Hi! I'm Nathan Butler, and I am pleased to meet you! I started playing drums in church at 13 years old, started my own metal band at 15, and also began helping run sound. That turned into a life-long passion that has resulted in over 2000 live performances, drumming on over 60 records, and mixing, mastering, and producing dozens of projects.
I love to mix! I have mixed everything from black metal to bluegrass, classical harp to industrial, hip-hop to americana. I feel my strength is to discover the vision and objectives of the artist, and work passionately at helping to achieve that result. I excel at creating a sense of space and depth, a tight, punchy low-end, a clear focus on vocals, and at letting the vibe and emotion of the song trump technical perfection. I also have a knack for getting great live recordings to come alive!
I also love to drum. I'm not the drummer for everybody, and I'll be honest if I don't think I am a good fit, but for most pop, rock and dance music, I can bring a lot to the table, and am tight enough to blend well with programmed music.
I can master your record as well, and have particular strengths (and the right tools) for hip-hop and EDM, as well as rock, pop and acoustic music.
I am also pretty handy at vocal tuning.
I'd love to hear about your project. Click the 'Contact' button above to get in touch.
Interview with Nathan Butler - Nimble Wit
Q: Describe the most common type of work you do for your clients.
A: Mixing and mastering. I have a weekly client that I mix a full live band for.
Q: What other musicians or music production professionals inspire you?
A: Daniel Lanois, T-Bone Burnett,
Q: Tell us about your studio setup.
A: A very simple, but effective mixing room
Q: What's your typical work process?
A: If I'm mixing - I pull the files into the session, hit play, and turn the faders up. I try to get a sense of where the song is going, and what is working about it. Then, I strip it back to a couple of key components, refine them, and then slowly add the rest of the pieces. If something stops working, I back up to the last time it was, and then add things back in until I get it.
Q: What do you bring to a song?
A: over 25 years of experience, knowing what a good mix sounds like through a large PA, and knowing how to translate that energy to the studio, and a broad knowledge of different genres to help bring fresh ideas.
Q: What's your strongest skill?
A: Getting the emotional read of the song and helping to translate/augment that.
Q: What type of music do you usually work on?
A: Americana, Pop, Hip-Hop, and Religious.
Q: Can you share one music production tip?
A: Pull someone into the room whose opinion you respect. Whatever you feel compelled to explain/rationalize/make excuses for - that's your subconscious telling you that you can do better - and where your work is lacking.
Q: Which artist would you like to work with and why?
A: Hmm... that's a long and overwhelming list.
Q: How would you describe your style?
A: Emotional, dramatic, and having a strong sense of place.
Q: What was your career path? How long have you been doing this?
A: Long, winding, uncomfortable, and financially difficult. I started my musical journey twenty-seven(ish) years ago.
Q: If you were on a desert island and could take just 5 pieces of gear, what would they be?
A: A good pair of headphones, an SM7 (mic), a laptop, my Gretsch guitar, and a Fender Princeton. Because if I'm on a desert island, I'm only going to be making my own music.
Q: What advice do you have for a customer looking to hire a provider like you?
A: Find someone who is approachable, listen their work, and find someone who is already getting the results you are looking for.
Q: What questions do you ask prospective clients?
A: Can you play to a metronome? Have you rehearsed your songs to the point where you can play them in your sleep? Are you looking for input?
Q: What's the biggest misconception about what you do?
A: That mixing and mastering are the same thing.