By Darren Paltrowitz
A Hudson music business staple along with Bar/None Records and WFMU, Water Music Recorders opened in Hoboken over 30 years ago. Based on Madison Street, Water Music may look like a typical non-descript building, but recording history has been made there, right across the street from Shop-Rite. Beyoncé, Shakira, Ryan Adams, Cyndi Lauper, U2, R. Kelly, Taking Back Sunday, and the Dave Matthews Band are among the many artists whose music has been helmed there.
Owner Rob Grenoble – himself an RCA recording artist before his Water Music life — spoke to RIVER VIEW OBSERVER about his life as a studio owner, which is nowhere near as bleak as music industry critics have led many to believe. In fact, Water Music is currently in discussions to open a satellite studio and artist management firm in 2016.
RVO: What brought you to Hoboken in the first place?
RG: In September 1978, we were dying to get out of Long Branch, where we had moved months before, foolishly thinking it was close to Manhattan. A friend of the band was working as a receptionist at a commercial film production company in Manhattan. One day she turned to Bob Ramos, one of their sales people, and said, “Ramos, my friends want to move to the NY area. They don’t have a lot of money. Where should they go?” Ramos was running out the door. Without missing a beat, over his shoulder he yelled, “Tell them to go to Hoboken. It’s the next big thing.”