NEW YORK CITY, New York—Beatles enthusiasts and recording buffs will now have the opportunity to view one of the pair of original Studer J37 multitrack recorders used in the recording of the Beatles’ historic Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band album. The J37 recorder, on loan from Studer’s own museum, will be included in the newly renovated exhibit dedicated to the Beatles at The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame and Museum, scheduled to reopen later this month. The timing of this contribution to the museum coincides perfectly with Studer’s 60th anniversary in the professional audio and recording business.
The Studer J37 originally went into production in 1964 and became the first 4-channel studio-quality tape recorder on the market. The two recorders used on the album were located in Studio Two at the legendary EMI Recording Studios in London (later to become known as Abbey Road Studios).
“The Beatles exhibit has always been one of our most popular exhibits and Studer’s J37 multitrack recorder will make an exciting addition,” said Jim Henke, vice president of exhibitions and curatorial affairs at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum.
Bruno Hochstrasser, executive vice president of sales for Studer, remembers that period well, having served 37 years with the company. Also celebrating his 60th birthday this year, Hochstrasser noted, “The J37 made history as the first studio-quality multitrack recorder to be produced. The Beatles’ use of it in the recording of the Sgt. Pepper album was confirmation of the J37’s innovative legacy. Studer has an amazing heritage in the music business, with numerous major albums having been recorded on Studer tape machines. Loaning this piece of history to the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame reminds us of Studer’s long association with the recording industry and especially Rock and Roll music.”
Andy Trott, president of twin companies Soundcraft and Studer (and a self-confessed Beatles “addict”) added, “A few years ago, when I visited one of Studer’s studios in our offices near Zurich in Switzerland, I saw this J37 for the first time and got a thrill at the thought of John, Paul, George and Ringo standing alongside it 40 or so years ago listening to a take of ‘Sgt. Pepper’s!’ I hope visitors to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame will enjoy the experience of being in the presence of a piece of music history as much as I did.”
The eighth studio album for The Beatles, Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band was recorded over a 129-day period using a pair of Studer J37s. The album was released on June 1, 1967, in the U.K. followed by the U.S. debut on June 2.
Geoff Emerick, the audio engineer behind the success of the album was asked to re-engineer a tribute album marking the 40th anniversary on June 1, 2007. For this recording, Emerick used two of the original Studer J37 multitrack recorders as well as two of the original EMI mixing consoles provided by Mark Knopfler and Lenny Kravitz. Additionally, Emerick borrowed essential vintage AKG microphone models from the AKG Museum in Vienna, Austria.
About the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum
The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum is the nonprofit organization that exists to educate visitors, fans and scholars from around the world about the history and continuing significance of rock and roll music. It carries out this mission both through its operation of a world-class museum that collects, preserves, exhibits and interprets this art form and through its library and archives as well as its educational programs.
The museum is open seven days a week from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. On Wednesdays, the Museum is open until 9 p.m. Museum admission is $22 for adults, $17 for seniors (65+), $13 for youth (9-12), $18 for adult residents of Greater Cleveland. Children under 8 and Museum members are free. The Museum is generously funded by Cuyahoga County residents through Cuyahoga Arts and Culture. When you become a member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum, the world of rock and roll becomes yours to explore. Call 216.515.1939 for information on becoming a member. For general inquiries, please call 216.781.ROCK.
Studer is a unit of Harman International Industries Inc. (www.harman.com). Harman International designs, manufactures and markets a wide range of audio and infotainment products for the automotive, consumer and professional markets, and maintains a strong presence in the Americas, Europe and Asia, employing more than 11,000 people worldwide. The Harman International family of brands includes AKG®, Audioaccess®, Becker®, BSS®, Crown®, dbx®, DigiTech®, Harman Kardon®, Infinity®, JBL®, Lexicon®, Mark Levinson®, Revel®, QNX®, Soundcraft® and Studer®. Harman International’s stock is traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol HAR.