In the mid-2000's, Jeff Abercrombie’s time with the multiplatinum band Fuel was spent on the road touring as well as in recording studios. During that time the band scored hits like “Shimmer,” “Innocent,” “Falls on Me” and “Hemorrhage (In My Hands)”—the latter remaining at No. 1 for 12 weeks, attaining double-platinum status.
The band’s founding member bassist, Abercrombie was ultimately led in another direction. “It was a dream of mine to start my own business and since I spent so much time in rehearsal and recording studios, it seemed only natural to open up my own, rehearsal and productions business,” he says.
Abercrombie opened Thud Studios (www.thudstudios.com) in the trendy NoHo Arts District as a facility for band rehearsal lockouts. In 2004, before they even opened their doors, Thud Studios was fully booked. “I couldn’t believe the amount of calls I was getting during construction,” he says. “The difference with us was we were offering premium lockouts.”
Not long after, Thud Studios changed its clientele: “When we first opened we did rehearsal lockouts. I had a lot of bands come in with their recording rigs, but in time more and more of the behind the scenes guys were coming here because they felt comfortable staying for long stretches.”
Thud Studios offers month to month 24-hour access music production suites providing producers, production companies, record labels, publishing companies, musicians and artists clean, vibrant and creative rooms for recording and writing—an environment perfectly suited, Abercrombie says, for maximum productivity. He adds that it is the perfect spot for musicians, producers and songwriters who are looking for privacy to do recording and tracking on the digital equipment they bring in.
“Our clients have their own clients, and who wants to bring clients to their own house? We are a professional building and I take pride in my facility, making sure that everything is always in spic and span condition. Who wants to bring clients into an unmaintained space?” adds Abercrombie.
Building on his initial success, Abercrombie’s later opened a second North Hollywood location. Both lockouts are within walking distance of each other, and close to restaurants, bars, shopping, and, for the people keeping it green, the Metro station. “We are in the heart of The NoHo arts district, which means when you are working those crazy late hours mixing or recording, you can either walk up the street for a quick bite or have it delivered...which I remember all too well!”
Thud Studios’ Vineland location offers a nine room full-service monthly lockout facility (average room size 300 sq. ft), two bathrooms, a large outdoor patio and bar area.
Thud Studios’ Burbank Blvd. location is a fourteen room facility with an average room size of 12’x16’; the largest room (Studio B) is over 700 sq. ft. and Studio A is 550 sq. ft. Most rooms have carpet on the floors as well as adding extra 4 feet of carpet on the walls to deaden the rooms making it more acoustically friendly. Some of the rooms have vocal booths. “A lot of the rooms have ambient track lighting...it’s all about the lighting,” adds Abercrombie.
Thud Studios does not provide equipment; however, they offer referrals to artists who want to work with any of the engineers, producers or songwriters who occupy a room.
Free amenities to monthly clients (many of whom make extended stays ranging from one year to six!) include bottled water, coffee, a kitchenette common area, an outdoor patio with conversation bar and ample parking as well as free high-speed cable WiFi.
“I think we have been successful because our clients can see that we care about our business and about them, and pay attention to the details in serving their needs,” he says. “Word gets around when they see us handling issues on the spot, and they in turn are respectful in the way they take care of their spaces too. Because I have been a musician my whole life, I have been in their shoes and know what they are looking for when they come to a place like this.”
Thud Studios caters to a wide range of clientele from top producers to prominent songwriters––a list of renowned clients is available on the homepage—http://thudstudios.com.