Welcome to the New Memphis Beat

Welcome to the New Memphis Beat, a blog dedicated to covering the recording business in Memphis, Tennessee.

New Memphis Beat grew out of our desire to tell the continuing story of music being made in Memphis studios.

Few cities can boast of as many historically significant, still-operational, and analog-capable studios as Memphis. And while it’s true that Memphis has one of the richest and deepest musical legacies of any city in the world, it also has one of the brightest futures. The reason? Its world-class studios and recording professionals.

Memphis recently had its first #1 single in 40 years, Mark Ronson and Bruno Mars’ “Uptown Funk”, which was recorded at Royal Studio and won a Grammy for Record of the Year in 2016. And that wasn’t Memphis’ only Grammy in 2016: Memphis-based engineer Matt Ross-Spang also won for his work on Jason Isbell’s Something More Than Free.

But Memphis’ studio scene doesn’t stop with Sun, Royal, Ardent, and Phillips. Scott Bomar’s Electraphonic put out Grammy-nominated work, and Justin Timberlake’s guitarist Elliot Ives has taken the wheel over at Young Avenue Sound.  There’s Music + Arts, Easley/New School, American, High/LowJim Dickinson’s Zebra Ranch – the list goes on. Jeff Powell is mastering vinyl lacquers at Phillips, and we even have a vinyl manufacturing plant again, Memphis Record Pressing.

What’s more, Memphis is only three hours away from Nashville, the center of the recording industry. Memphis studios can be a valuable resource for Nashville recording artists and professionals as well, just a short drive down I-40. We believe that Memphis is not merely a tourist destination – it’s a recording destination.

In other words, the Memphis recording business is back, and New Memphis Beat is here to tell you about it. We’re going to provide not only news, but also sights and sounds. This blog will be a resource to introduce the world to some of our treasured veteran studio musicians. We want to help educate a new generation of young recording artists on the resurgent art of analog recording — and to learn more about it ourselves in the process. We’ll talk about art, we’ll talk about commerce, and we’ll talk about gear. We’ll learn about our history while we look to our future. Contributions will come from sources throughout the Memphis recording scene, and that we’ll get to hear directly from our city’s many gifted musical pros.

Please bookmark us and follow us on social media. We’ll keep you up to date, and we’ll look forward to your feedback and suggestions at newmemphisbeat@gmail.com.

Keep it tuned here.


John Paul Keith
Founder and Editor
May 12, 2016

John Paul Keith

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