Gordon Bahary is no stranger to the world of music.
Bahary, owner of Electric Kingdom Studios, has been in the business from a young age, when he self-taught the piano. At 14, he started a radio station in his own Long Island home, which was then considered illegal.
When he was in 10th grade, he contacted the Stevie Wonder production team. He reached out so many times that Wonder finally called him back to see what exactly he wanted, to which Bahary replied that he wanted to produce for him.
Wonder listened to his music, gave him advice, then flew Bahary to Los Angeles where he watched Wonder create music for “Songs in the Key of Life”.
Bahary’s dream later came true when he was aided by some of the sounds from Wonder’s “Journey Through the Secret Life of Plants”.
“The only albums I had (when I was younger) were The Beatles and my sister had a copy of a Stevie Wonder album so I played it all day,” Bahary said. “I wanted a synth to follow me and I got good at it and looked for it.”
Bahary, a singer and songwriter, went on to produce multi-platinum songs produced for television, most notably Disney Channel’s “That’s So Raven”. He also owns Electric Kingdom Studios in Manhattan. Bahary, also a sound engineer, has just opened his fifth studio in Hartsdale.
Electric Kingdom studios are named after one of his songs.
Studio represents the “greatest hits”
“(The new studio) is the culmination of everything I ever wanted in terms of gear and the highlight of Rupert Neve,” Bahary said.
Bahary described Neve as the “audio pioneer”. Neve designed the mixing console at Hartsdale Electric Kingdom Studio before his passing earlier this year.
“This console is the greatest success of Mr. Neve’s designs from the 60s, 70s and 80s,” Bahary said.
“It put all of those tones into a big mixer and you can dial them in. And it has 10 decibels more headroom, providing more dynamic range than other recording consoles available today. So you can do it. put in a lot of dense music and that didn’t. I wanted a console that could handle dynamics, heavy bass and thick orchestration without distortion. ”
The new Electric Kingdom Studio also has a panel of 60 devices to allow artists to choose a “flavor” of songs.
“So if someone says they like the sound of a certain song, the console can get you that sound from this or that artist,” Bahary said. “You can insert it and change the color of the sound.”
The studio is located in a house adjacent to Hartsdale’s 100-acre Harts Brook Park Preserve, adding to a relaxed and homey vibe.
“People can pull over with a car and save almost 100 acres of reserve, it’s very quiet,” Bahary said. “The city is lively, parking is difficult and it is not easy to transport your equipment around the building. I think nature is more conducive to creativity for a warmer environment with a lot of amenities.”
Bahary said the Hartsdale area is three minutes away, so food can be delivered, and since he lives in the area, it is easier for him to offer his services as a studio engineer.
“Everyone who records out there has me as an engineer and I bring my experience to the table,” Bahary said. “(The studio) is suited to my mixing as an engineer, so we can enhance an already recorded recording by mixing it in that room.”
Bahary added that he also plans to do sheet music for television and film in the studio, where he can integrate a small orchestra.
“I hope to create a haven for artists, producers and engineers,” Bahary said. “They are all different. I want this to be a haven for creativity without the high expense of a studio in the city.”
For more information, visit electrickingdom.com.
Heather Clark covers business openings and closings in Westchester, Rockland and Putnam counties. Keep up to date with the latest comings and goings by joining our Facebook group at What’s going on Westchester, Rockland, Putnam. Contact Clark by email, [email protected]