Original Artist Brings Back Capricorn's Famous Mural

Capricorn Mural / Raymond Tubb (WGXA)

Part of Macon's music past is getting a face lift.

A famous mural is going back up on the walls of Macon's Capricorn Studios. Michael Pierce is part of the effort to tie in rebirth and rebuilding with the past.

"I would have figured it would have fallen off the building by now", Pierce says about his original mural.

This mural started as an earth day project back in 1996.

Some friends got together and invited Pierce to help with their efforts to try to spruce up the old building and lot.

"I was here day and night. And we had a group of people that was clearing up this lot. Cause it was real trashed out and stuff so we built a fire pit in the shape of a turtle and had it burning and it was fun!"

And 21 years later, that early effort aimed at someday giving the old Capricorn Recording Studios new life is finally taking shape.

"If it wasn't for somebody putting some money into it, it may just as well fall on in," Pierce says. "And it's going to be a unique spot in Macon".

The studio, once home to southern rock royalty like the Allman Brothers, is set to become a music and arts center for Mercer University.

Brand new lofts now surround it, insuring new life for a once near-blighted area.

The new mural is based on that original one from 20 years ago, but don't expect an exact replica.

"This is like a story. This is a story you know. I'm telling it again, it's got a little more inflectiion here and stuff going on," Pierce says.

A description that actually fits the entire block.

And like this building, Pierce's roots run deep in Macon and in Southern rock.

A journey that took him to art school in Atlanta, and to meet new music friends in South Carolina before eventually leading back to Macon.

"In 1972 they signed a contract with Capricorn (Records), and they became The Marshall Tucker Band, and when they came in here and started recording I came in here with them and hung out when they were recording and stuff, and later on I became friends with Jimmy Hall (of Wet Willie), and Grinder Switch and the (Allman) Brothers, Jaimoe and all that so there's a lot of history in the building and a lot of people connected to it".

Now, with the blessing of the developer of the lofts, the iconic mural is coming back to life. A new direction. With a nod to the past, along with a man who lived part of Macon's southern rock history.

"I've lived in California. I've lived in Europe. I've lived in India. I've roamed around Pakistan, and so this part of all of that, it's part of the information, Pierce says of the design. "You know it's tribal, it's terrestrial. It's out there".

There will be about 125 lofts around the Old Capricorn Studios. They've just started leasing.

Mercer University is working to raise more than one million dollars to renovate the studios to create a music incubator for groups and performers. A new take on the old building.

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