Spirit Sessions: The Stone Roses

Craig Gamblen

From double platinum albums and arena shows to sell-out singles and dedicated documentaries, The Stone Roses have come a long way since their demo days.

The Stone Roses recorded their first demo in Spirit Studios during an overnight session on the newly installed Brennel eight-track machine.

But this was the 80s, after all. It was rock ‘n roll and The Stone Roses were a breakthrough in more ways than one. All fired up to record a couple of tracks, The Stone Roses ‘borrowed’ the keys from the cleaner and invited themselves into the studios to record four songs.

Following the poor attempt of a break-in, Reni and Squire slapped a bit of paint on the walls in the live room, locked the Secretary out of the studios, and set to work on their demo. In true Roses-style, they weren’t going anywhere until they had a hit on their hands.

Despite the crackly faders, the touch-and-go mics, the temperamental wiring and the hand-dryer which triggered the 8-track machine, The Stone Roses recorded their first demo tape; the tape which catapulted them into the Manchester music scene, and later up the UK charts.

In 1987, The Stone Roses were made in Spirit Studios.

But, it didn’t just stop there. The Stone Roses were only the first of many to get their start in Spirit Studios. Nestled underground on Tariff Street in Manchester’s famous Northern Quarter, Spirit Studios became home to bands from the North West, many of which became household names; 808 State, The Smiths, Simply Red and the Happy Mondays, helping to produce some the best of British music.