Studios become famous because of their clientele. Abbey Road will always be inseparable from The Beatles in history but Abbey Road Studios and the whole EMI support structure deserves its own credit not just as a place that produced great sounding records over many decades, but as an infrastructure that nurtured engineers, technicians, producers; people who researched, invented, built the equipment and developed techniques that still set a benchmark for contemporary sound recording.
We can read about the quirky and often regimented methods of recording, devised over its first four decades in existence for classical and 'serious' styles of music, imposed on the 'Pop' generation of the sixties. We can smile at the pictures of men in white coats, engineers in suit and tie and management who demanded that everything was done by the book, often slow to adapt to the changes in multi track recording demanded by the new pop kids.
‘On Ringo's drum sound, I wanted to move the mic closer to the bass drum. Well, we weren't allowed. I was caught putting the mic about three inches from the bass drum, and I was reprimanded. I said, “Look, this is the bass drum sound we've got, and we don't want to touch it.” And so I was sent a letter, from one of the guys in the office down the corridor, giving permission — only on Beatles sessions — to put the microphone three inches from the drum.’ Geoff Emerick.