There comes a time when growth for some musicians means giving back to the community. For David Beeman, Kit Hamon and John Joern -- bandmates in Old Lights -- this means helping their fellow St. Louis musicians find a recording haven in the form of Native Sound.
Native Sound is a cozy recording studio run by Beeman, Hamon and Joern. When they're not renting it out to musicians, Hamon's wife Beth Bombara (also a member of the band) and Beeman's girlfriend Kristin Dennis use the space for their screen printing (Native Prints).
"There are a lot of studios bands can go into and record and self-produce, but not a lot of people investing in the band and trying to help the band grow as musicians and as groups," says Hamon.
The studio, dimly lit with scattered candles and a few light bulbs, has a wide range of instruments -- from classic microphones to a grand piano. The atmosphere is warm and welcoming.
"We've both been in bands for ten, fifteen years. We have a bunch of stuff and we finally decided to pool it all and make something more than some of its parts," says Hamon.
And folks are beginning to notice. Since opening three months ago, bands from near (Cartwheel, Kentucky Knife Fight and Pretty Little Empire, just to name a few) and far (the Harmed Brothers from Oregon) are choosing to utilize the space. And a variety of other projects have already come through Native Sound, ranging from commercials to film.
"We have a serious interest in not only engineering records but producing records here in town," says Beeman. "Which, as far as rock and roll and indie rock, there's not a lot of people doing that -- as far as we know."
The guys gave us a tour of the studio and the space above it (which, although not technically part of the studio, can be an option for bands looking for a bigger sound). It costs $250 a day but the price is negotiable if a band chooses to record for more than a day or their entire record. A full list of the studio's equipment can be found on the next page or on the Native Sound's Facebook page.
Complete gear list on the next page.
Consoles Tascam M3700 32 Channel Yamaha PM1000 16 Channel
Monitors JBL LSR Yamaha NS10 Event TR8 Focal CMS50 Rokit 5
Recorders Tascam MS 16 Revox 2 track Alesis HD24 Black Lion Audio 002 Standard 002 Pro-tools 9 Tascam 16 track 1 inch (coming soon) Tascam 4 track
Microphones Neumann TLM 103 Shure SM 7b (2) Electrovoice RE 20 AKG Solid Tube (2) Cascade Fathead Ribbon (2) Stellar RM3 Riboon Stellar CM4 Cascade Elroy (5) Shure SM57 EV RE15 AKG D1000e (2) AKG C1000s (2) Shure Beta 91 Audix D12 (2) Shure SM58 Shure 565 SD (2)Audix F15 (2) Shure 545 SH Heil PR20 (gold grill)
Outboard Preamps (2) Vintage Bogen Modified Tube Auture Stereo Presonus MP20 Stereo Vintage Stereo Art Tube
Compressors (2) Urei 1176 Urei 1178 DBX 128 DBX 163 JBL M712 RNC
Pianos AB Chase 6ft Grand (This things no baby) Wurlitzer Spinet (Tacked) (2) Fender Rhodes 73 Key Electric Piano Wurlitzer 200A Electric Piano Yamaha CP70 Stage Piano Yamaha CP35 Electric Piano
Organs Hammond T 262 W/percussion and Range Mods (Built in Leslie Speaker) Leslie Model 18 (The Beatle Leslie) Baldwin Fun Machine
Synthesizers Sequential Circuits Prophet 5 Juno 60 Juno 106 Moog Opus 3 Korg Poly 61 Optigan Realistic MG1 MIcro Korg Paia 3700 Modular Paia String Synth Casio SK1 (circuit bent) Casiotone MT 205 Casiotone MT 210 Crumar Performer
Guitars (Electric) Gibson Les Paul Studio Old Kraftsman Semi Hollow (1962) Guild De Armond Hollow Body Epiphone Wildcat w/Bigsby Lakefront Telecaster Harmony Stratotone (1960's) Washburn 335 Epiphone Dot Handmade No Name Telecaster
Guitars (Acoustic) Gibson 12 string (1970s) Alvarez (1970s) Kingston Acoustic for Slide (1970s) Modern Alvarez La Patrie Classical Kay Archtop (1960s) VIntage Bentley
Bass Guitars 1968 Hofner Club Bass (The McCartney Recording Bass) No Name 70's Tele Bass No Name 50's style Tele Bass
Amplifiers and Cabinets Custom Hand Built "Fender Super Reverb" 1962 Standel Custom Sollid State Custom Hand Built "Marshall 18 Watt" Tube amp Fender Tweed Deluxe Harmony H303a Tube amp Kay 1x15 Tube amp Custom Built Bass Head All Tube Peavey 260 c Bass Head Trayner 4x10 Fender 1x15
Drums 1960's Slingerland Silver Sparkle 1978 Gretsch 7 ply maple 1977 Ludwig Rocker 1978 Ludwig Rocker Gretsch Catalina Club 1969 Apollo Red Sparkle 1983 Pearl DRX1 Electronic Drums
Snare Drums Mapex Black Panter Maple and Cherry 7x12 Vintage Slingerland Chrome over Brass 5x14 Custom Built 10 ply maple 6&half x14 Vintage Ludwig Supraphonic
Drum Machines Casio R21 Alesis HR16 Yamaha QY10 Yamaha DD6 Roland TR505
Guitar Pedals Vintage Electro Harmonics Big Muff Vintage Electro Harmonics Small Stone Ibanez Tube Screamer Boss Blues Driver (Modded) Boss Super Overdrive Danelectro Dan Echo Danelectro PB and J Boss Digital Delay Custom Built Boost Custom Built Compressor Electro Harmonics Wiggler Danelectro Chicken Salad Electro Harmonics Bass Muff Elecro Harmonics Octave
Effects Maestro Tape Echo Vintage Lafayette Echo Verb Vintage Effectron 1 (2) Effectron 2