Stimulating, invigorating, soothing, relaxing, motivating, inspiring are but a few words fans use to describe their experiences when listening to the music of Michael Houston. My promise to you: I will listen...push you to explore new areas of your potential...deliver an exceptional finished product in a timely manner.
WHO I AM:
Seasoned Midwest based music producer, songwriter, and musician whose creativity is on the cutting edge of today’s music scene. I have produced/arranged and have been involved with many high profile artists including Vanessa Bell Armstrong, Fred Hammond, Kieth Staten, Deitrick Haddon, Vickie Winans, Phil Perry and many others. Projects include Indiana Pacers Theme Song (NBA), Circle Centre Mall (The Simon Group) in downtown Indianapolis, JD Byrider Automotive, Meijer Stores and many TV and radio spots. The late famed producer, Skip Scarborough (Earth, Wind and Fire, ConFunkShun, Anita Baker, The BodyGuard Soundtrack etc.), had also sought out his original and exceptional sounds.
WHAT I DO:
I love to deliver exactly what my clients desire! I bring a fresh honest perspective to each song I work on. I have over 30 years of professional involvement which affords me with a wide panorama of perspective.I am an advocate for originality. While working with vocalist Phil Perry (George Duke, Will Downing, Bill Withers, Barbara Streisand), he once shared with me that while he is working on his projects he would refuse to listen to the radio. This would insure that his music was an honest representation of himself and not a copy of whatever was "trending" at the moment. Most of the "classic artists" have one thing in common... originality!
Have inqiuiries? Contact Me!
Contact me through the green button above and let's get to work.
2 ReviewsEndorse Michael Houston/ MH Music
Call Michael Houston.
Let him wrap his big musical brain around your project and make it great.
I have never been less than 100% happy with work the Michael has done for me - writing collaborations, tracking, and mixing on commercial music projects.
But most of all I am blown away by his artist production. Technically speaking he is top notch. Award winning audio quality. Creatively speaking he is a master of groove and feel. His bass playing is rivaled only by his incredible keyboard playing. His arrangement chops are sublime.
Michael is a consummate professional.
I have worked with Michael Houston professionally for many years now on different musical projects. It is always a pleasure to work with Michael. He is kind, intuitive, attentive and amazingly talented. He can take your musical vision and bring it to life. If you need a collaborator with production, vocal producing or editing, programming, mixing, composition or a smoking bass or piano riff, Michael Houston can do it! You won’t be disappointed! He brings the inspiration.
VP | Composer | Producer
Clients: Coca Cola, McDonald's, Discovery Channel, HersheyPark
Interview with Michael Houston/ MH Music
Q: Analog or digital and why?
A: I grew up in the Analog era. I love the musicality and forgiving quality that console/ tape machine gave us. Also, because of the technical processes needed to function, there were many "labors of love" that touched the record. From the guy that calibrated the tape machine to the coffee guy! I feel we are missing the "community" in the creation of current music today.
Q: What's your 'promise' to your clients?
A: That they will be 100% happy with the finished product!
Q: What do you like most about your job?
A: I really don't consider this as a job. It is a passion for me. If you love what you do, you won't work a day in your life!
Q: What questions do you ask prospective clients?
A: Who are your influences? What are your convictions? What inspires you musically? Do you have any music you have already recorded?
Q: What advice do you have for a customer looking to hire a provider like you?
A: As an Artist, it is essential to know how to articulate what you are looking for. One of the biggest barriers that I have faced while working with artists is when they do not know what they want as well as how to articulate what they do want. Listen to as much music as you can. Don't copy but add to your musical vocabulary.
Q: If you were on a desert island and could take just 5 pieces of gear, what would they be?
A: My laptop, UAD Arrow Interface, MPC Live, midi controller and my Beyer Dynamic DT 770 headphones.
Q: What was your career path? How long have you been doing this?
A: By the age of twenty-two, my passion for music moved me to design and build a recording facility in Chicago, IL, which I owned and operated, as the chief producer/ engineer. It was this experience that opens the door to produce and record several local acts that advanced on to major record labels. One night, at a downtown Chicago Music Convention, I caught the attention of the oldest black owned record label’s CEO, Dr. Leonard Scott (Tyscot Records). At that time, I had a distribution/ label deal in which I released three to four albums per year, through Tyscot Distribution. This eventually opened the door for a lasting relationship and relocation to Indianapolis In, where I was appointed as A & R Director and Staff Producer. Since the beginning of that deal, I have produced over 60 albums and has also been a key factor in the signing and development of many of the industry’s leading artists. While working in Indianapolis, I crossed paths with and executive of Ripple FX (one of the major commercial production companies in Indianapolis) who said he had stopped in because he was impressed with the sound he was hearing. From there things started snowballing. I was blessed to be involved with many high profile projects including the theme song for the Indiana Pacers Basketball Team, Circle Centre Mall (The Simon Group) in downtown Indianapolis, JD Byrider Automotive, Meijer Stores and many TV and radio spots.
Q: How would you describe your style?
A: Stimulating, invigorating, soothing, relaxing, motivating, inspiring are but a few words listeners use to describe their experiences when listening my music.
Q: Can you share one music production tip?
A: Yes I can.... learn how to listen. lol!
Q: What type of music do you usually work on?
A: Soul, Neo Soul, Jazz and Contemporary Gospel and inspirational.
Q: What's your strongest skill?
A: My strongest skill is listening. Everything starts from there.
Q: What do you bring to a song?
A: I bring a fresh honest perspective to each song I work on. I have over 30 years of professional involvement which affords me with a wide panorama of perspective. Im not a huge fan of copying the current style. While working with vocalist Phil Perry (George Duke, Will Downing, Bill Withers, Barbara Streisand), he once shared with me that while he is working on his projects he would refuse to listen to the radio. This would insure that his music was an honest representation of himself and not a copy of whatever was "trending" at the moment. There is a fine line between being current and being a copy.
Q: What's your typical work process?
A: I strive to learn as much as I can about what each artist is hearing in their head before I begin any project. I will ask the Artist for audio references or examples of music that influences them. This gives me an idea of what their musical tastes are. I have done wonders with cell phone voice recordings of their song ideas. No professional demos are required.Along with the references, I listen for feel, emotion and conviction. This typically gives me all I need for the direction I should take.
Q: Tell us about your studio setup.
A: I use Studio One, Cubase as well as Pro Tools and Logic. My main interface is Universal Audio Apollo. I have an isolation booth that can be used for live drums, guitar or vocals. I have an extensive library of virtual instruments, and I love to combine programmed and live instruments when projects call for it. Because each artist has their own feel and vibe, whatever technology is needed to help them shine I try to provide.
Q: What other musicians or music production professionals inspire you?
A: I am inspired by many of the legendary Producers/ Musicians who have had a lasting influence on the music industry such as Maurice White, George Duke, Marcus Miller, Quincy Jones, Mark King (Level 42), David Foster, Nathan East, James Brown and many others. Their musical fingerprints are timeless!
Q: Describe the most common type of work you do for your clients.
A: My most common request is music production and progrmming. As many artists know exactly what they desire, there are just as many who need that extra unbiased perspective that can take their ideas to the next level! I love to collaborate with each artist and find where their strengths are. Im not interested in "my sound" It should be "their sound" that shines.