Professional Sound - August 2017 | Page 35

STUDIO G former colleagues at Steve ’ s Music , who Chambers says “ really believed in what [ he ] was doing .” That ’ s largely because there wasn ’ t really anything like what he was proposing in the area . “ The mindset in Montreal at the time seemed to be that if you put really good equipment in these studios , it was going to get wrecked ,”
Chambers offers . “ But to me , it was , if you want a pro clientele , you have to have pro-level gear , and up-and-comers would be thrilled to play on that kind of gear , so I knew I could find a balance .” And that ’ s exactly what he did . Studio Base Bin made a big impression off the bat , with the city ’ s music community embracing the business and its founder , who many recognized from his time at Steve ’ s and his live performances .
After a few years , Base Bin moved to its second location , still in the same area of the Plateau , and enjoyed a successful run nearly two decades long .
“ During that time , I was still playing live from time to time with [ popular pop-rock band ] Sky , when Karl Wolf was the lead singer there , and then starting playing with Karl solo while still running the studios ,” Chambers recalls ; however , the studios were soon taking up so much of his time that he had to put performing live on ice for some time .
“ We had a great run there on Saint Laurent with so many big names coming through ,” he enthuses , listing off the likes of Queen Latifah , Chromeo , The Barr Brothers , and film actor Gary Sinise as repeat clients .
In addition to the rehearsal studios , Chambers was also operating a recording studio out of the space and collaborating with plenty of artists as a songwriter , producer , and engineer . The list
4275 Frontenac Montreal , QC H2H 2M4 514-281-1547 www . studiobasebin . com of acts with whom he ’ s worked on those fronts is diverse and impressive , including the likes of Simple Plan , Dream Theater , Debbie Gibson , Moist , and many others .
In fact , his latest collaborations with jazz vocalist Coral Egan earned a JUNO nomination , which came just before he shut down Studio Base Bin ’ s Saint Laurent location and contemplated his next move .
In what was essentially an empty warehouse on Frontenac Street in the Delorimier neighbourhood showing its barest bones , Chambers saw the future of his business . He shared his plans with a friend that helped him mock up a rough idea of the layout , “ and even then , we came up with a great facility ,” he enthuses . “ Seven fully-equipped rehearsal studios plus my recording control room , a conference room , a mezzanine for a video editing suite …” There ’ s even a small boutique in partnership with local instrument retailer Musique Max .
The conversion process lasted about two years – a long time for Chambers , considering his livelihood was basically on the line . “ It was a long process with a lot of red tape and a lot of stop-and-go ,” he recalls , enjoying the benefit of now being on the other side of it all . “ At one time , we were thinking it might not happen , and it stayed like that until the walls started going up .”
Subsequently , the final six months of the makeover sped right along . That ’ s in large part due to the contributions of many who believed in the business , including film and TV composer Ray Fabi , Tom Cronin , Chambers ’ business partner Michael Battista , and Zach Tahi , who funded and contracted the build .
Chambers had his sights set on reopening in the spring of 2017 , just ahead of summer festival season in Montreal . “ It ’ s kind of my Christmas , this time of
RECORDING CONTROL ROOM year ,” he says , speaking to Professional Sound after a few months of operation in