History Of The Muscle Shoals Sound Studios

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Muscle Shoals Sound Studios was built, and used as a recording studio from 1969 till the mid-1980s. During its prime it had several phenomenal artists come to record, from the likes of The Rolling Stones, Aretha Franklin, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Bob Dylan, Willie Nelson, Percy Sledge, Art Garfunkel, and several other talented musicians. At its peak, the Muscle Shoals Sound Studios was one of the most renowned recording studios in the nation. The Muscle Shoals Sound Studio was a pivotal recording studio that helped artists from all over the globe, cultivate their sound. Genres from rhythm and blues to rock to pop were continuously being recorded in the 1960s and 70s.
Throughout the years, the name of Muscle Shoals has always been affiliated with the rival studio FAME to anyone who isn’t involved in the music recording industry. Today there is a sign on the side of Fame Studios in Muscle Shoals that says “Where it all started”. (Fuqua 5) The establishment of the Shoals recording industry can be credited to Rick Hall and his studio. (Fuqua 5) In 1969 four locally known artist known as the Muscle Shoals Rhythm Section decided to leave their old recording studio that they had worked for called FAME Records, to open up their own recording studio. The group all started their careers with the illustrious house band at Rick Hall’s legendary FAME Recording Studios in Muscle Shoals. They worked with numerous vocal talents: from the likes of Wilson Pickett, Aretha Franklin, Clarence Carter, Arthur Conley and Etta James. (http://www.alamhof.org/inductees/timeline/1995/muscle-shoals-rhythm-section/) Once they all decided to depart from the label, they brainstormed on how would they differentiate themselves from other studios and make a name for them...

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...influenced by many genres of music and wanted to cultivate a sound that was their own and like nothing else out there. Artist flocked to them to receive something that was completely different and to bring out put out the best recordings that were possible. The studio was influenced an array of artists who possessed individuality, a sound that differentiated them from other artists, and a will to try to experiment. The studio created a sound like no other studio and much different from the prominent studios from the north, west, and south. It was a studio that will leave a legacy of risk takers, who had a desire to produce a sound that would stand the test of time and influence many generations to come. Their production style mixed genres and may music boundary less. It influenced the sound of today’s music to not be boxed in or classified as just one type of genre.

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