Cotton Hill Studios
Albany, New York
Cotton Hill Studios first opened its doors in Albany, New York more than 25 years ago. The facility is something of a beacon of longevity, attributing its success mainly to a flexible studio design, an extremely diverse set of capabilities and a loyal client base. Recently, Cotton Hill announced the arrival of producer Nathaniel Reichman — an audio producer from New York City with extensive audio experience in television, films and classical music. He has taken residency in an upstairs suite, formerly Cotton Hill’s video editing room.
Design and acoustics
Rettig and company says that WSDG principal and interior designer Beth Walters had an important, delicate touch in helping establish the southwestern-flavored flourishes in the studio: “I am really into southwestern art,” says Rettig. “Beth recommended some beautiful southwestern reds and other colors that reflect this style. It is just beautiful and our clients love it.”
Cotton Hill consists of plenty of office space in the front, with a very large control room and a live room featuring variable acoustics in the rear. There is also a smaller B room with an adjacent vocal booth. Rettig says that one of the best things about having a large control room is being able to comfortably accommodate a variety of clients: “A lot of the sessions we do are corporate or advertising sessions, where you might have a couple creative directors from an agency, an account executive, a couple of clients and voice talent. So there might be 8-10 people at a given session and we want to make sure they all feel at home.”
As for equipment, Cotton Hill’s judicious purchases include a Trident 80C 32x24 console (which was completely refurbished in 2006), a Pro Tools HD3 system, Genelec 1030A monitors and many other items including an incredible selection of outboard — Neve 1073 and DW Fearn preamplifiers, UREI, Summit Audio and Drawmer compressors and a host of microphones from Neumann, Sennheiser and AKG. Upstairs, Nat likes to keep things simple and focused: “Now it is all about portability and I am completely in the box,” he says.