I play tasty guitar parts in any style for your project with a focus on FEEL and GROOVE!
1. Acoustic demo of your song, super fast. 2. A guitar solo for your track, super fast. 3. A fully rendered song with acoustic guitar, electric guitar and a guitar solo if needed. I want to understand your song and then realize it in the best, most musical, original way possible!
Send me a note through the contact button above.
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Interview with Paul L.
Q: Tell us about a project you worked on you are especially proud of and why. What was your role?
A: Writing song demos for the Wailers. I don't look like a guy who plays reggae (!), but a friend of mine down in Miami, Immanuel Ramirez (IMA Studios) associated with a Wailers project brought me in because he felt I understood "idiom" and he knows I am a writer (we had played in a reggae party group in college up in Toronto). Some demos I wrote from scratch, others I provided the guitar tracks, and some I top-lined the vocals. I very much enjoyed these different aspects of collaboration: demo writer/guitarist/top-liner.
Q: Tell us about your studio setup.
A: I have a very simple array of recording microphones and guitar amplifiers which are interfaced into logic for tracking and editing. I have 15 guitars that cover any of the acoustic and electric tones that will best suite a track, and a deep understanding of when to use what guitar, as well as why.
Q: What are you working on at the moment?
A: I am currently working on some song sketches for Toronto EDM outfit, Key n Krates; remixing demos recorded for the Wailers and recording a country song that I wrote recently. That sounds like the most schizophrenic workload, lol, but that's EXACTLY what I like the most - projects spanning many styles, and which are challenging in fresh ways.
Q: Analog or digital and why?
A: I like digital just because it affords so much more in the way of sound editing and online sharing, the bouncing back and forth of ideas. Also, the analog modelling is so good now. Depending on the project, or the client's wishes however, I will either mic up an old-style tube amplifier, or use digital modelling effects for certain things.
Q: What questions do customers most commonly ask you? What's your answer?
A: "Who do you sound like?" That's a common one. My answer is, "I sound like the guy that respects your song and you as it's creator, and plays for those two things." Ok, I don't usually answer with that, lol, but I like any guitarist that is authentic and believable in their approach and emotion. Stevie Ray Vaughan - just so intense and SO funky; BB King - he barely plays more than 4 notes every solo but they have the perfect rhythm and the perfect tone. John Mayer - he is very obviously a student of Hendrix, Clapton and Stevie Ray Vaughan but put through the Millennial musical blender. Prince, Nile Rodgers, I mean...
Q: What's the biggest misconception about what you do?
A: Not just me, but any guitarist - I think the misconception is that a guitarist just wants to "shred" and put riffs and solos all over a track. If you barely hear the guitars, but the track sounds 100 times better, I feel like I have served the client and the song. The flip side to that is that I can provide the signature "hook" or "riff" that was missing. :)
Q: What was your career path? How long have you been doing this?
A: I primarily came up as a performer and a writer, but because so many friends around me studied music production and engineering, I have unofficially been studying music production and tracking since college. I feel I have performed ever type of session imaginable...
Q: How would you describe your style?
A: Funky, Bluesy, Emotional, Itchy, Tasty.
Q: Which artist would you like to work with and why?
A: Daft Punk. I love how they draw from an obvious love of pop music history, but their new recordings always sound fresh and well-implemented. The 'mystery' and freedom of artists like Daft Punk, Marshmello, Deadmau5 - even beyond being an intriguing image/concept of hidden identity frees these artists from any race or age bias. The music is what leads, and that is an inspiring realization. Music can be timeless, ageless, race-less, and faceless.
Q: Can you share one music production tip?
A: I think a song often has it's own intent and voice. A producer's job should be to nurture that and just lead the song to where it wants to go naturally. A great song can be produced many different ways, many genres. I think as a guitarist and vocalist it is fun to just lay down a LOT of ideas and then work like a sculpter and trim the fat. This also allows the client many sonic options and textures.
Q: What type of music do you usually work on?
A: Pop, Rock, Country, RnB, EDM but really, anything. I am confident in all modern styles, but what intrigues me the most are styles that are more forward-thinking like modern pop and EDM, or fresh takes on RnB and bluesy styes.
Q: What's your strongest skill?
A: I'd like to believe my strongest "skill" is a creative one - understanding the essence of the writer's intent, and then serving that idea through recording techniques and choice of instrument. Also, a part of the process is to offer up creative suggestions and solutions. Sometimes a client really knows what they want, and then there are times where it's an open invitation for me to create parts. Both scenarios are rewarding and usually there is a balance of the two.
Q: What do you bring to a song?
A: I want to understand the client's idea and then serve that idea, or make suggestions that help it be the best it can be. I am thinking like a producer to make the TRACK the best it can be - a wider view, not just a guitarist. Sometimes it only takes one special, almost inaudible, layered guitar part to make a track 'pop', or an in-your-face power-chord chorus. Whatever it is, the SONG is what is being served - not me just trying to put guitar parts all over the place for the sake of it!
Q: What's your typical work process?
A: I hear what the client tells me about their track and the vibe they are going for. Often the job is to cut guitar parts with real instruments to replace the digital/programmed guitars on the original demo. Or, the job is a demo that does not yet have guitar on in which there is a creative discussion regarding what the client is looking for sonically and creatively.
Q: What other musicians or music production professionals inspire you?
A: Who inspires me?! Oh man, I will try to keep this brief! Prince, The Beatles, Nile Rodgers on the classic end, and Ryan Tedder, Daft Punk, Keys n Krates and Marshmello on the modern end. Additionally, anyone I have never heard before inspires me.
Q: Describe the most common type of work you do for your clients.
A: The most common requests are for acoustic guitars, arpeggiated "clean" electric guitars that provide texture under keys and synth parts. With that said, I have done bass too, because my father and brother are bass players and many of my friends and clients know I have a bass lying around!
Q: Is there anyone on SoundBetter you know and would recommend to your clients?
A: Me. :)
Q: What's your 'promise' to your clients?
A: My promise to my clients is that, this is not a job, this is art and I respect your creativity. With that in mind, it doesn't matter how much time I spend on your project - it's going to be "right" and you are going to be satisfied.
Q: What do you like most about your job?
A: I am honoured to be trusted with someone's creativity, and it is my pleasure and privilege to play a small part in making someone's creative idea an even better realized reality. I love meeting and working with creative people, it's always a positive experience!
Q: What questions do you ask prospective clients?
A: What band/artist inspired this track? What are your plans for this track? Are you going for a modern vibe or traditional vibe? Acoustic or electric?
Q: What advice do you have for a customer looking to hire a provider like you?
A: Keep an open mind regarding ideas and suggestions for your project, and you can find solace in the fact that my ideas are ONLY to serve your project and not my ego!
Q: If you were on a desert island and could take just 5 pieces of gear, what would they be?
A: 1. Laptop with Logic 2. Any interface 3. A Condenser mic 4. A Fender Stratocaster 5. A Taylor Acoustic Guitar