Mix magazine recently delved into the classic song "Denis" from Blondie's 1978 sophomore album Plastic Letters, which, as it turns out, was tracked on the early API console at Plaza Sound Studios in New York.
Engineer and Producer Rob Freeman was behind that console for the production of Blondie's first two albums, recorded in September 1976 and June 1977 respectively. Freeman joined the Plaza Sound staff as Head Engineer in 1974 and, in his first two years at the studio, encouraged studio owner Gregg Raffa to make many key changes and upgrades to the equipment and setup, including installing an early 32 channel API console (the first in New York City).
"Our console acted as a demo board, so to speak, for API, who wanted to showcase their new line of consoles in a functioning studio," says Freeman. "Folks from API would come around every so often, bringing people through and saying 'Check out our beautiful board in this spectacular room.'"
"Denis" went on to become a massive hit in Europe and an establishing track for Blondie, whose mainstream success was just around the corner.