What are you working on at the moment?
I am currently working with Andrew Lane (Hannah Montana, High School Musical, Keith Sweat, Mary J. Blidge, Toni Braxton) of Drew Right Music, on the debut album of his artist, "Simply Rayne"."Closa" by Angelina Cintron, San Antonio Spurs Zone Jingle, Bambu, Brandon Jinx, and Dom
Analog or digital and why?
Analog Front End for getting hardware and vocals into the computer, because analog seemingly adds a character on hardware vocal that can't be duplicated going straight in. Piano sounds always sound better coming from a hardware synth.
Digital for soft synths and mixing because of the flexibility and high sonic quality of plugins today. My productions sound like they were made in a multi-million dollar facility.
What's your 'promise' to your clients?
To give 1000% into their project, deliver something that is professional, high quality, and competitive. Your music should be able to be slid into rotation without anyone batting an eye. We take pride in giving you our best!
What do you like most about your job?
Being able to work with different people, helping them realize their dreams, and seeing them smile!
What questions do customers most commonly ask you? What's your answer?
How much do I charge? Starting at $2000
When do we pay you? I usually take it in 3 payments (After signing non-discloures, at time of recording, and when masters are delivered to the client). All monies must be paid in full to receive the final product.
Do you play and instrument or just "make beats"? I play piano, and sax as well as understand music theory
Can I take the unfinished draft/mix with me? No, not until it is finished and some type of plan is in place.
Do you have your own studio? Yes
Are you willing to travel to us? Yes, but will be added to expenses.
Do you use/have pro tools? Yes, I have Pro Tools, but I primarily work out of Sonar. I can provide broadcast Wave files or a Pro Tools session if needed.
Tell us about your studio setup.
I am running two computers networked through Vienna Ensemble. My primary DAW is Cakewalk Sonar Platinum (Been a user for over 20 years).
I get everything into the system via an analog signal chain and mix exclusively In the Box.
Hardware Synths: Roland Fantom-X (Fully Expanded), Roland Fantom-G, Roland JV2080(expanded), Yamaha Motif Rack ES
Soft Synths: Native Instruments Komplete, Maschine, Spectrasonincs Omnisphere 2.0, Electrax, Gladiator, Nemesis, Nexus, Spire, RealGuitar, Real Strat, Sylenth, Zebra, Cakewalk Zeta+, Rapture Pro, Alchemy, Synth Squad, Sampletank 3, Miroslav Philharmonik 2.0, ACE
Mics: Shure KSM44, AKG C214, Shure SM58, Rode NT1, CAD Trion 8000, M-Audio Sputnik, M-Audio Luna
Preamps & Compressors: Avalon 737, RNC Compressor
Front End and Monitoring: Lucid 9624 A/D Converters, M-Audio Delta 1010 (2), Nytek Patchbay, Mogami Cabling, Presonus Central Station, JBL LSR4326 w/ Sub
Plugins: Slate (VCC, VBC, VMR, VTM), Waves Gold, Waves SSL, UAD, Soundtoys, IK Multimedia, Fab Filter Pro-Q 2
What's the biggest misconception about what you do?
That it's easy, anyone can do it "if they have the gear", and you don't have to study.
What questions do you ask prospective clients?
What is your budget?
What genre of music do you identify with?
What is the primary area of focus for your music/career?
What topics, messages do you want to convey in your music?
What style of song are you wanting to create (Upbeat, Ballad, Club, Trap, Piano Only, etc.)
Who are your competitors?
What do you plan to do with the finish product?
What advice do you have for a customer looking to hire a provider like you?
Be professional in your approach,know what you want, and don't be afraid to ask questions. Music is a timely business, so be direct and concise with your communication.
Lend us your trust, and we will elevate your career.
If you were on a desert island and could take just 5 pieces of gear, what would they be?
Cakewalk Sonar Platinum, Roland JV2080, Avalon 737, AKG C214, and RNC Compressor
What was your career path? How long have you been doing this?
My career path was going to school, receiving my bachelors and masters degree all the while learning on my own how to compose, record, mix, and master music. I started in high school making "beats" using a Yamaha PSR220 Keyboard, Cakewalk Home Studio and a soundblaster card. I started playing piano and sax at church at the age of 15. When I got to college, I studied and saved up for a Roland XP-60. After that I got to work with Lakrea Clark, who was the number one unsigned artist (myspace.com) back in 2004. I worked on music for several MTV shows, as well as local artists. I then connected with Win Wilford (CBS Records, Jackson 5) and began doing a few demos for his artists. I also worked on records for an artist signed to Daryl "GI" Jackson from the multi-platinum group H-town's label. I currently am working with Andrew Lane o Drew Right (Hannah Montana, High School Musical, Keith Sweat, Mary J. Blige, Toni Braxton) on his artist, Simply Rayne's debut album.
How would you describe your style?
I would describe my still as futuristic, and melodic. Music that you can feel. When beat drops or the instruments come on it should feel epic and draw the listener in. I love pianos, arpeggiated sythns, and pads.
Which artist would you like to work with and why?
I would love to work with an on the caliber of Beyonce, Rihanna, Ariana Grande, or Lady Gaga. I love working with artist with powerful voices and the ability to be creative during the recording/songwriting process.
Can you share one music production tip?
Keep an open mind, some of the best things come from spontaneity, suggestions, and creative "accidents"
What type of music do you usually work on?
I typically workon R&B, Pop, and Gospel records and some Hip Hop/Rap
What's your strongest skill?
Taking a concept from my mind to mastering and succeeding. as well as the ability to come up with inspiring, meaningful, and competitive music.
What do you bring to a song?
Professionalism, Confidence, comfort, creativity, Out of the box thinking, Competitiveness, versatility (I play piano and sax), and the ability to adapt to any type of music and deliver.
What's your typical work process?
The typical work process involves meeting the artist/client for a short interview to get a better understanding of needs and requirements. After that, my team and I begin our process of researching the artist, their competitors, and the proposed genre to begin composing the music, writing the lyrics, and recording the demo. The demo includes the lead vocals, as well as background vocals. When we present the record to a client, we want it to sound like a finished product. We tailor each song to our client's needs.
Once we preview the song to the client and they approve, we get right into the recording process.Sometimes we get right into it in the studio, and sometimes the client may want to way a couple of days before recording.
We handle all vocal production with my co-writer and vocal producer, Thaddeus "T.A." Anwar. We also do all vocal editing, tuning, and timing as necessary to strengthen our product. We mix the music, and outsource all of our mastering.
We take our time, and demand perfection from our clients that we work with. We take pride in being able to give a high quality product.
What other musicians or music production professionals inspire you?
Rodney Jerkins, Max Martin, Timbaland, Babyface, Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis, Stargate, Noah "40" Shebib, Tim Kelly & Bob Robinson, Diane Warren, David Foster, Michael Jackson
Describe the most common type of work you do for your clients.
Full song production which includes: composition of the music, songwriting, vocal production, recording, mixing, and mastering. We are a production team focused on providing top quality, professional, and competitive songs to our clients.