In the heart of what once was the YorkvilleVillage in the 1960s and 70s, within the walls of two Victorian houses situated at 48 and 38 Yorkville Avenue, lied one of the greatest sound recording studio complexes in Canada.
Eastern Sound Studios was the first studio in Canada to make the quantum leap from an 8-track recording facility to 24-track when it deployed the new Ampex recorders with a 16 and 24-track capability. And by synchronizing two recording decks, it was the first one in the world to deploy a 46-track recording capability
In the 1960s Yorkville was a haven to many US draft dodgers and it was the capital of the hippie sub-culture movement. It was a breeding ground for some of the most noted talents such as Neil Young, Gordon Lightfoot and Joni Mitchell.
These artists garnered a following of youngsters who were disillusioned by the pervading materialistic culture and were disenchanted with the Vietnam War. The youth frequented Yorkville to find solace and like-minded individuals. They rubbed shoulders with their peers and hung out in coffee houses and were inspired by the talent of people like Lightfoot, Young and Mitchell. Bernie Fiedler’s Riverboat Coffee House at 134 Yorkville was one of those places where the youth got their share of inspiration.
The location of Eastern Sound in the midst of all this positioned it as a place where such artistic endeavors were put to vinyl and shared with the rest of the world. Over a decade these artists made their mark on the national and international scene. Artists such as Gordon Lightfoot and Anne Murray made Eastern Sound their home by recording several albums and award winning songs. Other Canadian icons such as Bruce Cockburn, Murray McLaughlin and groups like the Lighthouse also recorded at Eastern. Eastern Sound also built an international reputation by attracting talent such as Elton John, Cat Stevens, Isaac Hayes and Dionne Warwick. The late Jim Henson also recorded the sound track album for the Frog Prince.
- Salim Sachedina September 30, 2010