The early days
Salt Studios was established in 2001.
The East Brighton premises was chosen for its ease of access and proximity to great local restaurants and cafes. This was deemed a major factor when setting up a recording studio. Other business on our doorstep include an IGA supermarket (With a bottle shop) and Jaycar Electronics. The number 64 tram from the CBD runs right past our door and there is ample parking nearby.
The studio facilities were constructed between 1998 and 2000 and were ready for sessions in late January of 2001. No expense was spared in the construction of the studios, all internal cabling and materials used were of the highest quality available.
Upon opening its doors Salt quickly became known for producing quality recordings and for providing a relaxed and creative space for musicians to work in.
Numerous Album and EP projects were recorded here in our early days for both independent musicians and labels and many claimed chart success upon their release.
A passion for Live Recording
In 2003 we did away with our then Adat format in the studio and moved over to running the most powerful Pro Tools system on the market.
The Adats weren’t discarded though, they were installed along with a Mackie 24-8 console in the now famous Duke Of Windsor Hotel in Prahran, this is where Salt Live was born. We immediately gained a reputation for recording awesome live gigs with dozens of live EP’s being released from these recordings. Some of the hundreds of bands recorded at the Duke at this time include The Fauves, Dallas Crane, Airbourne and the now world famous Jet.
In 2005 our live recording system was updated to a 32 inoput Pro Tools HD rig and was moved to The Palace in St kilda as part of the Rollover sessions. Here we recorded and documented dozens of fine live performances on the Palace main stage by bands such as Electric Mary and The Sparrows just to name a few.
By early 2006 we had amassed close to 800 live recordings with the archive still growing. At this time an attempt was made to secure a one hour per week time slot on local community radio station PBSFM to showcase these “straight from the venue stage” recordings and shed the light on Melbourne’s amazing live music scene.
The concept was soundly welcomed by PBS but a reasonable time slot could not be found due to current programming commitments. With the help of others a website was created and with the consent of the artists, recordings were uploaded online and showcased to all parts of the world via the New Found Frequency Network.
From August 2006 to September 2008 New Found Frequency (NFF) hosted and recorded Australian Music Showcases at some of the world’s largest music conferences including Popcomm in Berlin and Canada’s North by North East. NFF also hosted its own Australian Music Showcases in cities such as London, Detroit, Amsterdam Toronto Moscow and Istanbul. Over 60 up and coming Australian artists totalling over 200 live recordings were captured on these tours
In late 2006 due to the volume of recordings we were undertaking we developed a technique for producing instant CD recordings. Live performances were recorded and mixed on the fly and CD duplicators were employed to duplicate multiple copies of the performance to sell at the merch desk straight after the show. This became very popular with international touring and high profile Australian artists.
All in all over fourty live albums were instantly released in venues all over Australia by artists such as Something for Kate, Tim Rogers, Ash Grunwald, Weddings Parties Anything, Jeff Martin, Clutch, Royal Crown Review, Paul Kelly, The Brian Jonestown Massacre. These albums have today become sort after collectors items due to their limited release and for being hand signed by the artist.
In late 2007 Salt built a stand alone tracking suite side stage at The HiFi in Melbourne and later on provided the same service to artists in the their Brisbane venue. Salt’s studio set up at the HiFi remained there until the start of 2014. Some amazing performances were captured at both Hifi venues including performances by artists such as The Tea Party, Birds of Tokyo, Decoder Ring, Then Drones, Regurgitator, Josh Pike, Kate Miller Heitke, The Bronx and who can forget those crazy pirate rockers Alestorm.
Other artists recorded by Salt Studios include Jimmy Barnes, Sinead O’Connor, Luka Bloom, Sarah Blasko, Plain White Tees, Paulo Nitini, Tex Perkins and You Am I. Over the years we have recorded over 1,500 live performances and still provide this service to this day.
In Mid 2009 Salt Studios owner Peter Frawley met with long time friend Kye Thomas at a mutual friend’s wedding in South Australia. These discussions led to both Peter and Kye creating what is now known as The College Of Sound And Music Production (COSAMP) Both COSAMP and Salt Studios are now owned by Peter and Kye’s company PKY Media.
COSAMP has since become Australia’s largest provider of Music Technology VET in Schools training resources and auspices over 200 music programs in all states of Australia. Thousands of studio hours were used in creating these resources that are accessed on a weekly basis by over 4,000 students.
Fast forward to today
Salt Studios has recently undergone a renovation and has never sounded better.
At the heart of the studio is a vintage AMEK Hendrix console. The console is currently being rebuilt strip by strip by Lucas Miles Audio owner Dean Horler, with original parts sourced and brought in from the UK
A selection of various other vintage outboard gear and microphones make up the rest of our vast equipment list ensuring that everything you need to make a great record is here.
We have also ventured into the world of online recording giving us the ability to record voice over or instrument overdubs from any studio in the world using the the latest online protocols.
Our studio B facility didn’t miss out on an upgrade either, it has now become a flexible state of the art AV editing suite and online training space. Studio B houses all the latest DAW software platforms including Pro Tools, Ableton, Cubase, Logic, Studio One and is the perfect space for songwriting and pre production.
We still to this day provide bands, solo artists and creative agencies with the same level of service we are known for and many fine recordings still leave our studio every day. We endeavour to stay at the forefront of the Melbourne music scene by offering a quality service and product at an affordable price.
Thanks for taking the time to read about our history. It’s been an amazing ride and we wouldn’t have had it any other way.