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Recording Studio Used by Bruce Springsteen, David Bowie and Others Shuts Down

Ilya S. Savenok / Bryan Bedder, Getty Images
Ilya S. Savenok / Bryan Bedder, Getty Images

New York’s famous Power Station recording studio, used in the creation of many classic albums over the years, has shut down.

The future of the studio is now uncertain, but Variety writes that it was reportedly purchased by Berklee College of Music. The Manhattan-based facility held a closing party earlier this week, but Berklee’s ownership could be announced on Sept. 1.

The famed studio, which is formally known as Avatar Studios, was an actual power plant before producer Tony Bongiovi and Bob Walters turned it into a recording studio in 1977. Since then, some of music’s biggest names have recorded there — including Bruce Springsteen (Born in the U.S.A. was made at Power Station), David Bowie (Let’s Dance), Bob Dylan (Infidels) and Bon Jovi, the band led by Bongiovi’s cousin Jon Bon Jovi.

Word of the studio’s closing began surfacing a couple years ago. Berklee’s purchase price is reportedly somewhere between $23 million and $28 million. “It is unclear as of yet what the Boston-based Berklee plans to do with the space, but word is that, after significant upgrades, it will remain dedicated to music in some form,” Variety notes. “The hope is that it will be available to artists wishing to rent the rooms, in addition to Berklee students. It may also serve the Broadway community as a place to record cast albums, says a source.”

In addition to all of the classic records made at the Power Station over the years (Elton John, Billy Joel and Peter Gabriel also recorded there), Jon Bon Jovi reportedly swept the floors there before his big break and recorded a song for a Star Wars Christmas album in 1980, and the short-lived ’80s supergroup the Power Station — which included singer Robert Palmer and members of Duran Duran — took their name from the studio.

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