Tell us about a project you worked on you are especially proud of and why. What was your role?
Saints and Sinners by Matt Maher. The record was a lot of fun to play, and the whole tracking process pushed me further than any other project I've done.
What advice do you have for a customer looking to hire a provider like you?
Be honest with me. There's no way for me to help you get what you need if we're not honest every step of the way.
Analog or digital and why?
Analog...in a perfect world. There's a certain warmth, uniqueness, and commitment that comes with analog. Each handmade pre will sound unique to itself. Mostly, unlike digital, you have to make a musical decision and commit to it on the spot. That does something to your mentality while playing.
What's your 'promise' to your clients?
I will go the extra mile every time to get a track worth printing forever.
What do you like most about your job?
People. I like meeting and working with people. Those relationships are at the base of every musical experience I've had.
What questions do customers most commonly ask you? What's your answer?
Is it ok for me to ask you to try this idea? My answer is always yes...unless you're wanting double bass under an Adele song. That, I cannot do.
What questions do you ask prospective clients?
Who are you listening to? How can I help you best? What moves you musically?
If you were on a desert island and could take just 5 pieces of gear, what would they be?
Acoustic guitar, my vintage Slingerland kick drum, Istanbul Agop 15" medium hats, any black beauty snare, and drum sticks.
What was your career path? How long have you been doing this?
Art has always been a passion. It started leading me on a path to Industrial Design (designing anything from cars to cell phones), but music took over. Music can do that. It's powerful enough to make a man want to walk away from everything to pursue it with his life. At least, that was my case. I've been living in Nashville now for 10 yrs., and I was able to call music my sole profession starting 6 years ago!
Which artist would you like to work with and why?
I mean, who wouldn't want to work with Sir Paul McCartney?! I'm sure it would be a great experience to work with someone who makes such great music without even breaking a sweat. There's no doubt I would leave that gig beyond inspired and full of knowledge I would never have otherwise.
Can you share one music production tip?
If it doesn't make an impact, consider the impact of removing it from the song. Example: if compression doesn't make the texture better, don't use it for the sake of using it.
What type of music do you usually work on?
Living in Nashville, I mostly work on country, CCM/Worship, and a little rock mixed in. When that isn't going on, I write music for licensing to different media formats.
What's your strongest skill?
Tambourine. Definitely the tambourine.
What do you bring to a song?
I'm a guy who will take pocket over flash any day. BUT, I do love the chance to use some chops. Actually, the most important thing to me is to find a "musical home" in the song to drive the melody while keeping it the focus of the song. Basically, my biggest desire is to serve a song by playing exactly what's needed.
What's your typical work process?
I like to start out listening to the song with the artist's input in mind. Once I feel I have a good understanding of the direction the artist wants to take, I will start laying down some ideas to try and get into the creative space of the song. From there, I send a raw 2 mix to the artist to make sure they're getting what they want. Before sending final iso tracks, I always make sure to edit the audio to fix any minor issues.
Tell us about your studio setup.
I'm in a somewhat small 3 room studio, but luckily there's a shelf for all the drums! All A/D conversion is done through Apollo converters, and there's plenty of hardware and mics to go around. My favorite part is being setup to record/use acoustic AND electronic drums!
What other musicians or music production professionals inspire you?
Steve Jordan, Dan Needham, and Bonham are among my top drumming influences (Gadd is kind of a given). Lately I've been real into the things Ash Soan is doing. Daniel Lanois and Jay Joyce are always on my go to list for listening.
Describe the most common type of work you do for your clients.
The things I get called for the most are tracking the drums and creative perc parts. Everything from country (and demos) to rock, CCM, Indie, and pop. I can't get enough of any of it!