What are your rates?

Tiny Telephone A room is $325 a day, B room is $275 a day, C room is $300. Most first engineers are an additional $200-$250 (although a few are more, please ask) a day.

We don’t have a card rate (i.e., a higher rate for labels and wealthy clients), and we don’t discount time. Floating fees and improvised pricing have alienated musicians from recording studios.

Outside producers are very welcome, but you’ll need a first engineer ($200-$250 a day) for the entire length of your booking.

How do I get there?

We are located in San Francisco’s Mission district. Here’s a google map and detailed directions to get you on your way. Please remember we’re on the Mission side of HWY 101, not the Potrero Hill side. The street address is 1458 San Bruno Ave, SF, 94110. We are 100 yards SE of the skate park.

Where do I get tape? And what kind should I get?

We now provide free 2″ tape to artists and bands who want to discover the magic of analog recording.
We recommend you mix down to ATR 1/2″ tape, we’ll help you with your order. If you want to buy new 2″ tape so you can keep your masters, email us and we’ll send you a link to the best place to buy it.

What’s the parking situation?

We have 2 private parking spaces set aside for you, street parking is very tight and limited to 4 hours. Please carpool to the studio, bringing extra cars will slow down your session as you’ll have to find pay parking. There’s a garage 3 blocks away at 2500 24th St if needed. We do not have room for 15 passenger vans or Sprinters. Make sure you are parked in our designated spaces, please consult with your engineer. Please only park in labeled Tiny Telephone spaces: A1 and A2 for A room, B1 and B2 for B room.

Where do I send the $ for deposits?

To confirm days on our overworked calendar, we need to get a $100 deposit (payable to John Vanderslice) for each day booked. Days can’t be confirmed until receipt of deposit unless prior arrangements are made. We’re happy to give you a 24-hour hold on dates while you sort out availability. Our studio accountant will invoice you once dates are held.

What’s the cancellation policy?

After you confirm days with a deposit, we need three calendar months notice to release days without penalty. If you cancel days within three calendar months you will lose your entire deposit. You can move dates before one month of your booking without penalty. If you cancel within one week of the start of your booking, you are responsible for the entire amount, including engineering fees, of your booking. Please don’t cancel your booking. We are doing the impossible: running two affordable recording studios in a prohibitively expensive city, please help us!

Can I rent a drum set?

No! (They are free.) We now have two excellent drum sets: a vintage Slingerland kit from the 60’s and a wonderful Japanese-made Yamaha Custom. Please reserve the kit you want in advance. We have good hardware and new Ambassador heads available for these kits as well.

Who is responsible for piano tuning?

The client is solely responsible for piano tuning. It’s frequently moved and treated, both of which knock the C3 out of tune. We’ll gladly have you in a few days before your session to check the tuning. If the piano is central to your project, we strongly encourage you to book the tuner for the day of your session. He has keys, so he can start well before you load in. Try to book him in advance.
Piano tuners: Steve Benjamins, 925 284 3077
Or: Mark Skowronek 415 864 4688
They are both great and reliable.

Where should I stay if I’m from out of town?

The best place by far is airbnb. Also, if you have the time/desire, I highly recommend you learn how to game Priceline. Start here (pay very close attention to #9. What is a free re-bid?) and consult with Priceline maps like betterbidding.com and biddingfortravel.com. I highly recommend bidding weeks before, hotels get more expensive on Priceline as you get closer to your stay. It’ll take an hour or so to get up to speed, but I’ve stayed in hundreds of super nice hotels doing this.

Also, if you’re recording for an extended period of time, check craigslist.com for sublets in the Mission.

What else should I know?

  • Questions about the session, start time, preproduction, etc., will be handled by your engineer.
  • Here’s a floor plan of the Tiny Telephone A room.
  • We have coffee provided by Ritual Coffee Roasters, as well as a wonderful assortment of over a dozen loose leaf teas.
  • There are unlimited options for excellent food in the area, including many who will deliver. 24th Street is one of the greatest food corridors in the world.
  • Making records is not easy; I’ve been there and I want to make your experience here productive and meaningful. If you have any problems/concerns please contact me directly. Thanks.