On the record: Recording studio opens in Winter Park
A new Class-A destination recording studio opened up in downtown Winter Park this week, offering a state-of-the-art live room, gear and mountain inspiration.
The studio, Eagle Wind Sound, is run by local producer and recording artist, PJ Olsson, and his partner, Tony Rosacci.
On top of the high-end equipment and recording space, Olsson wants the studio and location in Winter Park to be an inspiration to artists that use it.
“We want our artists to come in and be inspired by the real reasons we all make music,” said Olsson. “It’s something that I have brought into my focus of believing that music is the most important language on our planet. I don’t partake in anything that’s not a high energy, quality project or song. And if we have an artist that comes in here that might not have that I’m going to give it to them.”
Olsson grew up in rural Michigan, where he traveled around to schools and retirement communities preforming with his family’s band. His father was an orchestra conductor and the director of arts and humanities at Michigan Technological University, and his mother was also a singer, meaning Olsson had high expectations as a musician from a very young age.
“I grew up embraced by creativity all around,” said Olsson. “I was taught to be a daydreamer and a creative rebel. Along the way with creative musician parents there was no second guessing what practice, follow through and discipline was.”
At 17 years old, Olsson signed his first record deal with a German recording company, but the company folded before the album could be released. He decided to move to Los Angeles to pursue a career in music, where he found success almost immediately.
Within four days of arriving he was sitting in a room with Alicia Winfield, a producer who had just finished working with Whitney Houston. Too young and inexperienced to sign a with a major label, Olsson began playing bars in the area and making a name for himself with his avant-garde, trip hop style tunes.
“Dad always found things like the Beatles or Led Zeppelin to have street in them,” said Olsson. “He said I already knew my theory, and that I needed to get to know the world and know the people.”
Olsson moved to Chicago where he started attracting crowds of several hundred at the Voodoo Beef Bar where he played. On top of music he would transform the stage into his living room, taking turns producing and writing songs in front of the audience, watching television and singing. After a while he signed a record deal, began touring and released his first album, Words for Living.
Olsson later came to Colorado, where he felt he could give his children a better upbringing, but his musical career was far from over. He got a call from Alan Parsons, and engineered and mixed Parsons’ latest album, A Valid Path, before signing on as the lead singer of the Alan Parsons Live Project. He still tours with the band today.
“Being on stage with Parsons really opened up a lot of doors creatively and professionally,” said Olsson. “Now at 48 years old, I have specific things that I want to do creatively for my career.”
One of those things was opening a studio. Two years ago Olsson met Tony Rosacci, and helped him produce his own record, Toning the Vibe. The two became friends, and went to work developing a business plan for Eagle Wind Sound with their sons, Remi and Dominic, and Rick “Rock” Stone.
Olsson said they have already begun selling recording time in the studio, and that he expects the studio to bring in artists from all over the country, as well as more local talents.
“The only thing we can be accused of is doing everything right with this place,” he said. “We both believe in music to just a crazy place. Not only our music, but also our belief in music for everybody. It speaks for so many and we want to be involved in that and we want to bring it here. And have artists from all over the world come and be inspired by our destination.”
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