Broke Musicians, Rejoice! Central Library Has a Free, Legit Recording Studio

Categories: Live and Local

Allison Babka
This isn't My First Mixer from Fisher Price. This is the real deal.

Today's libraries are far cries from the dead-silent tombs of the past. With a focus on community-creation projects and local-music support, the Central Library branch of the St. Louis Public Library system is encouraging patrons to -- believe it or not -- rock the heck out.

In May, Central Library revealed the Recording Room, a legitimate studio space where card holders can use professional gear to lay down tracks or record oral projects like podcasts, histories and poems at no cost. The new addition already has been a hit, with nearly all time slots reserved.

"We're certainly glad that this success has happened, and we're looking to see if there's anything we can do to provide even more service," says Rob Tygett, manager of digital library services.

Located on the lower level of the downtown library, the studio features a Macbook with secondary monitor, sixteen-channel recording mixer, Yeti microphones, speakers, headphones, vocals corner and much more in a room where sound has been dampened by carpet and wall baffling. Moreover, musicians can enjoy a permanent USB full-size keyboard and hookups for their own guitars, bass, electronic drum kits, DJ equipment and other instruments.

"It certainly gets loud in here," says Tygett, who has a background in media communications and volunteered at KDHX 88.1 FM for about ten years. "I've managed to take the amp to a point where you can get it loud, but you can't explode things." Most library patrons won't even realize that people are recording just a few feet away, though; the studio is built with drywall that insulates the sound from those nearby.

The Recording Room has even more tools for music creation and mixing. The Macbook is loaded with software such as GarageBand, Audacity and Logic Pro, and the library plans to add Pro Tools within the next few weeks. In addition, the studio provides print reference materials, mixer cheat sheets and online tutorials through lynda.com, making everything accessible and easy to understand for recording pros as well as novices.

"You're able to come in, record your band, DJ mix or solo project straight to the computer and then move there to do your editing, burn it to CD, save it to a flash drive or put it online," Tygett says.

The Recording Room is part of a larger space called the Creative Experience, which is dedicated to digital media creation and features collaborative pods of Macs and walls of monitors with Apple Creativity apps (iMovie, iPhoto, GarageBand, etc.), Adobe Creativity Suite (Photoshop, Dreamweaver, etc.), LEGO Digital Designer, webcams, microphones and more. With all of the resources available, it's feasible that a musician might put down tracks in the Recording Room and then move into the Creative Experience to create album art or edit a music video.

"It's definitely a great free resource for people," says Andrea Johnson, the library's Creative Experience specialist. "We had some teens in here the other day from Farmington, and one of them said, 'I just want to live here, this is so amazing.' So it's pretty exciting."

Learn how you might perform at the library on page two.

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58 comments
livviej
livviej

can not wait to record in here.

Brian Boyd
Brian Boyd

Armed shootouts at the library in 3..2..1..

Pratie Head
Pratie Head

They also have books that you can check out and read too for FREE!

Meg Bruhn
Meg Bruhn

Check it out Marky Bertolis.

Nat Sirius
Nat Sirius

Well, this IS free, for folks who hold a library card.

Paula Williams
Paula Williams

Now the news is out, it will get stolen or vandalized.

Wil Wander
Wil Wander

It is a great idea.........if only someone were to take that a step further??????? ;-)

Jason M Parker
Jason M Parker

Wannabe Punk bands, Rappers, and EDM producers rejoice

Aaron Boothe
Aaron Boothe

St. Louis just gets cooler and cooler. I miss STL

Justin Spencer
Justin Spencer

Oh great, now the media center is going to be even more full of riff raff.

Stephen Mennemeyer
Stephen Mennemeyer

Hey everyone were extending an invite to come check us out for all your blues memorabilia and just having a great time. We're having an event on the 12th for all types of fun and prizes. If your a blues fan you don't want to miss this! www.facebook.com/groups/StlouisHockeyBuySellTrade/

Cody Nix
Cody Nix

Absolutely love the idea, but how long until everything is broken?

Cory Hart
Cory Hart

I will definitely be taking advantage of this.

Matt Cox
Matt Cox

Brace yourself..... the shitty comments are coming!

Matt Cox
Matt Cox

What? Really? Music is a hobby right and its something positive for kids to do. Instead of going out and getting into trouble. They have some where to go a record music. You negative ass!

Steve Mincer
Steve Mincer

ya... it's lack of pro tools causing all the problems.

Steve Mincer
Steve Mincer

brace yourselves... the shitty music is coming!

Matt Cox
Matt Cox

That's whats up, keep the kids off the streets.

Bushey Tina
Bushey Tina

What an excellent idea for a library.

jaco1175
jaco1175 topcommenter

Sweet! I was looking for a place to edit down my local amateur porno for production! Speaking of which Sally, you need a job?

jaco1175
jaco1175 topcommenter

God shut the fuck up you stupid bitch. Can't you over privileged stuck up cunts ever keep your stupid comments and veiled racism to yourself? Fucking seriously, doesn't it ever get boring? Go fuck yourself twat, you do nothing to help shit, your just a loudmouthed skanky fuck leaving a trail of slime behind you. Fuck. You.

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