Mad For It – Astar Studios in Manchester


Since Astar Studios opened 16 years ago, the Manchester recording studio has been lucky to host some of Manchester’s finest musicians. Astar owner Andy Ross is not only a Mercury Prize nominated Producer, but also an experienced performer who has toured and recorded with numerous Manchester music icons including ‘The Stone Roses’ legendary frontman Ian Brown, who inspired the 90s music era and is credited by Noel Gallagher as influencing the birth of Oasis.

In 2014 Andy was commissioned to co-produce a recording of The Style Council’s ‘The Paris Match’ by Manchester singer Kristyna Myles, with the band’s founder member and drummer Steve White, whose credits include Paul Weller, The Who, Ian Dury, Jon Lord and Oasis.

Steve was just 17 when he performed with The Style Council at Live Aid in 1985 and he was back playing with ‘The Who’ for Live 8 in 2005. His recent projects have included ‘The Family Silver’ and ‘Hague and White’. Click here to watch Steve’s testimonial to Astar Studios. Andy Ross said, “Working with Steve was an absolute pleasure. A one take wonder, who managed to self-create one of the best drum sounds I have ever heard.”

Manchester Bass Player Neil Fairclough is a regular friend of AstarStudios. Neil was working as a session player for Andy for many years before he got asked to join Queen and Adam Lambert. Neil has since travelled all over the world and continues to do so. Andy Ross said, “Working with Neil is such a creative process. Even though I may have existing ideas, I always like to give Neil the opportunity to give as much input as possible. The phrases he comes up with are truly special and he is a real perfectionist when it comes to the bass and drums locking in together which is vital to get a tight and solid foundation to a recording.” You can hear Neil’s testimonial to the studio here.

Manchester Rap Artist Geko was signed when he was just 13 years old and continues to release new music, amassing millions of followers listening to his music on YouTube. Andy Ross said, “Working with Geko was an interesting experience. He would literally walk into the live room and free style to a beat. His awesome talent was clear to see.

Co-founder of Joy Division and New Order, Peter Hook has also recorded at Astar Studios. Hooky often used the bass as a lead instrument, playing melodies on the high strings with a signature heavy chorus effect. In New Order, he would do this, leaving the actual basslines to keyboards or sequencers. Andy Ross described Hooky as “A great guy, generous musician and genuine person to be around.”

Visit Astar Studios testimonial page to hear from some of Europe’s finest musicians At Astar Studios we are always looking to work with the next great artist or band to come out of Manchester. You can call us on 0161 280 0908 or email [email protected].