Darren Rust

Record Producer, Mix Engineer

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6 Reviews (6 Verified)
Darren Rust on SoundBetter

Darren Rust is a 4-time Emmy Award winner, Dove award winner, and Grammy Certificate Award winner, and has been producing, recording, mixing & mastering for over 30 years!

Darren is one of the nations top vocal producers and mix engineers, excelling particularly in the contemporary a-cappella genre. He has produced many records for groups like Home Free, The Blenders, Go Fish, Naturally Seven, Peter Hollens, Eclipse 6, Voice Play, The Ball Brothers, and many more! Although he is most known for his productions in the vocal world, his credits are extremely diverse. Over the years, he has worked with such artist as Alabama, Kenny Rogers, Lonestar, Don McLean, Lee Greenwood, The Oak Ridge Boys, and has mixed recordings for Michael Buble', Quincy Jones, Donny Osmond, Cory Wong, Hunter Brothers and more! Darren is also a worthy Singer and Songwriter, and often sings on many of his artists recordings! Along with being an excellent mix engineer, Darren is also a mastering engineer, mastering for his artists and others alike!

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Credits

AllMusic verified credits for Darren Rust
  • Home Free
  • Home Free
  • Home Free
  • Jeff Cook
  • William Shatner
  • Jeff Cook
  • William Shatner
  • Naturally 7
  • Naturally 7
  • Home Free
  • Home Free
  • Home Free
  • Home Free
  • Home Free
  • Home Free
  • Home Free
  • Home Free
  • Home Free
  • Home Free
  • Maybebop
  • Kenny Rogers
  • Kenny Rogers
  • Kenny Rogers
  • Kenny Rogers
  • Kenny Rogers
  • Straight No Chaser
  • Home Free
  • Home Free
  • Home Free
  • Home Free
  • Naturally 7
  • Chapter 6
  • Home Free
  • The Blenders
  • The Blenders
  • The Blenders
  • The Blenders
  • The Blenders
  • The Blenders
  • Naturally 7
  • Naturally 7
  • Naturally 7
  • Naturally 7
  • Eclipse
  • Home Free
  • Quincy Jones
  • Quincy Jones
  • Naturally 7
  • Naturally 7
  • Naturally 7
  • Naturally 7
  • Naturally 7
  • Naturally 7
  • Home Free
  • Home Free
  • Home Free
  • Naturally 7
  • Steven C
  • Steven C
  • Go Fish
  • M-Pact
  • Go Fish
  • Go Fish
  • Go Fish
  • Go Fish
  • Go Fish
  • The Blenders
  • The Blenders
  • The Blenders
  • The Blenders
  • The Abdomen
  • The Abdomen
  • The Abdomen
  • Paula Lammers
  • Paula Lammers
  • Paula Lammers
  • The Blenders
  • The Blenders
  • The Abdomen
  • The Abdomen
  • The Abdomen
  • The Abdomen
  • The Abdomen
  • Tonic Sol-Fa
  • Casablanca Orchestra
  • Casablanca Orchestra
  • Casablanca Orchestra
  • St. Paul
  • St. Paul
  • The Blenders
  • The Blenders
  • The Blenders
  • Julia Wilde
  • Julia Wilde
  • Julia Wilde
  • Julia Wilde
  • Julia Wilde
  • Go Fish
  • Go Fish
  • Go Fish
  • Go Fish
  • Naturally 7
  • Naturally 7
  • Naturally 7
  • Naturally 7
  • Naturally 7
  • Go Fish
  • Elizabeth Keeney
  • Elizabeth Keeney
  • Go Fish
  • Go Fish
  • Go Fish
  • Eclipse
  • 7th Element
  • 7th Element
  • Moveable Feast
  • The Blenders
  • The Blenders
  • The Blenders
  • The Blenders
  • The Blenders
  • Naturally 7
  • Naturally 7
  • The Blenders
  • The Blenders
  • The Blenders
  • The Blenders
  • The Blenders
  • The Blenders
  • Tuck & Patti
  • The Blenders
  • The Blenders
  • The Blenders
  • The Blenders
  • The Steeles
  • The Blenders
  • The Blenders
  • The Blenders
  • The Blenders
  • The Blenders
  • The Blenders
  • The Blenders
  • The Blenders
  • The Blenders
  • The Blenders
  • The Blenders
  • The Blenders
  • The Blenders
  • The Blenders
  • The Blenders
  • The Blenders
  • The Blenders
  • The Blenders
  • The Blenders
  • Vocaluptuous
  • Vocaluptuous
  • Michael Booth
  • Clockwork
  • Go Fish
  • Go Fish
  • Go Fish
  • Go Fish
  • Go Fish
  • Go Fish
  • Go Fish
  • Go Fish
  • Go Fish
  • Go Fish
  • Go Fish
  • Go Fish
  • Go Fish
  • Praise-Apella
  • Praise-Apella
  • Praise-Apella
  • Jumaane Smith
  • Go Fish
  • Praise-Apella
  • Praise-Apella
  • Praise-Apella
  • Brigham Young University Vocal Point
  • BYU Noteworthy
  • ONAIR

6 Reviews - 2 Repeat Clients

Endorse Darren Rust
  1. Review by Rob C.
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    Working with Darren was a wonderful experience. He is truly an amazing producer who knows his stuff! Talking and creating with him were highlights of my year and I 100% recommend working with him to create your music. He helped turn Lauren's music into something that appeals to a wider audience and really cared about the lyrics authenticity to the story she was telling. Overall he is a genius producer and a even better person who I highly recommend working with.

  2. Review by Matt M.
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    I couldn't have picked a better person to help me through recording my song.

    With me being a complete novice, Darren completely guided me through the process and worked extensively with me until perfection was created!

    Thanks again Darren - I've recommended you before and will continue!

  3. Review by Dave A.
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    This was my second lesson on audio mixing from Darren. As with the first, his knowledge, expertise, and teaching style proved to be excellent! This will definitely enable me to build on what I've learned so far and make further improvements.

  4. Review by Dave A.
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    Darren is very knowledgeable and excellent at explaining detailed concepts. He used his PC based mixer to show both visually and audibly how his applied principles and experience made improvements to individual channels as well as the overall mix. Highly recommended!

  5. Review by Wilson C.
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    There is a reason Darren has won so many prestigious Awards - it is because of his commitment to EXCELLENCE. He brings 110% focus to Mixing, and 110% focus to Mastering. I'm looking forward to working with him again on many future Projects.

  6. Review by Wilson C.
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    In the over 15 years I have been creating Music, this is without a doubt the best Mastering I have ever received on one of my Songs.
    Phenomenal is an understatement! Outstanding is an understatement! I highly recommend Darren for your Mastering needs.

Interview with Darren Rust

  1. Q: Tell us about a project you worked on you are especially proud of and why. What was your role?

  2. A: I worked on a LIVE Christmas special for one of my biggest clients, Home Free, that I recorded and mixed. It included every song that I produced for the band and included guest artists like, The Oak Ridge Boys, Alabama, Kenny Rogers, Jeffrey West, and Rachel Wammack. I also had the opportunity to work with the legendary Don McLean on a remake of his classic song, "American Pie".

  3. Q: What are you working on at the moment?

  4. A: There are at least 2-3 projects always in the works!

  5. Q: Is there anyone on SoundBetter you know and would recommend to your clients?

  6. A: Not yet, but I'm sure I will!

  7. Q: Analog or digital and why?

  8. A: BOTH! They both have their virtues. I use them both and get a better result because of it!

  9. Q: What's your 'promise' to your clients?

  10. A: I promise to give them exactly what they ask for and that they are completely happy with the final outcome.

  11. Q: What do you like most about your job?

  12. A: It's creative, and it's always different! Plus, I am my own boss!

  13. Q: What questions do customers most commonly ask you? What's your answer?

  14. A: How do you do what you do? Can you teach me a few things? Answer: YES! I do an online, one-on-one course for folks who want to learn how to produce and mix!

  15. Q: What's the biggest misconception about what you do?

  16. A: I don't know. I'm pretty clear with my clients about what I'm going to give them.

  17. Q: What questions do you ask prospective clients?

  18. A: Who do you want to sound like? What do you plan to do with these recordings? Who is your target audience?

  19. Q: What advice do you have for a customer looking to hire a provider like you?

  20. A: If we're recording, know your music, as much as possible. Rehearse before you come to record, so we don't waste time. If I'm mixing for you, send me everything edited, as much as possible. If you send a Pro Tools sessions, only send me the tracks you want me to use in the mix. If I'm mastering for you, make sure you give me a version of your mix that has no peak limiting, so I have some headroom to work with.

  21. Q: If you were on a desert island and could take just 5 pieces of gear, what would they be?

  22. A: Pro Tools, Telefunken 251 mic, Neve 1073 preamp, TubeTech CL1b compressor, GML 8200 EQ.

  23. Q: What was your career path? How long have you been doing this?

  24. A: I spent 30+ years with a vocal pop group called, The Blenders. Since day one we were self produced, and made our own recordings. This is where my love of production began, and I became the groups producer and musical director. The sound of The Blenders became a selling point for my work, and it drove me to reach out and produce other acts.

  25. Q: How would you describe your style?

  26. A: I would say that I am a singers producer. I love all vocals, vocal melody and harmony. That is the life blood of a great song! Don't get me wrong, I love to mix the instrumentation... killer drum mix, big guitars, or a beautiful orchestration... but vocals is where it's at for me!

  27. Q: Which artist would you like to work with and why?

  28. A: I would have liked to work with The Beatles back in the day. Mostly, because of the raw creation that happened during that time. It was a time of making music together, in the same room, playing together at the same time. Trying new things, creating new sounds. Not being dictated by trends and fads. That would have been super fun!

  29. Q: Can you share one music production tip?

  30. A: To be a successful music producer, you must be a good servant. Take yourself and your ego out of the equation, and serve your client and their needs!

  31. Q: What type of music do you usually work on?

  32. A: A lot of country music, and vocal harmony music, like a-cappella.

  33. Q: What's your strongest skill?

  34. A: I would say editing and mixing is my strongest skill.

  35. Q: What do you bring to a song?

  36. A: I have a long history in vocal music. Melody is everything to me, and if a song is lacking in the melody department, I often give the artist new ideas to improve their melody. I also spent over 30 years in a vocal harmony group, so I often take that experience and use it to sing backup vocals. I also have a large network of top tier session players from Nashville and LA that I use in my productions. Mixing is also a specialty of mine. I like to think that I bring a world class mix to the table. It is so important to me that the mix hits the artist with impact, clarity, and excitement! In fact, many self-produced artists come to me for my mixes!

  37. Q: What's your typical work process?

  38. A: If I'm producing a project, the artist and I get together and hash out a demo with a scratch vocal. I then do some midi programming and send out rough mixes and stems to players, or bring players into the studio to record. Vocals are typically cut after the instrumentation is done. Editing and mixing are happening all through this process, but the final mix is then done. Reference mixes are sent out, and upon approval, I do mastering, or send out the mixes to an outside mastering engineer.

  39. Q: Tell us about your studio setup.

  40. A: I run a Pro Tools HDX studio running PT Ultimate along with analog summing for mixing. I use outboard analog processing for mixing as well as a wealth of the top plugins, including nearly everything from UAD. I utilize both Burl and Apogee AD/DA converters for the highest quality conversion. I use high end API, CAPI, NEVE, Great River preamps and EQs. I have many high-end outboard compressions, and a large mic collection as well. Telefunken, AKG, Neumann, Slate, Shure, Audio Technica, etc. I have a large control room, tracking room, and iso both that allows me to comfortably record a 4-5 piece session. The studio is a professionally designed and built room that sits just below my garage, and has a parking lot and a private entrance.

  41. Q: What other musicians or music production professionals inspire you?

  42. A: Randomly, off the top of my head...Quincy Jones, Prince, Bob Rock, Bruce Swedien, George Martin, Keith Urban, Blake Shelton, Garth Brooks, Dann Huff, Max Martin, Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis, Dr. Luke, Rick Rubin, Luke Combs, Dan & Shay, Take 6,

  43. Q: Describe the most common type of work you do for your clients.

  44. A: The majority of my projects are vocal recording and editing, mixing and mastering.

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One Last Song by The Blenders

I was the Writer, Producer, Recording Engineer, Mixer, & Singer in this production

Terms Of Service

Mixing - 1 revision at no charge, further revisions at hourly rate. Mastering - 1 revision at no charge, further revisions at hourly rate.

GenresSounds Like
  • Steve Lukather
Gear Highlights
  • Pro Tools Ultimate
  • Dangerous Music Summing
  • Burl B80 Mothership and Apogee Symphony Converters
  • API
  • Great River
  • Telefunken
  • AKG
More Photos