Instruments: Engineer, Studio Owner
Date of Birth: 1937
Place of Birth: Birmingham, Alabama

1991 Music Industry Award

Parlaying a life-long interest in electronics into an engineering position with WAPI radio during the mid-50s, C. Ed Boutwell went on to establish the first recording studio in Birmingham.

During the 50s, there were no facilities to record commercials in the city, and the radio station was required to record the jingles before they could be aired. Boutwell soon became the most proficient at the task, and in 1960 formed the first independent studio in the area.

In 1961 he resigned his position with the radio station to pursue his interest in recording.

In addition to recording most of the commercial jingles recorded in the city during the 60s, Boutwell worked with aspiring musicians wanting to make a "hit record". Among those were the Allman Joys, who later recorded as the Allman Brothers, the Candymen, who became the Atlanta Rhythm Section, Paul Hornsby and Barry Beckett.

In 1975, he won three Clios for his Southern Airline jingle and was included in the Clio Hall of Fame. He has written over 850 jingles during his career, and his invention of the "Rolling Punch", an electronic editing process, has made modern multi-track overdubbing less difficult.

Source: Alabama Music Hall of Fame

C. Ed Boutwell (born 1937) founded Birmingham's first commercial recording studio, Boutwell Studios, in 1961.Boutwell worked weekends at Decca studios in Nashville in the 1950s. He edited Johnny Horton's "The Battle of New Orleans". During the week he worked as a radio engineer at WAPI-AM and recorded musicians in his informal home studio.

He started his own business in 1961 and began writing and recording radio commercials, using the rock and roll bands that came by as session musicians in exchange for studio time. He wrote more than 850 jingles over the course of his career, and won three Clio awards for his jingle for Southern Airlines in 1975. He also invented the "rolling punch" process for electronic editon.

Boutwell retired from working at his studio full time in 1986. He was inducted into the Alabama Music Hall of Fame in 1991 and into the Birmingham Record Collectors Hall of Fame in 2007. He is member of the Alabama Historical Radio Society.



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