10+ years professional mixing, recording and FOH engineer 4+ years producer/executive producer 4+ years associate professor - audio engineering Berklee College of Music ('89) Extensive experience with international clients
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Interview with JK Studio
Q: Tell us about a project you worked on you are especially proud of and why. What was your role?
A: "George Benson and the Count Basie Orchestra" (1990) as an assistant engineer. In hindsight, working on that project with Al Schmitt taught me 90% of what I needed to know in this business and basically launched my career.
Q: What are you working on at the moment?
A: This, shopping for more gear, and setting up/fine tuning my new studio.
Q: Is there anyone on SoundBetter you know and would recommend to your clients?
A: Just getting started here. Didn't have time to look for anyone yet.
Q: Analog or digital and why?
A: Analog, if I had an unlimited budget. The way human hearing works is analog. The only reason we have digital is because there's a need for storage, editing and delivery of sounds. If there's a perfect analog way to store, edit and deliver the sounds, we would have no use for digital. In practice, some combination of both.
Q: What's your 'promise' to your clients?
A: Nothing, other than do the best job I possibly can under the circumstances.
Q: What do you like most about your job?
A: That it's my job.
Q: What questions do customers most commonly ask you? What's your answer?
A: Question: Can you make the mix louder? Answer: Turn up the volume!!! Ask your mastering engineer.
Q: What's the biggest misconception about what you do?
A: I don't work for private equity boutique investment bank anymore.
Q: What questions do you ask prospective clients?
A: Am I getting paid, how much am I getting paid, and when do I get paid? Just kidding...
Q: What advice do you have for a customer looking to hire a provider like you?
A: If you are looking for an engineer in this space, it's probably because you either don't know any good engineers, not satisfied with the one you have or you don't have the money to get the one you want. Chances are, more probable than not, you won't find one here. But, that doesn't mean you shouldn't try.
Q: What was your career path? How long have you been doing this?
A: 15+ years.
Q: How would you describe your style?
A: Don't have one, never had one, not looking to get one.
Q: Which artist would you like to work with and why?
A: Big Phat Band. Just love that stuff and can't get enough of it these days.
Q: Can you share one music production tip?
A: Find a mastering engineer you can trust. More the better. Unless you are absolutely certain, don't let your mix engineer master your songs. It rarely works.
Q: What type of music do you usually work on?
A: Pop/rock, jazz, funk, R & B, folk. No EDM, please.
Q: What's your strongest skill?
Q: What do you bring to a song?
Q: What's your typical work process?
A: I spend a lot of time before I begin working listening to what the clients have to say about themselves, their work and their expectations of my finished work. Once I begin working, I'll do a quick rough mix and discuss the mix with the client and get back to finishing the details.
Q: Tell us about your studio setup.
Q: What other musicians or music production professionals inspire you?
A: Al Schmitt
Q: Describe the most common type of work you do for your clients.
A: Mixing original recordings for commercial releases. Although I prefer to track the sessions myself, more often than not, I end up only mixing songs recorded by other professional engineers from outside U.S. I travel occasionally to track sessions, mostly in large commercial studios as a freelancer. I also have a mobile rig based on Apogee Symphony 24x24 for live on-location recording.