R/E/P > Terry Manning

Ghosts of Compass Point

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Stories abound from Compass Point Studios "old timers" about strange happenings around this place.  People such as Chris Frantz and Tina Weymouth (of Talking Heads and Tom Tom Club) Steve Stanley, Wally Baderou, Chris Blackwell, Sue Palmer, and others have related some odd things to me.  I was told, for instance, that soon after the chicken-blood-dripping incident, and while Lee Perry was still here, that people would sit on the balconies of the apartments behind the studio (and also higher up the hill) at night, and look down upon strange glowing globes of light dancing around the studio and adjacent property.  Also, there were many tales of sightings of Bob Marley inside the studio hallways and rooms, starting soon after Marley's untimely death.  There have even been those who claimed Marley sightings since I came here in '92.  Some people would not even stay alone in the studio building at night.

Now, I spend a lot of time in this place, and very, very often I am here all by myself, working late into the night.  I have never really believed in ghosts (nor disbelieved), and I have never been afraid while alone here at night.  And once, about two years ago, I THOUGHT I saw someone, out of the corner of my eye, walking down the hallway when the building was supposedly empty.  But if they were there, they walked right on through a concrete wall into the studio room...

...but just this past week, I got another, more definite taste of it all.

I was working in our Studio A (the bigger room, closest to the front, with the Neve, for those who are familiar with the facility), and it was about 12:30-1:00 am.  I always keep the control room doors open when I'm here alone, just so I can get a sense of what, if anything, is going on in the building, (sometimes one of our engineers or assiatants will pop by, and I like to know when someone else comes in).

So there I was, listening intently to some recent mixes, preparing them for release.  Control room door is open.  The song ends.  I hear singing in the hallway, just outside the control room door.  I think Alex or Osie must have come by (although neither is a singer at all, and this was some good singing).  The singing goes on, pretty loudly, for about 35-45 seconds.  I walk into the hallway to see who it is.  Naturally, no one is there.  I call out.  No one answers.  I search the entire building (now holding a cricket bat in my hands).  No one.  Anywhere.

I know what singing sounds like.  I know how to judge the distance of a singer by hearing the sounds, both direct, and reflected.  I make my living listening to people singing.  I sing myself.  I know the difference in singing and wind noise, singing and automobile noise, singing and airplane noise, singing and any kind of noise.  This was definitely singing.  Not really words, but consonant and vowel sounds, and a definite melody.  But absolutely no one was in the building.  Weather was fine, and quiet.  No howling wind or anything like that.  There was absolutely no doubt in my mind what I had heard.

But I must say that there was nothing threatening or evil feeling in this; things didn't suddenly "get scary."  I didn't run out of the front door yelling "I'll never go in there again at night."  The singing just stopped, and things went back to normal.

But I sure wish I had been recording with an open mic that night!

Curve Dominant:
That was me, Terry.

I was vacationing in the Bahamas, and thought I would poke in for a chat.

I always sing to myself outloud. I saw you were busy, and so I ducked away.

Sorry if I spooked you.


Thanks for the great April 1st story Terry  

Now, if it is for real:  My studio is in a pre-war building in a very old area of town, and I can relate.  There have been nights working alone when I felt "compeled" to run out the front door due to aborations.  But I feel they are freindly ghosts just passing through.  Several others have reported "voices" and "footsteps"  but no singing...

More likely some olde long dead cleaning woman, than Bob Marley over at my place though!

Hey thats funny - another 'haunted' studio is supposed to be Mushroom Studios in Vancouver....

Sometimes late at night my mind used to play tricks on me over at Darryl Neudorf's  old Miller Block studio (RIP) next to Save on Meats on Hastings St...

I did quite a lot of work there '94-'97...

But then again, there was often some crazy stuff going on downstairs with brothels, Chinese triads, druggies and a boozecan, in operation at various times..so maybe some sounds voyaged up..
When the brothel was in full swing sometimes we could hear the girls getting slapped aroud, pretty ugly goings on...

The police finally raided the place one day, came into the studio & put guns to everyone's heads.. I heard it took a lot of persuading with the commanding officer that the studio had nothing to do with the activities downstairs..


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