Abbey Road studios not for sale, owner says
- EMI, the music label that owns the studios, says it’s in talks to revitalize them
- Composer Andrew Lloyd Webber had expressed interest in buying studios
- The Beatles made the studios famous with the album “Abbey Road”
- Much of the best-known British music of the 20th century was recorded here
London, England (CNN) – The iconic Abbey Road music studios made famous by the Beatles are not for sale, the music label that owns them said on Sunday, after days of speculation.
It is looking for a partner to help pay for the upgrades, according to Terra Firma, which controls EMI, which owns the recording studios.
“EMI confirms that it is holding preliminary discussions for the revitalization of Abbey Road with interested and appropriate third parties,” Terra Firma said.
But that doesn’t mean the studios are for sale, he added.
“In mid-2009 we received an offer to buy Abbey Road for over £30m (currently around $46m) but this was rejected as we believe Abbey Road should remain the property of EMI,” the music company said. in a report.
The studios became world famous when The Beatles were photographed crossing the road for the cover of their ‘Abbey Road’ album.
But it’s not only where the Beatles recorded “All You Need is Love” and many other songs, but also where much of the best-known British music of the 20th century was written.
Rock stars Pink Floyd and Cliff Richard, composer Sir Edward Elgar and the soundtracks of the films “Star Wars” and “Harry Potter” were recorded there.
English Heritage, a cultural institution, is considering designating the studios as a site of national historic significance, Terra Firma said. This would give him protected status.
“EMI … supports such a listing as an appropriate way to protect our world-renowned musical heritage site,” the company said on Sunday.
Terra Firma bought EMI in 2007.
Andrew Lloyd Webber, the composer of ‘Phantom of the Opera’ and ‘Cats’ and one of Britain’s richest men, is ‘very interested’ in buying the studios, a representative said on Friday.
“He first recorded there in 1967 with Tim Rice. Andrew has since recorded most of his musicals there,” rep Jenni Pain said.
“He thinks it’s vital the studios are saved for the future of the UK music industry. Abbey Road has such good facilities, with three great recording studios, and Andrew probably brought more musicians to record there than anyone else, because it has the ability to record great orchestral productions.”
CNN’s Per Nyberg and Morgan Neill contributed to this report.