Can I get away with recording a band in an abandoned building in SF?
February 13, 2007 11:10 PM   Subscribe

San Franciscans! How safe/legal/easy would it be to record a band in an abandoned building in your city?

I asked a band if they would like to make an album for my record label. They live in California, I'll be there for a weekend, I figured why not do something a little different? San Fran seems pretty open to this sort of thing. The band will most definitely be loud, but they don't have huge amps, which would mean easy in/easy out if need be. Will it work?
posted by Bappy Lorenzo to Grab Bag (6 answers total)
Sorry, Gavin Newsom is trying to "man up" a bit after his recent indiscretions, so he's recently enacted the death penalty for trespassing.

Eh, seriously, it's not going to be any different than any other city. Hard to find a place that's going to be "unsafe" in San Francisco, particularly with a bunch of guys with heavy equipment loitering about, so that leaves legal and easy. It's just as legal as any place else, which is to say, even abandoned buildings are owned by someone, so you'd be trespassing unless you got the owner's permission. Getting caught doing so is a function of noise level and nearby residential population.

If you want to go through official channels, I dunno... try contacting the city of South San Francisco, that area has a lot of empty warehouses and grungy industrial areas that they might have some info on.
posted by symphonik at 11:32 PM on February 13, 2007

Oh, and insert obligatory snark about calling it "San Fran" here. ;)

Invite some Mefites if you make it to a warehouse and want some music nerds. Invite some Farkers if you want someone to bring beer and make it a party. Good luck!
posted by symphonik at 11:36 PM on February 13, 2007

Wouldn't be the first time.
posted by ikkyu2 at 6:11 AM on February 14, 2007

Why does it have to be in an abandoned building? Does that give it a noticeable sound?

It seems like the amount of time you would spend searching for an adeqaute abandoned building could just as easily go into searching for someone willing to let you have access to a warehouse for the same price and less potential hassle.
posted by JJ86 at 6:38 AM on February 14, 2007

I don't know if it would be all that easy- there just aren't that many abandoned buildings that have reasonable access, are someplace you won't get mugged, have no neighbors that are going to call the cops, or have power (are you going to record using a generator?). You might be able to do a break-in recording session somewhere in Oakland. I don't really think the idea is worth the hassle, though.
posted by oneirodynia at 3:14 PM on February 14, 2007

Response by poster: Makes sense. It was never set in stone for the recording to be done in an abandoned building, per se, it was just the first thing that popped in my head. I will try for a warehouse space though.

Thanks everyone!
posted by Bappy Lorenzo at 5:55 PM on February 14, 2007

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