Jim Diamond (music producer)

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For other people of the same name, see Jim Diamond (disambiguation).
Jim Diamond
Genres Indie rock
Occupation(s) Audio engineer, Record producer
Instruments Vocals, bass guitar, guitar
Years active 1995–present
Labels Ghetto Recorders
Associated acts The Dirtbombs, The Fleshtones, The Go, Paik, The Ponys, Screamray, The White Stripes, The Laundronauts

Jim Diamond is a music producer, studio engineer, and bass guitar player based in Detroit, Michigan. He worked on the first two White Stripes albums and played bass with The Dirtbombs.


Jim Diamond started playing saxophone and classical guitar at 10 years old. By 13 years old he was playing bass guitar in a rock band called Inferno. Later in high school he also played guitar and sang in a band called The Neo Plastics. In 1983 Diamond graduated from Trenton High School, in Trenton, MI. In 1988 he went on to get a Telecommunications degree (with a minor in music) from Michigan State University. During his college years he sang and played guitar in the "speed gold" band, "The Wayouts". In 1995, after college, Diamond started working at Harvest Music and Sound Design in Lansing, MI. At Harvest Music Diamond worked on "car commercials and Christian metal," he later remembered. He then moved to Austin, TX and started playing guitar and bass with such bands as the Beatosonics, Herman the German and Das Cowboy. Diamond returned to Detroit and started Ghetto Recorders in the fall of 1996. Diamond was also a longtime member of the popular Detroit band The Dirtbombs. Diamond wrote and performed the vocals on the tune "I'm Through With White Girls." The song appears on the Dirtbombs studio album Dangerous Magical Noise and the compilation CD Sympathetic Sounds of Detroit, which was recorded by Jack White.

Ghetto Recorders[edit]

Jim Diamond runs Ghetto Recorders, an analog recording studio in a loft and apartment space in downtown Detroit, taking over the recording site and equipment from John Linardos, who went on to help start up the first microbrewery in Detroit. The studio contains equipment that is at least 20 years old. He uses a 2" 24-track tape machine among other mixing boards and various equipment.

History of Ghetto Recorders[edit]

Ghetto Recorders studio was originally a chicken processing factory in the 1920s and 30s. The control room (where the recording equipment is) used to be the freezer where the factory stored the chickens. Ghetto Recorders first release was by the spazzy, garage-punk duo Bantam Rooster, fronted by Diamond's long-time friend, Thomas J. Potter.


On the Motorcity Brewing Works' live compilation "GhettoBlaster," Diamond appeared as the front man for "Jim Diamond's Pop Monsoon." As proprietor and chief engineer at Ghetto Recorders, Diamond has worked with, and in some cases helped launch the careers of, several well-known indie rock performers, including The High Strung, The Dirtbombs, The Fleshtones, Electric Six, The Pack A.D., Left Lane Cruiser, The Laundronauts, The Legendary Tigerman, The Witches[disambiguation needed], Bantam Rooster, Rockfour, The Gore Gore Girls, The Mooney Suzuki, The Compulsive Gamblers, The Dirtys, Lost Kids, The Ponys, The Silencers, The Go, The Hentchmen, Screamray, Thee Emergency, Outrageous Cherry, Paik, The Clone Defects, The Charms, They Come In Threes, The Sights, The Volebeats, and The White Stripes.

  • Diamond also composed and performed songs for the 2005 horror/comedy movie Santa's Slay which is distributed by Lion's Gate. He also composed and performed the theme music for Detroit Metropolitan Airport's "123Park" campaign.

Legal dispute with The White Stripes[edit]

From 2004 to 2006, Diamond was involved in a legal battle with The White Stripes over royalty payments. Diamond claimed joint authorship of the master recordings he and the White Stripes created at Ghetto Recorders in 1999. Diamond lost the lawsuit, with the jury returning a verdict against his claim after deliberating for less than an hour. In 2006, White Stripes guitarist/lead vocalist Jack White cited the legal battle with Diamond as one of his reasons for moving to Nashville, Tennessee.[citation needed]

Work with Andrea Álvarez[edit]

On June 2008 he travelled to Argentina's capital city Buenos Aires to produce the third album of the well-known Argentinian percussionist-drummer Andrea Álvarez. Along that month they recorded on a MCI analogic machine what would become on "Doble A," which counted with the participation of various Argentinian musicians, such as Ricardo Mollo. The album was released on October and received very positive reviews.


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