From the first time Will Yip stepped in a recording studio as a drummer at age 12, he immediately became engrossed in the process of creating something in that setting. From that day forward, he always had a dream of working at Studio 4, the legendary Philadelphia space known for the classic albums from the likes of Bob Dylan, Billy Joel, and The Fugees that were put to tape between its walls.
When college finally came around, Yip enrolled at Philadelphia’s Temple University “just so I could take a class with the producer that taught a class here, Phil [Nicolo],” he tells me over the phone. “I interned there and then a year later, I just forced my way in.”
Quite a bit has changed since the day he began interning at Studio 4. In 2013, Yip bought into the studio to continue expanding resume of production and engineering credits, ranging from Ms. Lauryn Hill (with whom Yip spent time on the road as a live drummer and tour manager) to blossoming indie rock darlings Tigers Jaw to hardcore-turned-shoegaze giants Title Fight. Yip’s involvement in Studio 4 opened new windows for under-the-radar punk bands to polish their sound with someone genuinely invested in helping them craft something special.
“This studio wasn’t used to recording punk bands, it was a studio recording Top 40 records. I just fell into the right place at the right time… I just love being involved. I love being in the band. That’s kind of the role I try to take when I make a record. I love being the fifth, sixth member in the band. I like being a part of the big picture.”