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Create Your Own Taylor Swift, Long Pond Studio for Less Than £900

Create your own Taylor Swift Long Pond studio for under £900
Create your own Taylor Swift Long Pond studio for under £900

Create Your Own Taylor Swift, Long Pond Studio for Less Than £900

She kept us entertained during quarantine with the release of Folklore, but what's the secret to Taylor Swift's Long Pond Studio sound? We've picked apart the Disney movie to bring you the equipment you can use to recreate those bluesy folk tones.

Taylor Swift Long Pond Studio Guide
By | Published 26.07.21

The Queen of Country and Pop has delivered some seriously diverse music in her career, but there's simply no mistaking the powerful roots of her album, Folklore.

Released a year ago today on 24th July 2020, we're celebrating the album's birthday by bringing the Long Pond Studio to your home.

Taylor Swift has inspired many to pick up a guitar and write their own songs, so we've listed all the equipment you'll need to build your own Long Pond studio. Best of all, the full list comes to less than £900!

There's also a recommendation for an acoustic guitar that is very close to the ones Taylor uses.

We recently had York-based musician Francesca Lorico visit the Gear4music studio to put our gear selection through its paces. Watch more here…

Vocal microphone

Golden Age Project TC1

Here's our inside tip. For the real-deal studio microphone that Taylor uses to capture her emotive vocals, you'd be looking at spending around £9000 on the Telefunken U-47.

However, for a fraction of the price, the Golden Age Project TC1 gives you all the same vintage functionality needed.

The TC1's main function, which replicates the Telefunken, is the choice of cardioid or omnidirectional polar patterns. This means you can choose between capturing isolated vocals or some ambient sound too, depending on the environment you're setting up in.

As well as feel and sound, the TC1 offers the same classic look as the U-47. You'll also get a spider-type shock mount which is the same style as the one at the long pond studio.

Find out more | Golden Age Project TC1

See more | Golden Age Project Microphones

Guitar microphone

AKG C214 Large Diaphragm Microphone

It's important to get this one right. As Taylor is such an expressive guitar player, the most important thing you want the guitar mic to do is capture authenticity and detail. The AKG C214 does exactly this.

With a high-quality, one-inch capsule, cardioid polar pattern, and high-end components you'll have optimal accuracy and audio fidelity. In short, this means all the character from your acoustic guitar is highlighted.

Plus, you can play as passionately as Taylor does, because loud volume won't distort thanks to the switchable 20dB attenuation pad.

Find out more | AKG C214 Large Diaphragm Microphone

See more | AKG microphones


Shure SRH440 Professional Headphones

Throughout the Long Pond sessions, Taylor swaps between two sets of studio headphones - one of which is the Shure SRH840. Whenever Taylor isn't using them, you'll see either Aaron Dessner or Jack Antonoff (her co-writers) wearing a set.

To fit inside our £900 budget, you can get the same Shure-brand quality from the more affordable Shure SRH440, which gives you the clear audio you'll need.

You'll get an enhanced frequency response that delivers outstanding sound, while the cushioned circumaural design means you can play a complete session in comfort.

What's more, the ear cups also reduce background noise so you can immerse yourself with vocals and guitar in isolation.

Find out more | Shure SRH440 Professional Headphones

See more | Shure headphones

Audio Interface

SSL 2 2-Channel USB Audio Interface

Audio interfaces act as the bridge between your computer and other studio gear. They allow you to connect all your gear and turn your computer into a recording studio with the right music software.

The key to choosing an audio interface is finding one that will help replicate the distinct character of the long pond sessions. The SSL 2 2-Channel USB has the perfect features to make sure you do just that.

As well as dedicated inputs for your two mics and headphones, this interface comes with a “Legacy 4K” switch. When triggered, this feature adds twinkling high-end and vintage saturation based on flagship console preamps from Solid State Logic. The result is a classic, inspiring tone that's full of life.

The SSL 2 comes with an SSL production pack including plugins, DAWs, samples, loops and virtual instruments. So, you can tweak and experiment like a mad woman until you sound perfect.

Find out more | SSL 2 2-Channel USB Audio Interface

See more | Audio Interfaces

Acoustic guitar

Fender FA-235E Concert Electro Acoustic

The key to the long pond studio sessions is vintage. The main guitars that are used in the documentary are modified versions of a 1959 Silvertone 604 and a mid ‘60s Kay K3500.

As explained by Aaron Dessner (when speaking with Taylor about composing Invisible String), each guitar has been renovated so that the bridge deadens the strings for an incredibly unique tone. Sadly, this means you can't purchase the exact models, but we've found the next best thing.

To get the Long Pond guitar sound, the first things that come to mind are vintage style and body shape. With the Fender FA-235E, you get both. It's not all about the style though. You'll also get substance thanks to a mahogany body and flame maple top that both help the guitar pack a real punch.

Fingerpicking delicate melodies like Taylor's track “the 1” and strumming the sweet chords in songs like “seven” will come naturally with this electro-acoustic. An Indian Laurel fretboard and bridge help keep your tone grounded with rich undertones, perfect for reaching the depths of Taylor's more bluesy songs.

Find out more | Fender FA-235E Concert Electro Acoustic

You should also check out...

If you're looking for another Taylor Swift style acoustic to add to your collection, then these Taylor Baby signature models are perfect.

Shop now | Taylor Swift Baby Taylor TS-BTE Travel Electro Acoustic

Shop now | Taylor Swift Baby Taylor TS-BT Travel Acoustic Guitar

You'll also need a strap to keep your instrument attached to you at all times.

Shop now | Taylor Guitars Taylor Swift Signature Guitar Strap, Brown

Find out more

Shop now | Home Recording

Read more | Build A Home Recording Studio

Read more | Steal The Sound: Maisie Peters

Francesca Lorico

Francesca Lorico is a talented singer songwriter based in York, UK. She also has a lot of experience in professional audio. Francesca recently visited our studio to help us demonstrate the Taylor Swift Long Pond studio setup with her own original song.

Go check her out online!

Instagram - @Francesca.mp3

Website - Francesca Lorico

Francesca Lorico - Musician, Singer Songwriter

Posted on 24 Jul 2021 12:22 to category : Gear4music

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