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Originally published January 8, 2014 at 7:42 PM | Page modified January 8, 2014 at 10:38 PM

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‘Treehouse Masters’ wows CeeLo Green, Bear Creek Studio

Singer CeeLo Green christens an unusual treehouse studio in Woodinville.


Special to The Seattle Times

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Singer CeeLo Green is rarely at a loss for words, which is one of the reasons he was a popular star of the NBC television series, “The Voice.” But on Wednesday, Green walked into a Woodinville studio constructed for the Animal Planet reality show “Treehouse Masters” and was stunned into silence.

Then came one word: “Wow.”

Green’s “wow” came after climbing into a treehouse built by Fall City’s Pete Nelson, the star of “Treehouse Masters.” It sits 18 feet off the ground, between western red cedars.

“Some guitars are made out of cedar,” said Nelson, who built the structure in less than two weeks. “This treehouse is a beautiful place to make music.”

This treehouse sits behind Bear Creek Studio, itself a legendary piece of music real estate. Bands from Soundgarden to Heart have cut platinum records in the rustic barn.

Bear Creek owners Manny and Joe Hadlock hadn’t even seen the inside of the treehouse Wednesday morning — a TV crew was waiting to film the “reveal” — but had known enough to decorate the walls with artwork from the couple’s daughter Ann.

Their son Ryan, who was nominated for a Grammy Award for his work at Bear Creek with the Lumineers, was waiting to produce Green’s session, which would be the first music made in the room. “I’ve already got another band, Vance Joy, coming into the treehouse on Friday,” Hadlock said.

Hadlock grew up living next door to his parents’ studio, but before “Treehouse Masters” the only treehouse on the property was one he made as a boy. The new, professional example is wired with a fully functioning mixing board, and also has a composting toilet.

For CeeLo Green on Wednesday, it had a magical air. “It’s probably every adult’s childhood dream to have a treehouse,” he said. “I lived in housing projects growing up, and we put together this crude treehouse there. This is an evolution of that to an ideal.”

Green was set to work on a track titled “Amy” with Hadlock, and he was honored Animal Planet had brought him in to christen the new studio for television. “I love nature and I love the woods,” he said. “This is that.”

The Bear Creek episode of “Treehouse Masters” airs on Feb. 21 on Animal Planet.

Charles R. Cross: therocketmagazinelives@gmail.com



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