Making a record can be a tough process. Don’t go at it alone! A producer can help you see your musical vision through to the end.
Michael spent over a decade as a touring and session musician with a variety of artists. From 2008-2013 he became the ghoulish guitar slinger, LAMENTOR, for the celebrated horror punk band GRAVE ROBBER. After coming off the road Michael completed his graduate work, and has been working as a producer, artist developer, and session guitarist. Michael is also a professor of music at Indiana Wesleyan University, and has also been a part of music faculty at both Huntington University and Manchester University. Michael currently resides in Marion, IN. where he continues to do guitar session work for a variety of artists, including some Dove and Juno award nominated and winning artists. He currently owns and operates The Dugout, his private production/recording studio.
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Interview with Mike (Lamentor) Walter
Q: If you were on a desert island and could take just 5 pieces of gear, what would they be?
A: I'd really just want my Kenny Hill classical guitar. One guitar would be just fine.
Q: Which artist would you like to work with and why?
A: I'd love to work with POD! Love that band!
Q: What are you working on at the moment?
A: I am working on a musical/movie called "Cool's Angel." Its a musical about James Dean, and the music was written by my friend and colleague Todd Syswerda, who also teaches at Indiana Wesleyan with me.
Q: Analog or digital and why?
A: I don't care. I love both, and it just depends on what is needed to be the most creative. I typically track with outboard analog gear, but I am %100 in the box for mixing.
Q: What do you like most about your job?
A: Being around cool musicians and cool music. Also, drinking coffee, making rock'n'roll, and quoting terrible movies.
Q: What's the biggest misconception about what you do?
A: I can make anything sound good through editing. Sorry, a turd is a turd no matter how you polish it.
Q: What questions do you ask prospective clients?
A: What kinds of music do you like? Who is your favorite artist? Favorite place in the world to visit? What are you hoping to achieve with your project? blah blah blah. I just want to know the person. I need to know that we actually can work together creatively and personally. Thats what matters to me.
Q: What advice do you have for a customer looking to hire a provider like you?
A: Music is a creative endeavor fueled by emotion, so be sure to find a producer you can feel comfortable enough to truly open up with emotionally. Most importantly, just have fun.
Q: What was your career path? How long have you been doing this?
A: After failing at baseball, I focused all my efforts on music. I started working professionally in music back in 2004 as a session & touring guitarist, as well as a recording engineer. I worked on a BS and an MA in music, as well as a DMin in worship, while also touring in rock and metal groups for a few years.
Q: Can you share one music production tip?
A: Make sure your microphone is facing the right direction! How's that for a tip?
Q: What type of music do you usually work on?
A: I work a lot in Folk, Indie Rock, Worship, Pop Punk, and Hard Rock. At the moment I have been working on pitching music for Musical Theater and Film.
Q: What's your strongest skill?
A: Drinking coffee
Q: What do you bring to a song?
A: I bring a since of movement, setting, and solid arrangement.
Q: What's your typical work process?
A: I try to create a comfortably creative environment, and then get to work. I work very fast, and do everything I can to keep the gear from becoming noticeable. Creating and hanging out...thats what I do.
Q: Tell us about your studio setup.
A: I have a five room private studio filled with lots of creative tools. I'm a producer, so my interests are in instruments and sound makers; not so much on recording gear. However, I have lots of preamps, UA Apollos, Pro Tools HD, nice microphones, blah blah blah.
Q: Describe the most common type of work you do for your clients.
A: Most of my client work consists of songwriting and production (pre-pro, tracking, editing, mixing). I also do a lot of session guitar work.