The future of music

15 Best Recording Studios in Nashville

July 21, 2023
recording studios in nashville

Nashville is a metropolis whose modern reputation and storied, spirited history precedes it.

It is a satellite for wandering hearts, musical souls, and Grand Ol’ Opry aspirants.

Nashville has no close competitors and comfortably holds the throne when it comes to Americana, country, and bluegrass.

But fear not, all you alternative underground warriors – the Nashville of today is a mecca for indie adventurism, eclectic genre-blending, and rewarding individualism.

Undercurrents of electronic, garage rock, and minimalist folk round out the diverse offerings of the city. 

Nashville contains multitudes, after all, and by seeking out a local recording studio, you’ll be in the company of a quirky, prolific, and trenchant cast of characters.

If you want to tap into the fertile energy, buzzy urbanity, and creative dimensionality of Nashville for your debut recording, head to Tennessee with no detours. 

Enjoy our list of the best Nashville recording studios!

1. Blackbird Studio

Blackbird Studio

With nine studios and an audio academy to boot, Blackbird is a newcomer with a powerful vision and a glittering A-list clientele.

Their arresting sculptural interiors have created a stir online and contribute to the luxe, bespoke atmosphere of Blackbird.

They have 65 drum kits and the largest collection of vintage microphones – in the world.

Owned by country star Martina McBride and her husband, sound engineer John McBride, Blackbird has seen the likes of Lady Antebellum, The Killers, REM, Avicii, Evanescence, Alicia Keys, and Alan Jackson.

Their diverse experience with radio-friendly fare across an array of genres makes them a sturdy choice for artists who don’t subscribe to the Nashville norm.

Contact them directly for rates.

2. Ocean Way Nashville Studio

Ocean Way Nashville Studio

Located in a jaw-dropping century-old Gothic revival church, Ocean Way is an aesthetic, spiritual, historical, and musical experience all in one go.

The stone facade, soaring interiors, and 30-foot tall ceilings offer exceptional acoustic resonance, perfect for intricate instrumentals and orchestral arrangements.

If the grandeur and sheer size of Studio A are too overwhelming for you, you can pop over to Studio B for a more intimate mixing, tracking, and overdubbing experience.  

In addition to their Neve VRP 96 input console, they have an inviting lounge area with a billiards table and an outdoor patio with a million-dollar view of Music Row.

The sheer heritage and majesty of the building should sell you, but if it doesn’t, their clientele might: Willie Nelson, Paul Simon, Matchbox 20, and Sheryl Crow.

Contact them directly for rates.

3. Gnome Recording Studios

Gnome Recording Studios

An energetic and innovative place to hone and cultivate your own signature sound, Gnome is a forward-thinking, self-assured space with a range of experts who will knock your socks off.

The design is a lush blend of contemporary minimalism and earthy textures, with exposed brick and elegant wood fixtures across Studio A and B.

Their live room has 12-foot ceilings, and they offer an array of world-class equipment from leading names like Yamaha, ProTools, and Izotope. 

They cater to independent and indie artists across the sonic spectrum, like Capital Kings and Evan Craft, so whether you take a fresh, eclectic approach or a folksy bluegrass approach, Gnome will elevate your natural-born talent.

A full day in Studio A will cost $450, while a full day at Studio B will cost you $225.

5. Sound Emporium Studios

Sound Emporium Studios

A Nashville studio with a storied legacy, Sound Emporium opened its doors in 1964 when “Cowboy Jack” Clement moved to town, with years of experience working with the likes of Johhny Cash and Jerry Lee Lewis under his belt. 

Sound Emporium was the studio of choice for the original music of the hit show “Nashville” and has been patronized by country and pop stars alike: Cyndi Lauper, Keith Urban, Alabama Shakes, Cole Swindell, and Willie Nelson.

The spacious studios have a buoyant, uplifting ambiance and are packed to the treated wooden rafters with vintage and modern instruments and eclectic Persian rugs. 

Their meticulously-designed drum room and fiddle room are the stuff of Country music lore.

Contact them for rates.

6. Beaird Music Group

Beaird Music Group

Voted one of the best studios by readers of Nashville rag “Music Row,” Beaird is a full-suite hub located in the heart of the city.

Beaird is at the center of the country music action, and they have a particular knack for the crowd-pleasing, radio-friendly fare that has defined the genre as of late.

Think Luke Bryan, Morgan Wade, Tim McGraw, Joey + Rory, Kix Brooks, and Lady Antebellum.

They have three world-class studios, cozy and welcoming control rooms, lounge areas, and a full suite of ProTools equipment 

A premier demo with promotion is $725, and a premier mastering for one song is $875.

7. Sundog Recording Studio

Sundog Recording Studio

A delightfully cluttered musician’s mecca for recording, mastering, and mixing, Sundog is untamed, laidback, and delightfully unpretentious. 

Their cozy rooms are packed to the hilt with electric guitars, drum kits, and musical ephemera.

They have a comprehensive collection of digital and analog tools and an iconic Trident 80B, and tube saturation of the peerless 1959 Vintage Rube console. 

Sundog welcomes rock and country heavyweights, and they also offer supportive and uplifting services and mentorship for newer acts. 

Cage The Elephant, Sheryl Crow, Juliette Lewis, The Black Crows, and Luke Power have all hit up Sundog for their musical needs. 

Contact them directly for rates.

8. Parlor Productions

Parlor Productions

Founded at the turn of the century, Parlor has an impressive track record and can hold its own with any of the old-timers. 

The interiors are elegant, welcoming, and upmarket and are owned by songwriting and music-producing couple Robin Ruddy (a Grammy winner) and Larry Sheridan, who work tirelessly to create a boutique experience.

With a Trident 80 C console and a curated list of world-class gear, Parlor has the customized ambiance of a small studio but the tech of a big-league player.

They offer personalized mentorship and use their experience working with country stars like Vince Gill and Rascal Flatts to help guide you and plan your own creative trajectory.

Contact them for rates.

9. The Sound Kitchen Recording Studios

The Sound Kitchen Recording Studios

Opened in 1994, Sound Kitchen has capitalized on the growing popularity of Nashville to carve out a niche for itself as an unfussy and trustworthy one-stop shop for radio heavyweights and stadium-fillers.

With a range of vintage and digital equipment in their 19,000 square feet of space, they do their best work with country, pop, R&B, and semi-alternative rock.

Elton John, Carrie Underwood, Dolly Parton, Katy Perry, Taylor Swift, and Keith Urban have all made a musical meal or two at the ol’ Sound Kitchen.

They have a wide variety of studio rooms, with playful names like the Big Boy Studio and the Plug and Play Cafe.

Contact them for rates.

10. House Of David Recording Studios

15 Best Recording Studios in Nashville 1

Every legend worth their stripes has been recorded at the House of David, which launched back in the wild days of 1974. 

David Briggs, the studio’s namesake, has worked with Dolly Parton, Elvis Presley, Willie Nelson, B.B. King, and Joe Cocker.

Covering 4,000 square feet of recording space in two beautiful adjacent residential buildings, they are renowned in the city for offering the best setup for live recordings and for their extensive range of tech and equipment.

Located in the Music Row neighborhood, they are luminaries in their class and are well-reputed for their incisive professionalism and authoritative command of the industry.

Contact them directly for rates. 

11. Omnisound Studios

Omnisound Studios

Omnisound had the impressive privilege of being awarded Nashville’s Top Music Recording Studio in 2015, and country and pop mainstays like Faith Hill, Jewel, and Blake Shelton have all graced their halls.

They have three studios of different sizes, and they have a complete Pro Tools HD system and a Studer 2-inch tape machine, a selection of analog treasures, and an extensive array of plug-ins for the tech heads.

Despite their prestigious reputation, they still make time to mentor and champion newbies and independent artists and bands, and they pride themselves on approachable and knowledgeable staff who seek to understand and support rather than intimidate. 

Contact them directly for rates.

12. Black River Entertainment – Sound Stage Studio

Black River Entertainment - Sound Stage Studio

If Alan Jackson, George Strait, Jimmy Buffett, Waylon Jennings, and Miranda Lambert trusted Sound Stage, well, you can put money on their outsized expertise and their legendary prestige. 

They have had over 500 singles to their name in just 40 years and are one of the preeminent studios carrying on the tradition of the quintessential Nashville sound.

Ranging in size from grand to intimate, there is a recording room for every taste and a suite of world-class tech and pre-amps outfitted in each, so compromising on quality is never a concern.

The studio has been open for half a century and retains much of the luminous heritage and sophisticated nostalgic patina of the good ol’ days. 

Contact them directly for rates.

13. The Rukkus Room

The Rukkus Room

A charming name for a charismatic space, Rukkus was founded in 2004 and stands apart for its futuristic obsession with the latest tech.

You can have it all and a slice of pie at Rukkus, with five isolation booths, various studios, a piano room, and a full suite of mastering, production, and recording services. 

With dark wood interiors and alluring mood lighting, Rukkus has a grown-up, minimalist atmosphere perfect for honing in on your inner luminary.

Some of modern country’s biggest names record at Rukkus, like Luke Bryan, Cole Swindell, Blake Shelton, Kip Moore, Florida Georgia Line, and Chase Rice.

Contact them directly for rates.

14. Columbia Studio A/Quonset Hut

Columbia Studio A/Quonset Hut

One of the early fixtures on the now legendary Music Row, Columbia Studio A was founded back in the heady early days of commercial country, the swinging fifties.

Celebrated as being one of the original purveyors of the Nashville sound, the studio is responsible for many of the conventions and tropes we’ve come to associate with country music.

You live under a rock if you don’t know the work of their formidable clientele: Bob Dylan, Patsy Cline, and Johnny Cash, for starters.

It is currently used exclusively by Belmont University’s Curb College of Entertainment and Music Business and houses classrooms, a learning and development lab, and a recording studio. 

You can contact the University for a tour of the studio.

15. Press Play Studios Nashville

Press Play Studios Nashville

It does what it says on the label at Press Play, where they allow you to record and create 24 hours a day in a laidback and friendly space that promotes the Southern sound with Southern flair, charm, and hospitality. 

With neon lighting, flashy posters and wall art, and a series of intimate rooms, Press Play is the ideal place for newcomers or indie artists who prioritize experimentation and originality over history and tradition.

Press Play is ideal for pop, rock, hip-hop, and R&B artists, and they also offer promotional, photo services, and video recording.

You can sign up for a membership for deals and special prices – contact them for more.

Best Recording Studios in Nashville – Final Thoughts

Want to join the big leagues and get your name on the marque of the Grand Ol’ Opry?

No better place to start than the city that has launched a thousand stars.

And there’s no better time than now.

The clock’s ticking – Nashville’s best recording studios are calling.

You may also like: Best Recording Studios in Seattle

Will Fenton

Will, the founder of MIDDER, is a multifaceted individual with a deep passion for music and personal finance. As a self-proclaimed music and personal finance geek, he has a keen eye for futuristic technologies, especially those that empower creators and the public.

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