Justin Goldner

Musical Swiss-Army Knife

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2 Reviews
Justin Goldner on SoundBetter

Music, sound, vibe and vision: collaborating with independent artists on conceiving and fulfilling their creation

As a producer, songwriter, arranger and session musician active on both coasts, I've been fortunate to contribute to Grammy, Tony and Golden Globe-winning projects and travel the world to make music with other artists who inspire me. I enjoy drawing on a wide vocabulary of both organic and electronic palettes, working alongside artists to help them bring their vision to fruition.

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Credits

AllMusic verified credits for Justin Goldner
  • Cinco Paul
  • Cinco Paul
  • Cinco Paul
  • Cinco Paul
  • Justin Paul
  • Benj Pasek
  • Ben Platt & Original Broadway Cast of Dear Evan Hansen
  • Bri Arden
  • Bri Arden
  • Bri Arden
  • Bri Arden
  • Bri Arden
  • Bri Arden
  • Bri Arden
  • Zach Trandum
  • Jon Epcar
  • The Hustle
  • Nick Blaemire
  • Jared Saltiel
  • Jared Saltiel
  • Jared Saltiel
  • Jared Saltiel
  • Jared Saltiel
  • Jared Saltiel
  • The Greatest Showman Ensemble
  • Abby Bernstein
  • Abby Bernstein
  • Abby Bernstein
  • Abby Bernstein
  • Abby Bernstein
  • Abby Bernstein
  • 9 Horses
  • 9 Horses

Reviews (2)

Endorse Justin Goldner
  1. Review by Cody K.
    starstarstarstarstar

    Justin really is a master songmaker! I came to him with lyrics and an idea for a song, and he created a beautiful arrangement, far surpassing my expectations (which were high given I'm a huge fan of the incredible work he's associated with!). Justin is a great listener, communicator, and just incredibly talented. You can tell he's passionate about music, and you can hear it in his work. Now I gotta go write another song so I can work with him again!

  2. Review by Chris Camilleri
    starstarstarstarstar

    Justin is a classically trained master of performance (he'll charm literally anything that wears strings), and a bastion of studio production. In the comfort of his own prowess he finds ways to bend and tease the well-established norms and guidelines while simultaneously respecting a century of popular music.

    As an engineer and mixer, I have worked with Justin on dozens of songs over the years. I am ceaselessly inspired by the breadth and depth of Justin’s ability as a player and vision as a producer.

    Of the many artists and producers I work with year in and year out, Justin looms large.

Interview with Justin Goldner

  1. Q: What are you working on at the moment?

  2. A: I'm currently working on the third album I've produced for songstress Grace McLean, along with other records for rock band Hey Guy, pianist Mike Tedesco and pop writer Chloe Gasparini. Recent recordings I played on for "Dear Evan Hansen" and "The Greatest Showman" picked up Grammy, Golden Globe and Tony awards, while I was fortunate to perform alongside Sting, James Taylor and Bruce Springsteen at Carnegie Hall, and to perform live on the Grammys telecast from Madison Square Garden.

  3. Q: Is there anyone on SoundBetter you know and would recommend to your clients?

  4. A: Chris Camilleri has been my ace-in-the-hole on more records than I can count. Aside from sharp ears, deep skill with both analog and digital equipment and a broad knowledge of music, Chris has the rare ability to work quickly and effectively while maintaining a good vibe in and out of the studio. When engineering and mixing, he draws on a wide palette of creative solutions, responds well to feedback and is constantly problem-solving so that my clients and I can focus on making music. He has a sharp focus, a tireless work ethic, and is endlessly reliable as a collaborator. Marc Plotkin is a phenomenal multi-hyphenate and hipped me to the platform. I've played sessions and done arrangements for him, and his entrepreneurial spirit is constantly attuned to connecting people and ideas in powerful ways.

  5. Q: How would you describe your style?

  6. A: I'm most often moved by bold, earthy gestures, clearly-outlined musical phrases that propel a song while retaining a sense of depth and texture. I'm drawn to economy of means, as well: relying on just the right ingredients to move the listener is often more powerful than bowling them over with too many muddled ideas.

  7. Q: Analog or digital and why?

  8. A: Both. As Brian Eno says: “Whatever you now find weird, ugly, uncomfortable and nasty about a new medium will surely become its signature. CD distortion, the jitteriness of digital video, the crap sound of 8-bit - all of these will be cherished and emulated as soon as they can be avoided. It’s the sound of failure: so much modern art is the sound of things going out of control, of a medium pushing to its limits and breaking apart. The distorted guitar sound is the sound of something too loud for the medium supposed to carry it. The blues singer with the cracked voice is the sound of an emotional cry too powerful for the throat that releases it. The excitement of grainy film, of bleached-out black and white, is the excitement of witnessing events too momentous for the medium assigned to record them.” Both analog and digital technology have a lot to offer, and knowing when to use which paintbrush is the artist's craft.

  9. Q: What do you like most about your job?

  10. A: To begin with… everything.

  11. Q: What questions do you ask prospective clients?

  12. A: What is your vision for the project? Who do you want to hear this music, and how do you hope it moves them? What is the long-term trajectory for your music? Where do you want it to land?

  13. Q: What was your career path? How long have you been doing this?

  14. A: I started as a freelance musician in New York City while in college and for 10-odd years now I've made my living working for and collaborating with artists as a session musician, hired gun, and producer/MD. The high profile gigs are always fun, but frequently it's independent projects, full of heart, that are most fulfilling.

  15. Q: Can you share one music production tip?

  16. A: Don't be afraid to be patient and detailed in working on one element of a song. The breakneck pace of deadlines can make us rush and gloss over things that otherwise deserve our attention, but sometimes setting aside a session or a day to explore on moment can pay long-term dividends for the song as a whole.

  17. Q: What's your strongest skill?

  18. A: I've spent my life training myself how to listen: how to listen to the implicit sounds in artists' demos that they may not have the words to express; how to listen to other musicians and complement their playing with my own; how to listen to and identify the most powerful parts of a song and frame them in ways that makes them most impactful.

  19. Q: What do you bring to a song?

  20. A: Remember the scene in Apollo 13 when they dump the items on a table and say, "this is what we have to work with?" I'm able to look at a song and identify, "here's what's really working", "here's what needs to be fixed", and "here's something we can develop to maximize the impact of this song."

  21. Q: What other musicians or music production professionals inspire you?

  22. A: I take inspiration from creators with a broad holistic perspective of music, who fearlessly explore technology but are unafraid to human imperfections come into focus: artists such as Jon Brion, Meshell Ndegeocello, George Martin, Joni Mitchell, Quincy Jones.

  23. Q: Describe the most common type of work you do for your clients.

  24. A: I work alongside artists at every stage of the production process, from co-writing songs, to arranging and orchestrating, to planning and producing live recording sessions, to polishing and mixing songs in and and out of the box.

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New Releases (Pop & Rock)

I was the Producer, Cowriter in this production

GenresSounds Like
  • Jon Brion
  • T Bone Burnett
  • Meshell Ndegeocello
Gear Highlights
  • Vintage guitars
  • basses
  • keyboards and instruments from around the world: oud
  • mandolin
  • banjo
  • ukulele
  • cavaquinho
  • cuatro
  • psaltery
  • mandola
  • cümbüş
  • and more. || Pro Tools
  • Logic
  • Ableton
  • Sibelius
  • Finale
  • MainStage
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