A Brief History
Malcolm Jackson Quipment
The name MJQ is a homage to the 50’s jazz quartet that was a favourite of Malcolm & older brother John Jackson growing up in Rickmansworth, where their father, the broadcaster Jack Jackson created the UK’s first ever professional home studio for the purpose of preparing the radio programmes that would make him a household name.
The former trumpeter & bandleader had started out on the BBC and then Radio Luxembourg playing the new music from America. Being the first DJ to have fun on the radio, his pioneering use of live samples & funny commentary was hugely popular and eventually the BBC (or “Aunty” as he first called them) gave him a slot on the Light Programme.
With 12 million listeners every Saturday afternoon, a single play of a record on Jack Jackson’s Record Round Up would result in over 250,000 units sold by the following Monday lunchtime. His show was a radio phenomenon that inspired the next generation of DJs including Kenny Everett, John Peele & Bob Harris.
After Jack moved to Tenerife (sending in his taped show by plane) his two sons ran the studio commercially and throughout the 70s & 80s Jackson Studios became synonymous with rock & punk bands, particularly Motorhead’s Ace of Spades, engineered by Vic Maile.
My Dad taught me music production, editing and presentation. I learnt about the business from clients who used the studio and became proficient in mic technique and instrumentation. My brother & I then took over the studio at Rickmansworth and set up our own label producing over 100 albums from recording to sleeve design, as well as many singles. We worked with classic musicians, brass bands, troublesome singers and great singers. I studied with engineers such as Keith Grant, Adrian Kerridge, John Timperley, Bob Auger, Bill Price and Joe Meek.
Recording Studio Property & Equipment Sales
John and Malcolm fell into the role of studio broker in 1969 when Barry Gray of Thunderbirds fame asked for help clearing out his studio before moving abroad.
1981 – “Sale of the Century” @ Abbey Road Studios
1985 – George Martin’s custom Neve A4792 console from Air Montserrat
1988 – John Lennon/ Ringo Starr Equipment Sale from Startling Studios, Tittenhurst Park
1992 – George Martin’s Neve from Studio Two @ Air Studios Oxford Circus
2012 – Abbey Road’s Neve VR from Studio Two
2017 – EMI TG 12345 MKIV “Dark Side of the Moon” console for Mike Hedges in partnership with Bonhams
2019 – Abbey Road’s DMM vinyl cutting lathe (also sourcing the VMS80 that replaced it)
2020 – EMI TG 12345 Beatles Abbey Road console (the original and very first TG console that EMI produced, which is currently being restored @ MJQ HQ in London) in preparation for sale by auction
The music business charity DEAF (Distinguished Audio Engineers Federation) was co-founded by Malcolm & associated engineers and their hell-raising charity galas raised hundreds of thousands of pounds for children with hearing difficulties.
Today the Jackson brothers are working with the Chiltern Open Air Museum in a campaign to rebuild the studios as a community cafe, recording studio and event space for the community and to educate & inspire young people with a working history of the studios (link).
Some clients in the past 50 yrs:
Abbey Road Studios
Air Studios Montserrat
Barry Gray (Thunderbirds)
Bray Film studios for Gerry Anderson
Britannia Row Studios
British Grove Studios
Church Studio for the Eurythmics
Command Studios Piccadilly
De Lane Lea Studios, Soho
Eden Studios Chiswick
Electric Mastering, Westbourne Studios
Elstree Film Studios
EMI Studios Barcelona
John Lennon’s studio at Tittenhurst Park
Mark Angelo Studios
Townhouse Studios for Universal Records
Trident Studios Soho
Wisseloord Studios, Netherlands