Tell us about a project you worked on you are especially proud of and why. What was your role?
The first Corneille album "Parcequ'on vient de loin" was significant because french R&B didn't really exist at the time (early 2000)and we had no money to do it. But it went on to be hugely successful, started my career and opened the doors for other french urban artist to do their thing. I was co-composer and producer of the album
What are you working on at the moment?
we re working on 5 different new artist, some signed some unsigned
Is there anyone on SoundBetter you know and would recommend to your clients?
I know Manny Maroquin, incredible mix engineer, learned a lot from him
Analog or digital and why?
analog instruments, digital recording/mixing. getting the right source and performance is key, so is efficiency and speed of workflow
What's your 'promise' to your clients?
we'll figure out what they need, hire a team for them, give them options and bring the project across the finish line on time and in budget with excellent communication along the way
What do you like most about your job?
seeing a project come together and bringing it to completion and the joy that brings to everyone involved
What questions do customers most commonly ask you? What's your answer?
what piece of gear I used for X, answer: my ears (mostly because I don't remember, I get in a bit of a trance when working and I reach for whatever is needed but it comes from the sound in my head first
What's the biggest misconception about what you do?
that everything can be fixed, i can't fix a bad performance or lack of emotion in the delivery. I can make what s there better but if theres nothing to begin with...
What questions do you ask prospective clients?
where do they see themselves at the end of the process and what do they love not what they think the market wants
What advice do you have for a customer looking to hire a provider like you?
put all egos aside and know that great projects have a team around them
If you were on a desert island and could take just 5 pieces of gear, what would they be?
besides the obvious computer a Linndrum, OBXA, a P-bass, an acoustic martin steel guitar and a strat
What was your career path? How long have you been doing this?
Sonny has been doing this for over 15 years, the other guys anywhere from 1-10 years
How would you describe your style?
its mostly pop with a strong emphasis on groove, it has R&B and funk influences, but some of our guys are from the underground electronic scene so they bring that flavour, we have a metal head, a gospel dude so everyone brings a different perspective
Which artist would you like to work with and why?
we love unique voices and we just got the chance to work with Cyndi Lauper so that was a dream come true, so any strong personality vocalists we're all in
Can you share one music production tip?
when doubling parts change the sound and voicing slightly, it makes things sound bigger
What type of music do you usually work on?
pop, urban, electronic
What's your strongest skill?
seeing and coming up with the final result/sound/vison
What do you bring to a song?
we bring an outside perspective and are able to identify what works, what doesn't and how to fix it
What's your typical work process?
we have a songwriting camp approach. Sonny will cast a bunch of songwriter, producers and musicians for a specific projects and have them come up with the maximum amount of ideas which he will then curate and help shape and old into a final product
Tell us about your studio setup.
all our collaborators have their wn setup with represents therm (our guitarists have lots of guitars and vintage amps, our programmers have cool synths and fx etc) HQ is a home where a number of rooms are converted into writing/producing stations. The biggest room has lots of hardware equipment and acoustic treatment for mixing purposes.
What other musicians or music production professionals inspire you?
Prince, Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis, Babyface, Timbaland, Pharrell Williams, Max Martin and Wolf Cousins crew, Ryan Tedder, Greg Kurstin, Quincy jones...
Describe the most common type of work you do for your clients.
we're mostly a one stop shop where client are looking for either new songs or to finish the songs that they have, so it goes from the songwriting, arrangements, crafting the sound and help defining the vision of a project all the way to mixing and mastering.