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June Audio Recording Studios - A Wes Lachot studio in Provo, Utah
Old 30th September 2016
Gear Addict
juneaudio's Avatar
June Audio Recording Studios - A Wes Lachot studio in Provo, Utah

Hello all, starting a thread here for our new studio. The story of this build is long and winding, but first I just needed to get this thread started as I am lucky enough to be on Matt Boudreau's Working Class Audio Podcast and I need the link to be active!
If you are interested in following along subscribe to this thread.
If you want to check out our website, and see where we are coming from you can find some info here.

Last edited by juneaudio; 3rd October 2016 at 07:06 AM..
Old 3rd October 2016
Looking forward to watching this one!
Old 4th October 2016
Subscribed with popcorn ready
Old 4th October 2016
Lives for gear
Well, pics of the old one were fabulous, so then I went through the pics of the new project and that took the buzz up more! Then I topped it all off by reading your extensive gear list.

Since I love the Wes Lachot stuff, I can't wait to see/read more!
Best of luck to you!
Old 27th July 2018
Gear Addict
juneaudio's Avatar
It's hard for me to even explain why getting this project off the ground has been so difficult, but I'm happy to report that work began yesterday. It will be a bit slow going at first as we do some demolition, but I will start to get photos up soon and go through our story, whether you like it or not!
Old 27th July 2018
So stoked. Good to hear it’s moving forward!
Old 3rd August 2018
Gear Addict
juneaudio's Avatar
got some elevations and a floor plan to share!
Attached Thumbnails
June Audio Recording Studios - A Wes Lachot studio in Provo, Utah-elevations-internet.jpg  
Attached Files
File Type: pdf floor plan for internet.pdf (7.64 MB, 253 views)
Old 4th August 2018
Gear Maniac
Dizzi45Z's Avatar

It looks amazing!!!
Old 4th August 2018
Lives for gear
Whoa! That looks seriously major! LOL
I'm looking forward to this!
Old 22nd August 2018
Gear Addict
juneaudio's Avatar
Hi all, it’s been a LONG time coming but I can finally start this build thread. I used to read these threads and wonder how on earth it could take so long to build a studio. Little did I know I’d be 7 years into my own project and still looking at 6 to 12 months to go. But build threads like this and this helped me so much I feel like I should return the favor and hopefully help someone else.

As a record of the long journey to where we are today this first entry is going to be long, very long. Feel free to skip ahead for current updates, but I want (need?) to document this for myself more than anything.

By way of introduction, I’m Scott Wiley, I own June Audio Recording Studios in Provo, Utah. I grew up in La Canada, California, a suburb of LA, went to USC and got a Bachelor of Science in Music Recording and have been recording music since my parents gave me a Fostex 4 track cassette machine in 8th grade.

After moving from California to Utah on a bit of a whim, I opened a small studio in a turn of the century home in downtown Provo. The studio grew so my wife and I managed to get an SBA loan and with it we renovated the house and improved the gear.

Here are some shots from 2000 after our grand re-opening:

It was pretty small, maybe 1600 sq feet, but it was nice, sounded good and we stayed busy.

In 2003 my wife and I decided to move back to LA and were able to sell the studio - the house, the equipment, the name June Audio, all of it.

I found good work in LA, and learned from some amazing engineers and producers, but eventually realized that the studio lifestyle in LA wasn’t going to work for me. After weighing options, we decided to move back to Utah.

At that point the June Audio equipment and name had been sold once again, and had been moved to a new location in Provo - a space designed by Karl Yancher as part of a larger film studio complex. Their B studio was available so I moved in there as a mix / overdub room, and rented out June Audio studio A as a client when I needed a larger space.

More changes happened and in 2010 I found myself moving into studio A, buying the same gear again and getting the name June Audio back.

Here are some shots of that incarnation of the studio:

Still just a one-studio operation, but this one was larger - around 2000 sq feet and quiet, clean balanced power, etc. We didn’t, however, own the building, so while we had a long-term lease, ultimately our fate wasn’t completely in our hands.

In December of 2011 our landlord decided to sell the building - the new owners, a pest control company, weren’t sure they wanted a recording studio in the middle of their building, so we started considering options. Since we still had 6 years left on our lease and our landlord wanted to make good on it, he proposed building us a new studio in another location so he could sell the building with no strings attached.

After a lot of deep diving on Gearslutz and I knew that if I had the choice I would love to work in a Wes Lachot designed space. We called Wes and he agreed to fly out to Utah to look at spaces and discuss what we would need. We had a great meeting, but within a few months the new buyers changed their tune and our lease was sold to them along with the building, so now rather than being a recording studio in the middle of a film studio, we were a recording studio in the middle of a pest control office.

We managed to stay very busy despite the fact that coming and going through the pest control offices was strange for us, strange for clients, and I’m sure strange for pest controllers.

Eventually, in need of more office space, our new landlords began to float the idea of us moving out. The truth was, however, that our lease was pretty sweet and it was hard to want to move, and overwhelming to figure out how to take on a commercial studio build on our own with no deep pockets behind it.

In November of 2014 the pest controllers got serious and offered us a buyout for our lease which was to end in August of 2018. Knowing a little bit about just how expensive a studio build can be, and realizing it was probably better to leave with some money than to ride out our lease, we signed papers, cashed the check and agreed to be out by August 2016.

So we set about trying to find a new location. We needed something free-standing (didn’t want to share walls with neighbors if possible), preferably with a large open space and high ceilings. Although they certainly offer the most bang for the buck, I was hoping not to end up in a roll-up door warehouse / industrial area. Nothing wrong there of course, but they tend to be on the outside of town and I love being close to restaurants, music venues, galleries, and shops so there is somewhere to walk to when a long session requires a break.

We looked everywhere and at everything, my favorite was a former tire store that had been sitting vacant for a few years. It had great access, great parking, good views and a large open area with 20’ clear ceilings. We made an offer but lost to another buyer.

Next up was a huge former auto dealership / auto garage built in the 1940’s. This space was far too big for what we needed, but we figured we could lease the extra space, and the location and vibe were great for our studio. It was, however, along the main street through town, which is loud and busy! In May 2015 we moved forward, made an offer which was accepted, contacted Wes and arranged for him to fly back to Provo to see the space and take measurements. At this point I had a key to the space and had spent plenty of time dreaming of all the possibilities and how great it was going to be. The day arrived, I headed to the building to meet Wes, fresh off his flight from North Carolina. I was ready to get going and start this design process and get things moving so we would have a new studio to land in when we had to move in late 2016.

(the auto dealership building)

Wes showed up, walked in the building, looked around for about 45 seconds and then told me there was no way this building would work, and we would spend every dollar of our budget just trying to get the road noise out of the building and have nothing left to finish the studio interior. This was a real blow, we had been down the road with realtors, deposits, etc and now we were back to square one, not to mention the fact that we had flown Wes out for 3 days and by 11am on the first day we had nothing left to do. It may sound harsh that Wes shut things down so quickly, but truthfully it’s exactly why we needed someone of his caliber, and exactly what we paid him for.

We spent the rest of the weekend looking around town at other possibilities, and Wes gave us a ton of information about what we should be looking for in a potential building.

(Wes and I meeting after the bad news about the auto dealership. I think the sugar packets on the table might be arranged to talk about monitor placement!)

In August of 2015 the tire shop we missed out on went back on the market after a failed closing and this time our offer was accepted. I was sure this was the best option so as you may have guessed, in September of 2015, out came Wes once again to see and measure the tire shop.

(the tire shop)

(the view from what would have been the lounge)

(measuring and notating with Wes)

With the clock started on our escrow period for the building we got to work meeting with contractors, having plans drawn, paying for appraisals and then phase 1 and phase 2 environmental reports. We were spending a lot of money and in many cases having to pay to expedite the process in order to make our deadlines. By the end of September 2015 we had our first set of plans from Wes. We would be building a 3 studio complex, an A and B room as well as a smaller production room that we would rent out on a monthly basis.

(Wes’s initial floor plan for the tire shop)

We met with banks. Many, many banks. I think to this day we have probably met with and even gone all the way through to an approval with 8 or 9 banks. If you’ve taken out a big SBA loan before, you know just how much work that is. Many nights were spent filling out applications and gathering financials for yet another application. Some approved us, some denied us, many were very confused by what we were attempting to do, and some just lost interest in something so complicated.

In January of 2016 I flew back east to visit some studios that Wes Lachot Design Group had designed.

(Manifold Recording Pittsboro, NC)

Nothing made me more confident in our choice to use Wes and his team than going in these great studios. I have worked in a lot of different places but I can honestly say I have never heard monitoring like I heard in these control rooms, they were just so incredible to listen in.

I also had the chance to meet Tony Brett and tour his shop - Brett Acoustics. I’m very excited to have him involved in our new space too.

(Brett Acoustics Durham, NC)

Due to all the work that needed to be done with plans and bids and loans we managed to get the seller to extend our escrow and closing was set for February 29, 2016. Wes and his team continued to refine plans, we continued to gather bids and as commercial development newbies we got ripped off by one contractor to the tune of $10k! We persisted and things were getting closer to closing and the plan was coming together.

Then, out of the blue, an unusual email. A real estate development company had been buying up property in the shopping center surrounding the tire store and wanted “our” space as well. At this point we were into that location nearly $100k between plans, inspections, environmental, deposits, etc etc, so we gave them a polite “thanks but no thanks” - we were moving forward. They asked for more meetings, and then more meetings, and in the end, with the help of a good friend brought in to negotiate, we assigned our purchase agreement and walked with a pretty serious sum of money - pretty great for never even owning the building. A couple days after signing over the purchase rights, Wes sent me the final plans for the studio in that space.

The tire shop has since been demolished which hurts my heart a little - I still think it would have been a great studio.

March 2016, we have some money in the bank, but only 5 months left on our lease and we are busy as ever with sessions. Clearly we won’t have a new studio built in time, so we begin looking for temporary locations we could use while we build. A friend let me know that our old location, the house downtown, was sitting vacant and could potentially be for sale again. The good news, the lot the house sits on is large and could fit a large studio (with some significant work), the bad news, the house was in pretty bad shape, no longer a studio, and not even a place where you’d want to bring a client.

After a little more investigation and measuring, we realized the lot was nearly the size of the old tire shop, and started thinking that maybe we could take Wes’s tire shop studio plans and make them fit behind the old house. We were really hoping to get some value out of them and not have to pay to redraw.

With my advanced graphic design skills, I made these layouts in microsoft excel to show the original site layout (above), and how Wes’s tire shop plans could fit in the same space (below).

Yes, that is a giant concrete box attached to the back of a classic revival turn of the century historic home. It’s fine. We can make it work. It’s an amazing location.

I contacted the current owner, did some negotiating and ended up buying the house, for the second time, and for very nearly double what we had bought it for 17 years earlier. It’s fine. Totally worth it. This area of town is growing and appreciating quickly.

We hired a local contractor to help us rehab the house, and a local architect to design a shell for the new studios.

Before photos of the house:

In July 2016 we took the studio offline, and began to pack up and move things. The house would serve as a home for our studio while we built the new spaces behind. We have quite a bit of gear, so moving was a pretty big ordeal and now we have two storage units full of things that won’t fit in the house.

Knowing the old space in the pest control building was to be demolished, we pretty much gutted it, saving everything we could from cabling, to track lighting, to light switches & controllers. Other local studio owners came in and took the engineered wood floors, stretched fabric, and insulation out of the walls.

While we waited for the house renovation to be completed, we set up gear in my garage to inventory cable and get everything wired up and working - hoping for a quick installation when the house was ready.

Some renovation shots of the house:

(Wes helped us with an acoustic design for the house. Here the RPG panels arrive.)

We started moving gear into the house in September and when the work was done our first session was for The Killers upcoming Christmas single. It was October 8, 2016 and it was very cold outside. Unfortunately somewhere along the way we forgot to have the gas turned on, and as it was the weekend, we had no heat, nor way to get the heat turned on. A quick trip to Home Depot for some small electric heaters and our first session was a success.

Here is how the house looks now:

We thought we would be in the house - our temporary home - for about a year. Although it’s a bit cozy and we miss so much of our great gear that’s sequestered in storage, it has thankfully been a very functional space. We love the location, clients love the vibe. So now, two years later, work has finally just begun on the new building. In that time we’ve met with even more banks, finally obtaining an SBA 504 loan with good terms from US Bank. We met with and received bids from many contractors - each one having to dig in and figure out the complexities of studio construction. We worked with the city to make whatever modifications/clarifications/compromises they asked for and obtained our construction permits. We got all the way through the process and decided it was too expensive, then went back to adjust the plans and have them re-bid, only to discover that in the time it took to go through the process again overall construction prices had gone up by almost exactly the same amount we’d saved. We finally deciding to go with Zadok Construction as GC. Harris Architecture here in Provo designed our new shell, and Suzanne Hall with Alice Lane Interior Design designed the common areas in the new space as well as the interior details of the house. We’ve assembled a great team and everyone is excited to see it actually happening now.

We’ve given up trying to predict or plan this project. The contractor says it could be 6 months. We’re preparing ourselves for double that.

It has been a long journey here, just look at all the locations that were possibilities:

And finally, for this post anyway, here is our soon to be floor plan:

And some future elevations:

If you’ve actually read this far, let me just say thanks for hanging in there. I promise not to be nearly so long winded in future posts - just felt the need to get this all down for the sake of documenting the journey. Planning and preparing for this construction project has been so all-consuming over the past number of years sometimes I forget that having it finished and open and working is actually the end goal. Here’s hoping I can keep this new studio running for longer than it took me to write this first post.

Last edited by juneaudio; 23rd August 2018 at 06:41 AM..
Old 22nd August 2018
What an awesome and inspiring journey - thanks so much for posting!
Old 22nd August 2018
Gear Addict

Wow... after reading about what you've already been through, I have no doubt that you'll be able to finish this project. I like your idea of a big, purpose-built "box" attached to the house. It'll let you have the house and studio together, with no compromises in the construction of the latter.
Old 22nd August 2018
Lives for gear
Wiggy Neve Slut's Avatar

All time build thread!! Simply amazing and well done and totally inspiring!
Old 22nd August 2018
Lives for gear
SRS's Avatar

Very impressive. Mostly... your dedication to getting your studio dream accomplished. I cannot even imagine the auxiliary drama other than what you already detailed. I look forward to seeing it continue to progress forward. And I thought 2 years was a long arduous path for my build. But then again, I did it all myself.
Old 23rd August 2018
Lives for gear
Well, that is inspiring! Holy cow! I'm gonna go back and read it again. LOL
Best of luck!
Old 23rd August 2018
Gear Addict
juneaudio's Avatar

Our property has the old house (current studio) up front, along the street, but sitting behind is (was) an old duplex. The duplex was in the way of the new studio, as is a small addition to the back of the house. (as of now the duplex is gone, but the addition remains, at least for a few more days.)

To get an overview of the layout watch this quick video:

First up, asbestos removal. If you are reading this you are likely a musician, or perhaps, even worse, a musician and an audio engineer / producer like me. Listen up, quit what you are doing right now and get into asbestos removal. I would be quite surprised to find another line of work that seemingly takes so little skill, but pays so well. Our asbestos removal cost $14k, and took, wait for it, one and a half days. Now, I know, they need special suits and fans and stuff (oddly, ours never had any special suits or fans), and you do have to take the materials to a special dump or something that is expensive, but honestly, $14k?!

(the addition on the old house, post asbestos removal)

Next, the driveway up front was taken out - we need to run new underground power lines, new water line and get fiber to the house and new building because now they come from the back of the house where things are going to get torn up.

The day before the duplex demolition we took the kids over and let them fulfill the dream they had been talking about for months - they got to beat on things with hammers / bats / axes, and spray paint anything they wanted.

On my way out of the studio that night a friend showed up. He and I had talked before about the fact that when he was born, his mom and dad brought him home from the hospital to one side of that duplex where they lived at the time. He asked if he could go have a look around and take some pictures and I told him to have at it and headed home.

The next morning I showed up and saw that the work on the duplex had already begun.

Strangely there was no heavy equipment around yet. I asked the superintendent how they got started but he told me they thought it was something we had done ourselves. Tire tracks were clear to see leading up to building, and it was clear someone was getting some speed. We were perplexed, and suddenly a cryptic comment he left on my studio instagram account made sense. The comment read "I may have taken liberties above and beyond what you were granting. If that adds labor to the demolition tomorrow send the bill my way." and it was from my friend / the former tenant. Not totally sure why, but he decided to have a bit of fun and drive his truck through part of the building. The next day he sent me this photo:

So I suppose we would have to say that this was really the beginning of the demolition. Incidentally, we found the missing Ford badge in the rubble pile.

The demo, at least thus far, has gone well.

The addition on the house was set to be taken down as well, but first the electrical must be moved. That is turning out to be a bigger problem than anticipated. The electricians dug the trench, got the new lines run as well as the new meter and panels, and the city came out and everything passed inspection. The next day Provo City Power showed up to hook us up and place the new transformer.

Unfortunately, when they were going to place the meter it became clear that the city was preparing us for single phase power, while the plans and all the work that had been done, as well as the other equipment which had been ordered were 3 phase power. Honestly, I really don't even know what that means, but its clear that it's not good and we are now in limbo as we try to figure out where someone screwed up and the best way forward. Needless to say this will cost both time and money. I'm smart enough to know that I should just go ahead and settle in for a good 12 more months of that!

Last edited by juneaudio; 10th September 2018 at 06:55 AM..
Old 30th August 2018
Here for the gear

I loved reading this. This studio is my fav
Old 31st August 2018
Gear Head

This is why gearslutz exists

Having been around for the entirety of this, but on the outside for most of it, let me just say THANK YOU for this post. I'm gonna enjoy following along. Best of luck over the next 6 years as you build out the back end of your studio
Old 2nd September 2018
Gear Addict
juneaudio's Avatar

Demolition continues as we work to sort out the electrical. At this point we will stick with three phase power. The impact / permit fees we will owe the city are significant, but, as much of the needed equipment has already been built, it is the cheapest way to go from here.

The trench has been backfilled, and you can see that we moved the condenser for the house a/c to the front yard, a lovely addition, but thankfully temporary, there just wasn't anywhere else to put it that wouldn't be in the way for now.

Most of the trees are now gone, but the addition to the house remained for a few more days while a plan was made for the electrical.

Finally the addition was torn off, although they left a small corner where the mast for the electrical comes into the house, once things get switched over that will be torn off.

Just a small tree is left to pull out and then the hole to fill and they should be able to start digging for footings.
Old 6th September 2018
Lives for gear
Joao B.'s Avatar

Awesome thread!

We are also documenting our studio build in this forum. After doing projects for one and a half locations before finding the right place, one year of planning after that and then 8 months of stoppage because of a soil problem, I can definitely relate to what you are going through!

Subscribing to this thread

Best of luck!
Old 6th September 2018
Gear Addict
Zargg's Avatar
Hi. Great thread, and good luck
All the best.
Old 6th September 2018
Deleted 6aa6ee2
I really want to buy the church next to you guys and turn it into a club called Church - that way all the BYU kids when asked what they did over the weekend can tell their Bishop they went to Church.

Didn't Royal Bliss just do some tracking with you? I thought I saw some pictures they had posted.
Old 10th September 2018
Gear Addict
juneaudio's Avatar
Yeah, Royal Bliss has been coming in a bit, expecting to see them back in a month or so. Great guys, really enjoying that.
Old 10th September 2018
Gear Addict
juneaudio's Avatar

Not much to report although work continues. Things are still being sorted out with the power, but we expect to have the power switched over this week and a new transformer being set right in the front yard. This transformer is for the house and the new addition, then within the house and the new studios there are additional transformers to isolate the power for the studios.

The hole in the back where the duplex was is being filled and compacted, and more concrete is being removed.

We met with our landscape design company, Planted Studio, and got to see their vision for the yard space. I think clients are going to really love it and it should provide a nice space to hang out during a long session.

This next week should see work starting on our new sewer line, water lines and hopefully some digging for footings.

Here is a time lapse of the work so far:

Old 22nd September 2018
Lives for gear
imloggedin's Avatar
May I ask how in gods name you have the money to do this, and everything you have done up to this point including your gear??????
Old 22nd September 2018
Gear Addict
juneaudio's Avatar
^^^It's a good question. The gear Ive been accumulating over a lot of years, some of this gear Ive had since high school. Lots and lots of scouring local classifieds and thrift shops to find gear and doing that for over 20 years, things add up.
As for the studio - do we have the money to do this out of pocket? not even remotely close. It took over one year but we managed to get a good loan. We lucked into a few situations, described in my endless initial post, that helped us bank some cash for a downpayment and renovations. We have a business with a good track record and longevity, we have great credit, Im pretty smart and my wife is a genius! Is this a great idea? Frankly, Im not totally sure, but I think we can make it work and I feel that we will be able to help our local music community make even better recordings with the new spot. We definitely aren't in this for the money, if you are on this site I can't imagine you are either!
I will say that this whole process has been more work than I ever could have imagined. One foot in front of the other, keep going and then hope for the best!
Old 24th September 2018
Gear Addict
juneaudio's Avatar

Lots of work done this week. We now have no concrete surrounding the house, no good way in or out, but we do have a new water line and a new sewer line, which we did not have for a few days this week. Asking clients to walk a block to the grocery store to use the bathroom was not my favorite, but everyone understands and has been easy going. We also had to postpone a few sessions this week while the compactor nearly shook the house down, and for about 7 hours on Thursday when the temporary power feed was knocked out.

The old overhead power service was removed and this last bit of the old addition was prepped to be removed.

Once the old steps and wall were removed it became easier to see what it will look like inside our new lobby once it is complete. The white door with the caution tape will be removed and stairs will lead down into the new lobby. Behind that door will be our kitchen and eating area.

As the concrete up front was removed the water line under the driveway broke, which led to us being without water for a few days until they could get the new line run.

The new water line was run where eventually our driveway will be again.

The old sewer line was clay and in pretty bad shape, so we had to put a new one in. Half of the street had to be shut down and trenching began. Eventually this trench would stretch across the entire front yard and down the side of the house to tie in and also lead to the new bathrooms that will be built.

We actually managed some cello overdubs this day, it was really a high point to ask a cello player to maneuver through this mess, and then on top of that tell her we had no water or bathroom.

I’m very grateful to our contractor and the excavation guys who put in a number of long days this week.

The week ended with the guys coming in on Saturday to dig the footings for the new building. I can’t wait to see some new construction.

Old 25th September 2018
Lives for gear
Owen L T's Avatar
An epic build - really enjoyed reading your journey (back) to this place, and looking forward to seeing this come together (the inside/home studio already look spectacular, again) ...
Old 25th September 2018
Lives for gear
andersmv's Avatar

What a trip! On the other hand, the house looks great with all the gear in there right now!
Old 8th October 2018
Gear Addict
juneaudio's Avatar

Things are beginning to cool down here, snow on top of the mountains, so the race is on to get some walls and a roof up.

Once the footings were dug we got to see the incredible foundation of the house. I’m sure its probably how all the older homes in the area were constructed, but it doesn’t inspire a lot of confidence to see the stacked river rock that holds things up. The plywood / boarded up window is the other side of this:

Eventually this will be open between the old house and the new space, the door to the left will go out to reception, the window will look down the hall between the studios.

The footings were formed, in the second photo you can see the copper wire which is bound to the footing rebar in multiple locations to create the Ufer ground.

Concrete showed up and the footings were poured quickly.

The rebar standing up out of the footings is for the stem wall which connects the footings to the above-ground walls. The forms for the stem wall took a couple days to arrive, but it was then formed and poured.

Now, with the forms off, it's getting a bit easier to see the spaces and how things will lay out.

This will be the new entrance to the studio. The two lower spots in the wall behind will be the doorways to a janitor closet and a new bathroom. The house wall on the right and the window will eventually be interior walls and the bolts and plates seen on top of the concrete toward the right will hold steel beams that will support the new roof.

Here is a look at how things will layout:

On Friday the trenches were backfilled and tomorrow we expect to see concrete block arrive and hopefully start going up.

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