Converted from paper version of the Broad Ripple Gazette (v14n12)
Village Recording Studio - by Mario Morone
posted: Jun. 09, 2017
Brian Wheat is the owner and operator of Village Recording Studio at 841 Westfield Boulevard that opened in late March.
"Village Recording produces music, podcasts, and audiobooks, as well as educational videos and live Internet broadcasts," says Wheat. "I hope people find it to be friendly and affordable as well."
Wheat's love for music and recording began at age 12 when he held a guitar for the first time. "My dad taught me a few chords and I was hooked." He got a taste of the recording process in high school, when his band won two hours of recording time in a studio. "This was back in the days when Q95 had a radio show where they played local bands and people called in to vote on their favorite song played that evening. We won and in that brief time in the studio, I fell in love with the process of recording and producing and have done it in some form or another ever since," he recalled.
Wheat, a 20-year resident of Warfleigh, dreamed of opening a studio here on many walks through Broad Ripple. "On one walk in late December 2016, I saw a 'For Lease' sign on one of the small shops in the Carter building on Westfield Boulevard. Later that night, I talked to Brian Moldt - my band mate in The Porchmen - about the idea. We quickly decided to partner together."
"Our location in the heart of Broad Ripple is an important part of the vibe I want to create," says Wheat. "In the 1950s, when recording studios were just starting to emerge, they were very visible and often on main street. Sun Studios, for example, is located right on Union Street in Memphis," he continued. "I like the social aspect of this visibility." Wheat also has fond memories of Renee's, the French restaurant that occupied the space many years ago. "When I first walked into this space, I had a flashback of having dinner with my wife over 15 years ago," he reminisced.
"Of course, music is a big part of what we do at Village Recording. We love working with artists to create music - whether they are a singer/songwriter, instrumentalist, or a full band," says Wheat. "I am currently working with a local singer/songwriter to help him bring his songs to life." In addition to the technical side of things, Wheat is often asked for help with composing, arranging and even playing instruments, if needed. "I play bass and guitar so I am adding some of these tracks in addition to the singing and acoustic guitar tracks." For more elaborate projects, the studio is equipped with an arsenal of high quality virtual instruments including a full orchestra as well as pianos, synthesizers, drums, and special sound effects.
Part of the control room at Village Recording Studio.
In the past few years, Wheat has ventured into composing and producing music for TV, film and video. Wheat's music has been heard on CBS, MTV, VH1, NBC, and E!, among others. "That's another aspect of what we do at Village Recording - we work with producers to complete the audio side of video projects, whether it is recording a music soundtrack, doing voice-over, or adding sound effects. "I want to help Indiana filmmakers compete in Indie films - a properly recorded and mixed audio soundtrack can help locally-made films stand out among the crowd."
Inside the recording booth.
In addition to music, recording podcasts and audiobooks is becoming a big part of Village Recording services. "With today's technology, anyone can have their own talk show," says Wheat. "We have local business owners who are discovering that recording a monthly or weekly podcast is an affordable way to engage customers and drive more foot traffic into their shops." Audiobooks were on the menu of services from the very beginning. "Our very first customer was a local author who is taking the self-published route on Amazon. Adding an audio format will increase sales and interest in the print version of her book as well," he noted.
The addition of video and live broadcasting has expanded Village Recording's reach as well. "We bought technology to broadcast live on Facebook so a local singer-songwriter could do a live concert from Village Recording Studio and then take questions from the fans watching anywhere in the world." Just recently, Wheat added "green screen" capabilities which has enabled them to produce tutorials, educational videos and even commercials. "We are working with a local automotive sales consultant to produce a series of tutorials on his unique approach to selling. "The 'green screen' allows his producer to insert background graphics and images in post-production to emphasize talking points"
Recording inquiries can be answered at www.villagerecording.com, e-mailing Brian at firstname.lastname@example.org or at (317) 432-4306.
Wheat is a long-term area resident and plans to stay here. "I've lived in Broad Ripple since 1997 and seen it change quite a bit. Throughout the 90s, I was in several bands - Bangkok Rooster, Sam I Am, Moon, and Solving For X to name a few - that played around here. That was an exciting time for music in Broad Ripple," says Wheat. "I really miss the Patio and the other venues. But I guess as long as we have the Vogue, Broad Ripple will always have a music scene to me. In a way, I want Village Recording to help bring back some of that vibe."