Recording studio

From Abbey Road to a recording studio in the bush

Stephen Lindsay, owner and producer of the former Binda Road recording studio. Photo: Hannah Sparks.

At the end of a small dirt road just outside of Crookwell in the NSW region is the Old Binda Road Recording Studio.

Owner, producer and composer Stephen Lindsay, of Oceanic Records, has worked at famed Abbey Road Studios in London, and with contestants from The voice.

Now he records music with local artists such as Mariah Keramianaki – aka Mariah K – who are nervous about approaching the big recording studios or traveling around town.

“I don’t think I would have ever had the confidence to approach a studio elsewhere,” says Mariah. “I was worried about how I was going to get to a big studio in Canberra or Sydney. “

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Surrounded by peaceful farmland and sometimes interrupted by visits from Stephen’s two adorable dogs, the Old Binda Road Recording Studio is the perfect place for artists to escape the city, eliminate distractions and embrace a state of life. creative spirit.

“Making music is a creative process, so it’s important to get into a space where you can stay for a week or a weekend, walk around and talk to the sheep,” says Stephen. “It’s a good place to relax.

“I also offer rates which are probably half the price of a studio apartment in Sydney because I don’t have a big mortgage to cover.”

The studio was designed by John Sayers Productions, who specialize in designing recording studios, and built from materials discarded by ABC and acclaimed music producer Doug Mulray.

Mariah Keramianaki in recording studio

Mariah Keramianaki – aka Mariah K – recorded her first album, Journey, at the Old Binda Road Recording Studio in Crookwell. Photo: Hannah Sparks.

“That window was coming out of ABC’s studio in Burwood, Victoria, just like those big magnetically sealed doors,” says Stephen, looking around his studio. “All of the wall insulation came from the basement recording studios at Circular Quay [in Sydney]. “

The two large windows across from Stephen’s office – which has more buttons than the average person would know what to do with – overlook two adjoining rooms where performers stand behind microphones.

“I’m aware that people can set up home studios in their rooms with a laptop and a few speakers, but none of them will spend $ 20,000 to $ 30,000 to set it up, so they there has been a lot of money spent here to draw people out of Bowral, Canberra and Sydney, ”he says.

Stephen estimates that one of the two windows he got for $ 160 would have originally cost the ABC $ 10,000.

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The studio also has two bedrooms, a kitchen and a living room, and has a swimming pool and a fireplace for artists staying for a week or a weekend.

From the outside, the studio looks like a garage, but inside it is full of comfy cushions, memorabilia and knick-knacks.

It is this sense of home away from home that Stephen achieved that has made artists like Mariah feel comfortable recording their music there.

“It’s intimidating enough to walk into a recording studio and be placed in front of a microphone, so it’s important to do whatever you can to make people feel at home and relaxed,” says Stephen. .

Mariah K and Stephen Lindsay holding framed album art in studio

Mariah K worked with Stephen Lindsay for two years on her debut album, Journey. Photo: Hannah Sparks.

And it’s possible that the Old Binda Road Recording Studio is the only one of its kind in southern New South Wales since Jimmy Barnes closed his White House studio in Bowral.

“I have this regional area all to myself,” Stephen says.

He doesn’t just record music either. Audiobooks, poetry, podcasts, and meditations have also been recorded in the Old Binda Road Recording Studio.

It is for Stephen’s experience that people come here.

He has been writing songs and performing in bands since school and started recording music when he bought his first home in Sydney.

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Stephen trained at one of the city’s first audio engineering schools and now uses analog and digital recording equipment.

“What I love most is that someone like Mariah walks in with the bones of something and helps bring it to life,” he says.

“My role as a producer is to guide the artists and add instruments to the music.”

Stephen has a network of musicians, from a horn player in Washington, USA, to a drummer in Finland. Together, he and Mariah even found one of the best bouzouki players in the world for her song, Elada, which concerns the country of origin of his family, Greece.

Mariah K’s debut album, Journey, officially launches on April 17 and is available for purchase from the family business, Paul’s Cafe, in Crookwell.

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