What was your career path? How long have you been doing this?
I started on this path in 2007 when I joined A Cursive Memory, a Pop band. I gained some studio experience and toured for about 4 years. During this time I also started recording projects with several other musicians. I learned the most about production and tracking when we recorded A Cursive Memory's 2010 LP, Let Love In. I had the pleasure to watch and learn from Producer Matt Mahaffey. He is a talented drummer, among other things, so I found his advice very helpful. Since then, I have been working on my own projects and tracking for-hire with indie rock bands in Los Angeles.
How would you describe your style?
Deep pocket/funk/rock. I aim for my drum parts to accompany the song in every way possible AND be able stand by themselves, sounding good even if no instruments were to be added.
What type of music do you usually work on?
Experimental Rock, which dabbles in many genres. Most of the projects I have been a part of have had a bit of an indie, punk, and/or R&B vibe. I have also tracked for a few Americana tunes.
What's your strongest skill?
Creating and holding down the groove. "Feel" and "vibe" are important concepts to me. If you spend too much time focusing on technical abilities for "radical" fills, you will miss these, arguably most important, aspects of the song.
What's your typical work process?
I listen to the track several times over to see what I hear in it, initially. Next, I'll talk to the writer about the vibe he/she aims for, so as to get on the same page. I record my parts right away and sleep on it. I come back with fresh ears a day or two later and change the parts if they need changing. I, then, send the track over and await notes from the artist.
What do you like most about your job?
Meeting good people who happen to be good musicians.
What's the biggest misconception about what you do?
Some songwriters believe drummers are interchangeable. If you give the same track and instructions to two different drummers and they both give you the same tone and feel, fire both of them. Drum machines are much cheaper.
Which artist would you like to work with and why?
ALIVE: Frank Black, Rufus Wainwright, D'angelo, Unknown Mortal Orchestra, Tame Impala, Radiohead, Soulive,
Jeff Buckley: his vibe lends itself to very creative percussion parts. Grace still plays a big role in my development of rhythmic sensibilities....
David Bowie: I am absolutely in love with the grooves and the drummers approach on Blackstar...
The Clash... Can.
What other musicians or music production professionals inspire you?
Jaki Liebezeit (Can), Carla Azar (Autolux), Levon Helm (The Band), Quest Love (D'angelo, The Roots), Tomas Haake (Meshuggah), Richard Mazzotta (Mewithoutyou), John Blackwell (Prince).
Describe the most common type of work you do for your clients.
Drum recording service through email. I take to the studio after discussing aspects of the song with the songwriter, so as to get on the same page and vibe in order to deliver the best possible outcome.
If you want to have a Live-Band recording instead of one by one tracking, I will travel to a studio of your choice, as I have done in the past.
For some of the projects I work with locally, I tend to end up playing live with them around town.
What do you bring to a song?
A unique groove that adds to the song's atmosphere and feel.