SBE 56 Meeting Minutes – 5-25-22

In Person Meeting – Church Studio

Program:  The Church Studio Tour:

Originally built in 1915 as Grace Methodist Episcopal Church, the stone structure located at 304 South Trenton Avenue in Tulsa’s Pearl District was converted to a recording studio in 1972 by Leon Russell, who bought the building for his diverse recording activities and as a home for Shelter Records. Russell eventually sold the building. Tulsa musician Steve Ripley, leader of The Tractors and partners bought it in 1987 and retained ownership until 2006.

Numerous musicians recorded at The Church Studio during Russell’s ownership, including Willie Nelson, Eric Clapton, Bonnie Raitt, Dwight Twilley, Dr. John, Charlie Wilson, JJ Cale, The Gap Band, Freddie King, Phoebe Snow and Peter Tosh. Tom Petty, with his early band Mudcrutch, signed his first record deal with Shelter Records. The studio’s equipment includes a NEVE 8068 mixing console purchased from Daniel Lanois that is pictured on the album cover of the Bob Dylan album “Time Out of Mind”.

The building has reopened after a five year, $10 Million renovation as a recording studio, concert and event venue and an audio engineering school.