Mayfair Recording Studios was a recording studio located in Primrose Hill, London, England. The studio was originally established in Mayfair, London in the 1960s thus giving the studio its name. Many notable artists and musicians such as Bucks Fizz, Tina Turner, Cliff Richard, The Clash, Pink Floyd, Bee Gees, Blur, Nigel Kennedy and Kroke, and The Smiths have all recorded music at Mayfair.
Prior to 1975, the studio was called Spot Studios owned by Ryemuse Ltd and was located at 64 South Molton St, Mayfair, above the chemist shop. John Hudson worked there as chief engineer joining the company from BBC Television, where he was employed in presentation broadcasting live sound for programmes such as Jimi Hendrix Color Me Pop and Match of the Day. Through the early 1970s, Hudson was the engineer on many hit records to come out of Mayfair Studios including "Vienna" by Ultravox, "Fade to Grey" by Visage and "Making Your Mind Up" by Bucks Fizz. A fuller list of Mayfair's 30 years of hit records is available.
In 1977, John Hudson and his wife Kate took over the management of the studio. They bought the old company in 1979. In 1980, they found a new site in Sharpleshall Street, Primrose Hill, where relocated the studio as the property at 64 South Molton Street, Mayfair, was to be sold. The new studios were designed primarily by Hudson, with input from other studio designers such as Eddie Veale and Ken Shearer acoustic consultant for the Royal Albert Hall. Jim Crockett of Crockett Associates calculated and planned the sound isolation for studio one and reception. Initially the new complex consisted of just two studios, but this grew to six studios over the 30 years the business was to survive.
In the first week in its new location in April 1980 there were five records in the Music Week chart, that had been recorded by Hudson at the old studios in Mayfair. That success carried over to the new studio complex at Primrose Hill and it was the beginning of a 30-year success story. The business eventually expanded to become a 12,000 sq ft (1,100 m2) complex housing Mayfair's Studio 1, Studio 2 and Studio 3, as well as three writing/production rooms. These rooms were occupied by writers, producers and artists such as Matt Rowe (Spice Girls), the writing/production team of Robbie Williams/Guy Chambers, and Herbert Grönemeyer, a successful German singer, actor and composer. A long list of hit records were recorded by an array of producers and artists over the years.
The studios closed in December 2008. A book titled What’s Mayfair Got to Do With It? has been written about the reasons behind the closure. These included insurance companies not paying legitimate claims, plus lawyers and accountants not meeting responsibilities with the net result being chaos.
- "Nigel Kennedy And Kroke Band, The* - East Meets East (CD, Album) at Discogs". Discogs.com. 2003-06-10. Retrieved 2012-12-04.
- "John Hudson: Mayfair Studios". Mayfairstudios.com. Retrieved 2012-12-04.
- "Ultravox Official Website". Ultravox.org.uk. 2012-09-25. Archived from the original on 1997-01-28. Retrieved 2012-12-04.
- "VA - Sound Studio Design: Music, Recording, Radio, TV, Post Production". Vealea.com. Retrieved 2012-12-04.
- "Music Week singles charts April 1980". Music Week. 16 April 2011.
- "What's Mayfair Got to do With It: Mayfair Recording Studios' journey through the financial meltdown: Kate Hudson: 9781449977733: Amazon.com: Books". Amazon.com. Retrieved 2012-12-04.
- "whoops | Sound & Audio Industry News | PSNE". Prosoundnewseurope.com. Retrieved 2012-12-04.
- "Mayfair recording studios in London England". Recordproduction.com. 2006-10-14. Retrieved 2012-12-04.