Bay Area

Famed Fantasy Studios in Berkeley closing its doors

BERKELEY (KRON) - A famed Berkeley recording studio that recorded some of the biggest albums to come out of the Bay Area has announced it's closing. 

Fantasy Studios is being shuttered as the building its housed in is about to be put on the market. 

Santana, Green Day, Journey, some great Bay Area bands that have cut their tracks there. 

Initially opened in the 70's for jazz musicians signed to Fantasy Records, they expanded their services to other acts a decade later. 

"First client was Journey, who recorded the biggest hit record of 1981... that's where they cut 'Don't Stop Believin'.'"
Author and former San Francisco Chronicle critic Joel Selvin says some major records were made there. 

The complex that housed Fantasy Studios was bought 11 years ago by a real estate developer. 

Their spokesperson says the studio's operator at that time left, and they've been keeping Fantasy afloat since then. 

But now they're shuttering the recording studios as they prepare to sell the property. 

Selvin says part of the reason Fantasy is coming to an end is because of the new reality of the music industry. 

"The entire technology around recording has change so much in the last twenty years, for one thing it's all digital now so there's no tape, all these recordings are done the computer files and the resolution maybe somewhat finer than the ones you get your laptop but not so much make that big a difference. Every laptop comes with automatic equipment at a quarter to twenty years ago would've cost you a quarter million dollars to load in."

Although Fantasy Studios is set to close Sept. 15, its contribution to Bay Area rock and roll history lives on through the songs and albums created there.

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