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Moore County resident receives recording engineer award

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Jim Pugh
(Submitted photo)
Lynchburg resident Jim Pugh was one of seven Nashville recording engineers to receive the first annual Lifetime Achievement Award from the Nashville section of the Audio Engineering Society and the Country Music Hall of Fame.

The award was presented June 3 in the Hall of Fame's Ford Theater in Nashville. The engineers honored were called "Music City Recording Pioneers." They covered a period of time in Nashville's recording history from post-World War II to the 1980s.

In 1967, while working for Electronic Equipment in Atlanta, Ga., Pugh built two recording consoles: one for Acuff-Rose Studios, owned by Wes Rose and Roy Acuff, and one for the newly built Woodland Sound Studio. Because of the lack of space at Electronic Equipment, the consoles were built in Pugh's home basement. Pugh recruited a radio engineer and two neighbors, a lawyer and a social worker, to assist with the project, which took almost a year of full days and into many nights.

In 1968, Pugh was hired by Woodland Sound Studios as chief technical engineer and was called upon when record producers thought something "just didn't sound right." He worked with well-known artists such as Charlie Daniels, Barbara Mandrell, Wayne Newton, Ronnie Milsap and the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band. He also designed and supervised construction of many additions to Woodland over the years. He was the mentor for several recording engineers who are still active in the recording industry.

Pugh left the recording business in 1989. Since moving to Lynchburg in 1999, he has been building furniture out of used Jack Daniel's Whiskey barrels. He became a Certified Lay Speaker in the United Methodist Church and for last three years has been pastor of Goose Pond United Methodist Church on the Woodbury Highway in Manchester. The Pughs have two children and two grandchildren.

Pugh's interest in electronics began in high school in Berlin, Pa., as a ham radio operator. During his four years in the Air Force, he taught electronics at Lowry Air Force Base in Denver, where he met his wife, June, from Atlanta. June was a student at the University of Colorado. After his discharge, the couple moved to Atlanta, where he went to school at Georgia Tech. He was the assistant chief engineer for WGST radio, prior to being hired by Electronic Equipment.

Pugh was given this prestigious award because of the standards of excellence he set and insisted on during his career at Woodland.

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