Making an album can be a daunting and expensive process for musicians — especially if they’re just starting out. Having spent a lot of time in the music trenches themselves, friends and longtime members of Denver’s music scene Tyler Glasgow (known for his work in pop-soul-rock band PLACES) and Jack Roberts (of the now-defunct power-screamo outfit Caramel Carmela) know the overwhelming feeling that comes with recording music professionally. Earlier this year, together with friend and audio engineer Jeff Hummel, they launched Streetlight Audio, a recording studio with a new mission: Help musicians make great albums by giving them a hand every step of the way.
“We wanted to keep the community in mind when building a studio. We offer an affordable service, which is really very important in the world of recording,” says Glasgow, whose house is home to Streetlight. “But we [are] also a place where people really care about the song that you’re bringing in to record.” Unlike the typical — and often pricey — hourly rates that other recording studios charge, Streetlight Audio works on a song-by-song or project-by-project basis. That way, there’s no stress on the musician to wrap up a session on a song that might be far from finished. It’s all about creating a relaxed environment in which the creative process can thrive, no matter how long it takes.
“For me, when I’ve been in the studio [as a musician], it’s always like, ‘Hurry up and track drums, lay this down and do this.’ There’s no time to go back and be creative and really explore each work,” says Roberts. “So that’s what we want to bring: We want to make every single song the best song that it can be and give each artist hopefully more than what they envisioned.”
Streetlight Audio is already working hard on setting itself apart by offering a team of producers — Glasgow, Roberts and Hummel work on every project together — as well as the option to workshop songs and arrangements with Roberts and Glasgow prior to laying down a track. Their combined years of experience playing in touring bands have left the musicians with a desire to build the most nurturing environment possible, and that means giving artists — brand-new groups and established acts alike — the freedom and time to work through a track.
Another important factor for the Streetlight team is the ability to make a lasting impression and a connection with the community of musicians — and music fans — it wants to serve. For the Love of Locals, a live show that Roberts has been producing since last March, is a recurring showcase that highlights Denver-based musicians from all genres. Streetlight Audio is now sponsoring the free event and offers a free song-recording session for all participating acts. The hope is that bands and fans will come together and enjoy music while using the time and space to meet other people with mutual interests.
“When I was fifteen years old, I would go to the Marquis by myself to watch local bands like Signal to Noise, the Titan Courageous and Fear Before the March of Flames,” says Roberts. “I didn’t have anybody to go with me, but I would just go. I wanted to offer an event where people could come and see and talk with local bands and maybe discover new music and just feel good about it, like I felt about it when I was young.”
This Thursday, March 3, in the Moon Room at Summit Music Hall, For the Love of Locals will celebrate its seventh edition of the series, as well as its one-year anniversary. Now that Streetlight Audio is up and running, Glasgow, Roberts and Hummel are excited for the future, looking forward to working with new crops of musicians as they step into the studio or onto the stage for the first time. “It all ties into our view of this community studio; we get up every day and do this for all of the people in the music scene,” says Glasgow. “They have a place where they can go and trust that we have their back and share in the same goal: making your band sound awesome.”
For the Love of Locals 7
8 p.m. Thursday, March 3, Moon Room at Summit Music Hall, 1902 Blake Street, 303-487-0111, $0-$5, all ages.
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For the Love of Locals 7 features Chella & the Charm, Thunderthief, AOMM, the Uglys and Sindian. For more information on this show or to connect with Streetlight Audio or schedule a tour, visit the recording studio on Facebook.