biography_square button_minus button_plus close_artbutton exhibitionarrow_left exhibitionarrow_right follow_button home_sq-artefacetsViewArtefacts home_sq-exhibitionViewExhibitions home_sq-sqaureSupportUs home_sq-uploadUploadArtefact artist dj keyword_3 industry keyword_member magglass newburger onthisday_button profileicon randomiser_button reload_button soundcloud twitter uploadbutton zoom_in

Artefact

Here's a section of a tape inlay for Drone Studios in Chorlton. I believe it was a popular (and no doubt cheap) studio for bands to record demos in the early 80s, most famously The Smiths who recorded their second set of demos here (and no, this isn't a scan from that particular tape before anyone asks).

I've added other bands that I know have recorded there at one time.
Artefact added : 28th November 2009
by jsz
graham Says –
Is This Paul Robert"s Studio? sometimes known as The Denim Dungeon. as it was soundproofed in the blue stuff.
I may be wrong but I think Spriral Scratch by The Buzzcocks was recorded there.(a very important record)..
COMMENT ADDED 29th November 2009
jsz Says –
Apparently Spiral Scratch was recorded at Indigo Sound, AKA Arrow Sound (I did some Googling).
COMMENT ADDED 29th November 2009
dile Says –
Yeah paul roberts it was. My old band Ricochet recorded there often, having some right good laughs there. Paul used to do a good Rick Parfitt impression where he called himself Rick Parrafin. I heard he died a few years ago. Diane Charlemagne came in and sang backing on one of our demos for us there before she became famous!
COMMENT ADDED 30th November 2009
brushuk Says –
hi all.... it's sad if it's true to hear that paul has died.. i recorded there many times with 'david cairo' & 'rhythm party'.. it was basically a cellar in a house in chorlton, but with good results..
COMMENT ADDED 15th December 2009
Nige Says –
It's painfully sad to hear of Paul 'Machiavelli' Roberts' death. I spent a large percentage of my formative years at Drone and knew Paul, his wife Pam and their son Joe well.

Drone was originally an 8 Track. From what I can recall, Magazine used it as a rehearsal room and the money from that went towards setting up the studio.

I recorded a demo there with my band when I was 15 years old. "We make you sound like Pop Star" was Paul's pseudo-Mexican strapline. Along with 'Rick Paraffin' there was also the West County's very own 'professional pervert'. Seymour Scrotum.

As for bands that recorded there, the list is slighly more impressive that the tags would reveal.

Smack's 'Edward Fox' (a John Peel favourite) was recorded there.

The Boy with the Thorn in his Side was recorded at Drone. Lisa Stansfield got her record deal with demos recorded there. Simply Red, 52nd Street, Marcel King, Swing Out Sister all recorded at Drone (in fact I think some of that list got deals off the back of the demos).

Drone upgraded to 16 track in December 1984. I only know this as I was the first person to record a demo with the new setup!

After I went off to University Paul and I lost touch, although I did see him in about 1989 with a view to doing some more recording there. I also saw him shortly afterwards in the Royal Oak looking the worse for wear.

I'd be grateful if anyone is able to throw any light on what happened after that...

Drone was a VERY important studio for Manchester music, make no mistake.
COMMENT ADDED 30th May 2010
dile Says –
ha ha Seymour Scrotum....that is sooo Paul Roberts! ah memories! :)
COMMENT ADDED 30th May 2010
finnerty Says –
I knew Paul [Drone],he was a good guy--liked a drink!!!.. another band to add to those recorded there would be Black Grape, they did some demos there,.. i used to hang out there quite a bit me gavin wheelan [james drummer].. maybe James' did some recording there to ?.. there should be more researched about that place.. lots happpend there ...! i think what really ended it for Paul was when his wife filed for divorce, which meant he had to sell the house and with that obviously the studio had to go.. very sad. RIP Paul Drone.
COMMENT ADDED 9th October 2012
bladesy Says –
I recall this studio, Not sure if Foreign Press recorded there, but I know myself and FP's guitarist did (with a few others), great studio.
COMMENT ADDED 21st November 2012
thewho1965 Says –
Hi Finnerty, my late brother was a good guy and like most people who frequented Ellesmere Road/Drone at the time, he liked a drink. However, I do get fed up with the slanted and stereotypical view of him being this dependent drinker which his infamous wife was more than happy to promote at the time and no doubt still does, to help justify her behaviour. I think it would be more appropriate to remember him as an excellent graphic artist and a fine musician in his own right and also a very good sound engineer, who recorded some of the best bands to come out of Manchester.
COMMENT ADDED 21st February 2014
john wimbleton Says –
so sorry to hear about Paul, a genuine original and all round great guy.Recorded at Drone with my band Continental Breakfast in 1982. "i kill you for a cigarette, i kill you for nothing"
COMMENT ADDED 9th April 2014
Rowland Jones Says –
Great to see people remember Edward Fox! I'd known Paul since 1972-3. I met Smack through Arrow Studios where I worked, and so we produced the single. The chorus, is the band, me and Paul.
COMMENT ADDED 24th April 2015
Rowland Jones Says –
To JSZ
Re Arrow and Indigo
They were in fact two different studios, but both were owned by Greendow, and they were in different buildings. Indigo was on Gartside Street virtually opposite wherer Granada was, whereas Arrow as on Bootle Street just down from the police station.
COMMENT ADDED 24th April 2015
Rupert Says –
so sorry to hear about the loss of Paul (was close friend to his sister). No-one has mentioned The Lamplight in Chorlton where we used to go.
COMMENT ADDED 10th April 2017
MacIain MacDonald Says –
I recorded there in 1979, while attending Manchester U. Some of it was released in Canada in 1980, under the name Melinite/art of the state.
Paul was an absolute joy to have worked with. To read here that he's gone saddens me. I wonder if Terry Maynard, percussionist, and a guitarist named Carl who helped me on those sessions years ago are still around? I still listen to the life you gave those tracks. Happy Christmas, everyone.
COMMENT ADDED 25th December 2018
Rowland Jones Says –
I produced Edward Fox by Smack at Drone. Paul sadly died some years ago - cancer of the jaw,I believe.
COMMENT ADDED 25th December 2018
If you'd like to leave a comment, please Login. Login