What are you working on at the moment?
Due to confidentiality agreements I can not say, but that should tell you all you need to know. lol I am working on both major label and local projects. I do not discriminate. Good music is good music and deserves a chance to be heard.
Analog or digital and why?
Both. Because they are both amazing at what they do for the production process.
What's your 'promise' to your clients?
Im not happy until you are happy.
What do you like most about your job?
People. I love helping people grow and perform in ways they never knew they could.
What questions do customers most commonly ask you? What's your answer?
Can we price it out for 10 songs and then later add a song or two if we feel we need them for no extra charge since I am already spending so much money? My answer is simple. You can have two of these three things, good, fast, and cheap. Only two can exist at once. If you add more work to my plate I have to charge you for the extra time. McDonalds wont give you extra fries just because you ordered a happy meal. lol
What's the biggest misconception about what you do?
That all engineers and studios sound the same and do the same quality work.
What questions do you ask prospective clients?
What do you plan to do with your project when you are done? Do you plan to have it professionally mastered? When does the project need to be completed?
What advice do you have for a customer looking to hire a provider like you?
The most important thing is that your vision and songs are as important to the provider as they are to you. dont be just another cash cow for an over priced studio.
If you were on a desert island and could take just 5 pieces of gear, what would they be?
Uh, I would not take audio gear. I'd take water, cliff bars, my iphone so I could call and get rescued lol. But my five favorite pieces of gear would be the Neve 8816, Raven from slate digital, the Dangerous monitor system, my Genelec 1031a's, and the Bottle tube mic from Blue.
What was your career path? How long have you been doing this?
I have been touring and performing all over the country as a saxophonist since the age of 15. That led to my engineering which began in 2004 as a result of my hating how most engineers made my sax sound. I always thought I could do better, so I learned through apprenticing with a good friend. After having success with my first three clients such as a national major label release and lots of charting around the country, I went to a production school to fill in the gaps I could not learn on my own. Since then I opened my own studio in 2006 and have been doing it ever since.
How would you describe your style?
Very musical but supported with technical accuracy.
Which artist would you like to work with and why?
So many. Stevie Wonder. His musical genius speaks for itself.
Can you share one music production tip?
Editing is life. Even in mixing poor editing and organization will destroy the quality of a song. Keep all the audio clips clean, faded, and the timing where it needs to be. That does not mean always perfectly on the grid. Music does need to breath, but good fades and well edited sessions sound way better then the opposite.
What type of music do you usually work on?
All kinds. Here in Minneapolis and in the major label industry I have found a niche mixing gospel music, but my client list is very diverse.
What's your strongest skill?
Musical instinct. It drives all of the many things I do. Mixing is probably my strongest skill besides that.
What do you bring to a song?
Musical instinct is crucial to maintaining the integrity of the song and preserving its story. I serve the song, the genre and the clients artistic vision first.
What's your typical work process?
Depends on the project. I usually get all the organization and editing done first. I like working in layers. When tracking I am very into getting as much of a full take as possible to maintain vibe. But when fixing spots I make sure that the new bits match the rest as close as possible.
Tell us about your studio setup.
I work all over the country but my personal setup is running Pro Tools HD 11, Abelton Live, Logic Pro 10, Slate Digital Raven, Focusrite Rednet interfaces, Dangerous Monitor system, Bitree patchbays, Neve 8816 summing mixer that all mixes go through at the end of the process for analog summing and widening, mic preamps from API, Millennia, Avalon, Chandler, compressors from Manley, Avalon, Chandler, and a distressor, as well tons of plugins and software instruments from Native instruments, Reason 8, Vienna, Sonnox, Spetrasonics, Universal Audio, Waves, Tube Tech, Sound Toys, and so many more. Microphones include the Bottle from Blue, several older U 87s, Earthworks, Sure, Sennheseiser, and much more.
What other musicians or music production professionals inspire you?
Bill Laswell, Bruce Swedien, Stevie Wonder, James Brown, Daniel Lanois, Steve Hodge, Tom Tucker, Paul Peterson, Ricky Peterson, Marcus Miller, Rick Rubin, Johnny Cash, Chris Lord Alge, Tom Lord Alge, Prince, and so many more
Describe the most common type of work you do for your clients.
Mixing, Editing, vocal tuning, vocal production and arranging, saxophone solos and parts, recording and overdubbing, producing, song arranging