Hi, I'm Miclain!

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Interview with Miclain Keith

Tell us about a project you worked on you are especially proud of and why. What was your role?
I'm especially proud of whatever project I just finished because every one is better than the one before it.
What are you working on at the moment?
A full length album from an up and coming indie electronic band, an EP of music meant for sleeping to, and hip hop singles.
Is there anyone on SoundBetter you know and would recommend to your clients?
Dee Blume!
Analog or digital and why?
Both have their place in engineering. I find I can get a good sound faster on analog equipment than I can on digital, but I can really manipulate and bend audio with digital equipment. It just depends how much I want to alter the source audio and what the client wants out of their production. I usually end up using a combination of both on everything.
What's your 'promise' to your clients?
That you'll end up with a song you love listening to and a song that you feel proud showing the world.
What do you like most about your job?
Being able to record and write music that I enjoy listening to.
What questions do customers most commonly ask you? What's your answer?
Q:How much does it cost? A: Depends on what you want out of the project
What's the biggest misconception about what you do?
There's not so many misconceptions as there is total ignorance of what an engineer really does.
What questions do you ask prospective clients?
What type of music do you want to record? do you have any artist you like the sounds of? What instruments do you want to record? How can I help make what you hear in your head come out of the speakers?
What advice do you have for a customer looking to hire a provider like you?
Hire me. You won't regret it.
If you were on a desert island and could take just 5 pieces of gear, what would they be?
Probably my Ensoniq esq-1, my custom Jaguar, Apollo interface, some Beyerdynamic DT 770's and a laptop to record.
What was your career path? How long have you been doing this?
I started playing guitar at 10 years old then quickly joined all the music programs after like orchestra, concert band, marching band, jazz band, chorus, and then transferred to magnet school for classical guitar and theory study. at 13 I begged my dad to get me an 8 track recorder and he did, and ever since then I've just been recording and making music non stop.
How would you describe your style?
My style is whatever the project calls for. Could be heavy trap/hip hop you'd hear in a basement in someone's house party or sweeping orchestral for the big screen and anything in between.
Which artist would you like to work with and why?
There's so many I have to give a general answer: any artist willing to do things differently and not follow the musical norms.
Can you share one music production tip?
Find what the other guys aren't doing and do it. Even if it sounds bad, at least you know. But you might find something amazing.
What type of music do you usually work on?
Mainly I've been doing a ton of hip hop, trap, urban, and electronic indie rock because that's what people have come to know me for recently. I also usually work on film composition and cinematic sound design.
What's your strongest skill?
Probably composition/writing in general, and finding new sounds through experimentation, and unifying sounds together.
What do you bring to a song?
Willingness to try anything to get the perfect sound.
What's your typical work process?
When starting a new production I usually move chronologically in the song and mix, write, and produce as I move through a song. Really though, I change how I work for every client because it's always a unique experience with different needs based on what the client wants.
Tell us about your studio setup.
I work out of a studio that is a total pro setup with SSL, Neve, Avalon, DTC, etc. channel strips, SPL Mixdream, Protools HD system, Universal Audio converters and custom treated control room and live room. I also have a home setup with Focusrite converters, full range sceptre monitors and sub as well as a host of analog synths from Ensoniq, Roland, Etc.
What other musicians or music production professionals inspire you?
Hans Zimmer, On Gaud, James Blake, Anthony Tiffith, A$AP Mob, Mick Jenkins, Olivver the Kid, Jack Garratt, and generally anyone doing something unique and different.
Describe the most common type of work you do for your clients.
Most commonly I get hired for is composition, production, mixing, and mastering. Mainly film/cinematic sounding music, indie rock, R&B, progressive hip hop, and EDM/Trap.