Sound 80

2709 East 25th Street

Where Prince did his first demo tape

Built in 1970, Sound 80 Studio attracted artists as varied as Bob Dylan, Lipps, Inc., the Suicide Commandos, and Cat Stevens to record in their state-of-the-art studio. During the early months of 1977, the relatively-unknown Prince took a turn at the controls, “getting hip to the Polymoogs” and LinnDrum machines the studio provided. Described by the Minnesota Daily as a “multi-talented prodigy from North Minneapolis” who remained “the best kept musical secret in the city of Minneapolis,” Prince began his quest for international fame here. Over several months, he recorded five songs that became his demo tape for major record labels. The tracks, on which Prince did all the vocals and played all the instruments, proved so impressive that he soon garnered a contract with Warner Bros.

Sound 80 closed in the early 1980s.

Images

Sound 80 Studio 1, 1970

Sound 80 Studio 1, 1970

Sound 80 Studio 1, 1970. Artists such as Bob Dylan and Cat Stevens recorded in this studio. It is also the location of the world™s first ever digital recording for commercial release. | Source: Photo credit: Steve Orfield | Creator: Steve Orfield. View File Details Page

Former location of : Sound 80 Studios, 2018.

Former location of : Sound 80 Studios, 2018.

Sound 80 Studios. Prince recorded his demo tapes here which landed him his Warner Bros. recording contract in June 1977. | Source: Photo credit: Daniel R. Pratt, 2018. | Creator: Daniel R. Pratt. View File Details Page

Sound 80 Studio 2, 1970s

Sound 80 Studio 2, 1970s

Sound 80 Studio 2, 1970s. Prince recorded his demos in this studio in early 1977. The song “Funkytown” by Lipps, Inc. was also recorded in this studio. | Source: Photo credit: Steve Orfield. | Creator: Steve Orfield. View File Details Page

Sound 80 Studio 2 control room, 2016

Sound 80 Studio 2 control room, 2016

Sound 80 Studio 2 control room. Prince recorded his demo tapes in this studio in early 1977. | Source: Photo credit: Daniel R. Pratt, 2018. | Creator: Daniel R. Pratt. View File Details Page

Sound 80 Studio 2 live room, 2018

Sound 80 Studio 2 live room, 2018

Sound 80 Studio 2 live room. Prince recorded his demo tapes in this studio in early 1977. The red wall coverings and window between the live room and control room are still intact behind the white coverings. | Source: Photo credit: Daniel R. Pratt, 2018. | Creator: Daniel R. Pratt. View File Details Page

Lobby area of Sound 80 building, 2018

Lobby area of Sound 80 building, 2018

Lobby area of Sound 80 building. Display of key recordings done at Sound 80, including certification of the world™s first ever digital recording for commercial release. | Source: Photo credit: Daniel R. Pratt, 2018. | Creator: Daniel R. Pratt. View File Details Page

Street Address:

2709 East 25th Street [map]

Cite this Page:

Kirsten Delegard, Michael Lansing and Kristen Zschomler, “Sound 80,” Augsburg Digi-Tours, accessed May 20, 2019, http://digitours.augsburg.edu/items/show/35.

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