Matt Ross-Spang, an American record producer, Grammy award-winning engineer and mixer has just opened the doors of ‘Southern Grooves’, a brand new, custom designed studio in Memphis, Tennessee.
Located in what was once the Sears cafeteria on the second floor of Crosstown Concourse, a “vertical urban village”, the build started pre-pandemic, in August 2020. With the expertise of acousticians Steven Durr and Matt Schlachter, a 3000 sq ft recording studio was designed where sound and feel are prioritised in every room.
The space consists of a live room, control room, a long hallway (for reverb) echo chamber, plus a lounge, office, tech Shop and EMT plate room. The fact that the live room has an undulating ceiling and emphasises no 90-degree angles or parallel surfaces, means that the sounds created gives the impression that the space is a lot bigger than it actually is.
VDC Trading supplied 30,000ft of Van Damme cable for the Southern Grooves install – specifically the Ecoflex and PVC AES series cables. These cables can do AES, DMX512, RS422 and even analogue audio in one slim, elegant flexible cable solution. Van Damme LSZH Purple Series, 2. 4 and 8 core, as well as the Van Damme Green Series, single, 2, 8 and 24 cores, were used throughout.
Matt Ross-Spang said: “This has always been a dream of mine and I couldn’t have asked for a better group of folks to help realise it. I have been fortunate to work in some legendary studios, built by my heroes. This was my inspiration for Southern Grooves. From the very first visit, Steven Durr was indispensable. He and I come from the same philosophy implementing classic techniques/ materials with modern advancements to create something distinct and timeless. Southern Grooves is the only studio I’m aware of that’s located in such a unique environment as Crosstown. This building is an antenna for creative people and it’s an absolute privilege to base myself next to mission-based businesses like the Memphis Listening Lab and Church Health. Crosstown also has a high school, bar, art galleries , residences, several restaurants, and even a state of the art theatre.
“The physical wire and wiring of a new studio is one of the most vital and often overlooked steps in the process. It was necessary for me to not only use high quality wire but to wire every room for recording purposes. I often find the best sounds in the most unusual rooms. Van Damme came highly recommended to me and it was one of a million decisions I’ll never have to second guess. VDC went above and beyond to get me everything in a timely manner during an unpredictable pandemic!”
Greg Addington, national sales manager at Fingerprint Audio, Van Damme’s North American Distributor, said: “We only work with the best products and our partnerships with both the end user and the manufactures are incredibly important to us. Van Damme cable was chosen for its rich pedigree, extreme flexibility and outstanding reputation in other facilities such as Abbey Road Studios in London. VDC was able to fulfil the order quickly and effectively despite logistical issues into the USA with pandemic restrictions. Cable was supplied cut to size as requested, neatly labelled and ready to be installed with ease.”
Herpreet Singh Kaur, commercial director at VDC Trading, concluded: “It was an absolute pleasure working with Matt and the team at Fingerprint Audio to help bring this dream to reality. It’s such an exciting and important project and we look forward to hearing what comes out of the studio in the near future.”