In 1982 I officially hung a sign for my new recording studio in Falls Church, VA -- Cue Recording. I started with a friend’s Teac 3440 multi-track analog tape machine and a Fender live mixing console in my basement. My love of music started out banging the keys on an old player piano which morphed into banging the skins as a drummer in an alternative rock band. After several years of evolving from a 4 track to an 8 track, then to a 16 track, then to a 24 track, while recording my group Dark Victory and other local artists, it was time to expand and offer a larger space with fancier gear to my clients.
In 1987 I rented 3,300 square feet in a commercial space in Fall Church, VA and hired a renowned electro-acoustical architect, Neil Muncy, also past Chair of the esteemed Canadian chapter of the Audio Engineering Society. He pioneered the first RFZ (reflection free zone) control room design with the legendary Dr. Peter D’Antonio. This architecture incorporated parts of the LEDE (live end dead end) design that were leaps and bounds superior to older “compression rooms” so I chose this latest design architecture for Cue's new control room. It was a decision that has proven to achieve superior acoustics, as modern day mixing environments all strive for this same reflection free, acoustically “flat” design. Using sophisticated TDS (time delay spectrometry) and TEF (time energy frequency) analysis, we proudly achieved an RFZ certified and internationally sought after mixing room.
Cue's gold and double platinum albums, a Billboard #1 hit, several grammy nominated recordings, Ampex gold reel awards, and WAMA “Best Studio” awards, all are testaments to the merits of the wonderfully talented artists, engineers and producers that have enjoyed recording and mixing their music with us. After 30+ years in our current location, we’ve had the privilege of working with some of the most interesting and talented local, national and international artists in the world!
About 25 years into Cue's audio recording tenure, we decided to open an audio engineering school for aspiring students. We were an early pioneer of the "One on One" teaching philosophy and quickly became the only Virginia State (SCHEV) certified postsecondary audio engineering and music production educational institution in Virginia. We have had the pleasure of graduating hundreds of skilled, new audio engineers seeking a livelihood in the audio engineering industry. Several of them have gone on to record gold records and be hired by Cue. Today we continue to instruct students looking for a comprehensive and unique learning experience.
Discussing the many advancements in audio technology and recording equipment Cue has implemented to help achieve the above would require more reading patience than you may have at this time, so I’ll quickly mention that my philosophy has always been to create comfortable and affordable studios manned by personable and skilled engineers, along with providing the best of the best equipment which has included audio brands like Studer tape machines, API, Trident and SSL consoles, Avid Pro Tools HD systems, Neve, Teletronix, Urei, Lexicon, EMT, Manley, SOTA, Genelec, Dangerous Audio, Empirical Labs, Waves, NTI, GML, Focusrite, Millenia, Avalon, TC Electronics, API, Kush, Systech, EV, Delta Labs, DBX, Westlake, Valley People, Bryston, Focal, Yamaha, ITI, Dolby, MCI, Otari, AKG, Neumann, Crown, Tubetech, Korg, Roland, Nord, EMU, Moog, Quantum, Orban, Allison, Eventide, and Lexicon equipment; along with an impressive arsenal of new and vintage microphones.
After 25 years at our current address, we decided to buy our 15,000 sq ft building so we could provide our clients a large, comfortable facility for their projects including a free parking lot directly in front of and on the side of the studio. To further enhance our clients experience at Cue, we have brought in some really cool tenants in the same building including Action Music (an extraordinary guitar and amplifier shop), The CD Cellar (a vinyl record and CD shop with tens of thousands of discs ), along with Orpheus Music (a high end piano shop run by caring experts). Please stop by and enjoy the vibe of what we call "Music Row" in Falls Church.
I'd like to add a special tribute to my long time friend, engineer, and producer Jim Ebert, who accompanied Cue and me through many of the above accomplishments, and the amazing Ken Schubert who has unswervingly been at the chief engineering helm for close to 30 years with us, along with Blaine Misner who started at Cue as an intern15 years ago and has become a skilled recording and mastering engineer, and John Brooks who joined us several years ago also doing a fabulous job of creating happy Cue clients. Lastly, a big round of applause to Dusty Rose for his dedication and professionalism as our studio manager for close to 20 years.
Many thanks to everyone that has stepped foot into Cue, for without them and their confidence in our staff and studio, and their patronage as valued clients, I'd still be in my basement behind a Teac 3440 tape deck.
Owner and Founder
Cue Recording Studios