Northern Vermont University has tapped the expertise of Northeast Kingdom businesses to renovate the recording studio for the music business and industry (MBI) program on its Lyndon campus.
The studio is a vital part of NVU’s innovative MBI program, which focuses on hands-on skill-building experience to help students excel in their careers. “It’s a well-loved facility, and since the studio has been open 24 hours a day, seven days a week for 10 years, it was time for an overhaul,” MBI assistant professor Brian Warwick says.
Warwick contacted recording studio contractors in Boston and New York before deciding to work with NEK businesses instead, including John Heartson’s Dreamery Productions in Barnet, which Warwick had visited during a student’s internship there. “I was impressed with the sound of John’s studio. It had a really tight and punchy sound, which I thought would be perfect for our studio,” Warwick says.
For NVU’s studio, Heartson designed acoustic treatment including bass traps, sound absorbers and polycylindrical diffusers mounted with French cleat wall trim. Mike Lamp of West Barnet Woodworks made the diffusers and wood trim with local oak, and Wheeler Building Materials in Lyndonville supplied materials.
NVU alumnus Tyler Valley of Valley Mountain Woodworking in Westmore built a custom ergonomic desk for the studio’s Toft ATB24 recording console and outboard equipment. Tim Hodges provided the maple desk trim from Danville. Valley also installed the wall treatment with Ted Jacques of NVU-Lyndon’s physical plant department.
For NVU’s studio, Warwick, a Grammy award-winning recording engineer, wanted the look and sound of the professional recording studios he was familiar with in Los Angeles, where he worked before he came to NVU. “This type of studio would be booked constantly if it were in L.A.,” he says.
Warwick says he and MBI department chair Joe Gittleman, the founding member of the Mighty Mighty Bosstones, “are excited for students to start creating and capturing the sound of the Northeast Kingdom in the new space.”
The MBI program offers bachelor’s and associate degrees. For more information about the program, visit NorthernVermont.edu/MBI.