match combination of musical patterns and jazz blues songs that music lovers can treasure. Some people even refer to jazz blues songs as “R&B” although that wouldn’t be completely accurate.

The truth is, many people equate jazz and blues to the same genre simply because they originated in the American South. Discerning the two distinct genres can be confusing, simply because many artists do crossovers, going from jazz to blues and the reverse. While that does make them ‘siblings’ they certainly aren’t identical. The jazz blues genre may refer to is simply a combination of both styles or a little of one taken from another to create a mashup.

Conclusion

Whether you prefer jazz music, blues, or like jazz blues songs, there are countless reasons to listen to this distinctly American genre of music. Attractive harmonies, unique rhythms and generations old music styles are the foundations of jazz and blues. One thing is for sure, we can all agree that jazz and blues are fun, easy genres to listen to.

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On the Record

Have you ever wondered where the records you loved were recorded? Today great sound can be recorded on to the hard- disk of a computer or hand- held device, but most professionals still use a purpose- built recording studio with expensive high- tech recording equipment. Before tape recording technology, recordings went straight to disc. When magnetic tape recording was introduced, recordings went to tape before being transferred to a master disc for copying. The trouble with tape was hiss, which could be heard on quite passages. Engineers developed systems to cut this down. Later, Ray Dolby brought out his system of noise reduction, that dramatically improved recordings and was and still is used worldwide.

Hiss would be more noticeable if a copy of the original tape was used, making it second generation. In professional recording studios the equipment employed would usually run the tape at fifteen inches per second (ips) to achieve a good frequency response. Some machines recorded at seven and a half ips and thirty ips.

Originally, recordings were mono (single track). In the 1950s stereo came on board, but was mainly used for classical music. At that time singles were only released in mono, and most were recorded in mono. Later, two- track, four- track, eight- track, sixteen and twenty-four track recording came along. Sometimes two twenty-four track machines were linked, giving the engineer a massive forty-eight tracks to play with. This allowed instruments to have their own track. The singer was usually put in a booth on his/her own with a pair of headphones to listen to the accompaniment live in the studio, or playback that had been recorded earlier. The artiste then sang to the music. One of the advantages of the singer recording on a track that didn’t contain the backing, was that later, other tracks could be added and mixed for stereo.

A lot of the British output was recorded in London studios, with some recorded in the states and other places. Electrical Musical Industries (EMI) in Abbey Road, St John’s Wood, London was where a lot of British hits were made. There are three large studio areas; number one being the largest. The Beatles, Cliff Richard, Cilla Black and many many others recorded there. EMI ran several labels, including Columbia, Parlophone and HMV. Labels had their own colour until the mid sixties, when they became all black. Columbia was green, Parlophone red and HMV blue. EMI had a pressing plant in Hayes, Middlesex. HMVs trademark, Nipper the dog, listening to a gramophone was on the roof.

Decca was another label that had its fair share of hits. Their recording facility was in Broadhurst Gardens, Hampstead. Another hit making establishment was the PYE recording studios, which was at Cumberland Place, Marble Arch in London. This was originally going to be ATV television studios but became a place where hits were made by many, including sixties chart toppers the Searchers.

Philips had a studio in the area and recording supremo Joe Meek, who had a hit with his composition Telstar had a studio in his flat in Holloway Road. Meek was ahead of his time, creating sounds in a way that hadn’t been tried until then. There was and still are many studios in London and across the UK catering for the talent of today. The Decca studios at Broadhurst Gardens and PYE are no more, but the wonderful sounds created in them live on.

Today, we have high- tech digital recording, but the analogue studios of yesteryear, on both sides of the Atlantic and the rest of the world, produced some unforgettable sounds that will forever have a place in the history of music and memory.

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