The SPARS Board of Directors recently announced Christopher Stone (pictured), founder of the legendary Record Plant Studios, as the recipient of the 2012 SPARS Legacy Award. The award will be formally given to Stone at the joint SPARS/AES Student Party to be held at historic Coast Recorders in San Francisco, on October 27, 2012, as part of SPARS' 133rd AES Convention activities.
The SPARS Legacy Award was established by the SPARS Board of Directors as an annual award to honor an industry luminary who historically has demonstrated outstanding leadership, vision and commitment to the recording studio movement in America and the professional recording craft in general.
Stone is a successful music industry executive with a list of credits that spans more than 30 years of hit records, films and outstanding music service businesses and professional associations. He was one of the original co-founders and former president and Chairman of the Board of SPARS. He was also co-founder and executive director of the MPGA, a non-profit guild for leading audio engineers and music producers, which merged into The Recording Academy as the Producers and Engineers Wing.
In 1968, Stone and Gary Kellgren co-founded the Record Plant Recording Studios, which provided audio recordings for acts such as the Rolling Stones, The Eagles, Bruce Springsteen, Bonnie Raitt, Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young, the individual Beatles, Jimi Hendrix, Fleetwood Mac, Heart, Guns & Roses, Whitney Houston, Billy Idol, Motley Crüe, Prince, Chicago, Barbra Streisand and others. In 1989, Stone sold the facility to Chrysalis Records. Today, the Record Plant—led by owner and CEO Rick Stevens and President Rose Mann Cherney—continues the rich tradition established by Stone and is recognized as one of the leading audio recording facilities in the world.
Stone has been involved in many films and live events, including the Concert for Bangladesh, Flashdance, Star Trek, the Oscars, the Grammys, the original Woodstock Festival in 1969 and the 25th anniversary Woodstock event in 1994.
Stone is a successful journalist, providing columns for Mix magazine, Pro Sound News, and Sound On Sound. He is a sought after lecturer, delivering the keynote addresses for a recent European conference for APRS and the 2008 AES Convention. He is a successful author, having published the book Audio Recording for Profit (The Sound of Money). Stone is a member of the faculty at USC, teaching "The Business and Economics of the Audio Recording Industry." He also teaches “Music Industry Entrepreneurship” for the online school at Berklee College of Music.
SPARS is the 33-year-old non-profit association representing professionals in the recording industry. The organization is dedicated to preserving the craft of professional recording by providing mentoring, education, networking and community to its members and the industry as a whole.