Mixing engineer and producer at Lemafi Music studio.
Hi! I'm Ahli from Lemafi Music studio. I offer services valuing the best interpretation of the essence of your music. I will be happy to help you achieve the excellence that your art deserves.
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Interview with Ahli
Q: Tell us about a project you worked on you are especially proud of and why. What was your role?
A: In that sense I cannot select a project. Each of the projects I participated in, since the first ones, built what I am today as a professional. Every mistake and success made me understand that the road is long and that we must constantly improve and place ourselves outside our comfort zone. I am happy and proud to realize at each new project my role as a producer or as a mixing engineer achieving the expected results and in each more recent case it shows itself bringing a new perspective to both sides, both of the artist and mine, in which we arrived at a construction in the music and in the relationship that surpasses what we were initially expecting, I feel in these cases that we managed to get to the right place of the music we are doing. It's like putting the last piece of the puzzle together and realizing it. I am grateful to build with the artist a song in which he visualized only in his mind, achieving this always makes me proud. In other words, it is a great gift when I realize that my performance in music production or audio has effectively contributed to making the artist proud.
Q: What are you working on at the moment?
A: Right now I have some projects around here that I'm betting on. I am starting a recording label in partnership and working on structuring it. I also work on the label projects on some of our pop artist's albums, projects by a popular music artist, an MC, a duet with an electronic, acoustic and experimental music vibe, and also on my own records as a producer-artist .
Q: Is there anyone on SoundBetter you know and would recommend to your clients?
A: Forgive me, but I'm new here. At the moment I would not be able to refer someone. However, I believe that answer may change soon.
Q: Analog or digital and why?
A: If possible both. I believe that each of them brings us a different texture, a different coloring, I do not believe that any one is better, they just meet different needs. And their use can also vary for each situation.
Q: What's your 'promise' to your clients?
A: Do my best and fulfill the role for which I was asked. Be true to what I feel about each project. And not allowing the ego to spoil the relationship.
Q: What do you like most about your job?
A: Make music. No doubt. Making art, being the bridge, the transmission tool between all these feelings and sensations. I believe that this is my way of improving our world.
Q: What questions do customers most commonly ask you? What's your answer?
A: This is another issue that depends a lot. It depends on the level of experience of each customer. Two interesting cases for example are customers who do not know much about recording and music in general and if they want to have questions to ask, this ends up being a process of introducing these customers to the processes that their music is involved in. What they are asking me for and what else they would need to get their job done satisfactorily. Other customers already have more experience and ask me more direct questions related to their own art, allowing me to give my opinion about the work and even contribute more actively with suggestions and changes. In general I get more common questions like values, hours, way of working, etc.
Q: What's the biggest misconception about what you do?
A: We know that the artist is great, he provides us with all the inspiration and fuel necessary to carry out our work, but the great misconception is to believe that the artist is alone in all these processes. All the processes that music goes through exist art and each professional involved participates in this process in the best way they can. From the moment you work with more people involved, that is, you act collectively, there is a little piece of each of those people in that. I say that the essence of each one of us also accompanies this art, this music, some professionals do not understand very well that making art, that making music is a joint construction, is a relationship. There are times when we demand and times when we must give in to this relationship so that it works very well. We must think about all the movements, all the actions that we do in the project and if these are really benefiting the music. Sometimes someone demands that we do something in the music that does not contribute to achieving the best result, so we must think "is this the best for music or am I just trying to impose my personal will and taste?". I believe that this is the biggest misconception, letting the ego spoil the professional confidence about everyone involved in the work and able to perform their role consistently. Not trusting the relationship is a big mistake.
Q: What questions do you ask prospective clients?
A: It depends a lot on customer to customer. The approach is different because each artist or band is unique, with a very peculiar work, the essence of each project is different in relation to each client. Of course, there is information necessary for the execution of any work, so I start from some points and as the conversation progresses we will deepen and align the expectations of our joint work. Points such as better understanding "who the client is", "what their needs are", "how I fit into this project to contribute in the best way" are good starting points for starting a new job.
Q: What advice do you have for a customer looking to hire a provider like you?
A: My advice is to do just that, check the information, feel that this is the right professional to deal with your art, your music, which we can say is your life. You want someone working on your music who believes in the potential of your art as much as you believe and who has the right quality and insight to achieve the results you seek.
Q: If you were on a desert island and could take just 5 pieces of gear, what would they be?
A: I loved the question! Maybe microphone, AD converter, mixing console, tape recorder, monitors.
Q: What was your career path? How long have you been doing this?
A: I've been going through art for some time. I started in Hip-Hop Culture through street dance, participated in crews, gave classes, and through it I had contact with Graffiti, DJing, MCing and thus strengthened my contact with Rap music. With this contact I learned to listen to other musical styles as I did before in my childhood and adolescence. Years later I started to have contact with producers and developed the taste for making music, I started as a beatmaker and went on studying as a self-taught person and applied what I studied in practice. I didn't stop studying and started recording, doing personal work and working with local artists. So I developed more in the audio besides continuing the informal studies and formal courses. I continued to invest in my service with the studio and also to go deeper into music production and audio. Today I continue to study, we always have something to learn, and improving my studio. I am also starting a new movement to expand the studio's clients and make my work better known beyond my region.
Q: How would you describe your style?
A: Well, my style, is the style that music needs to have. If I am working with a music of a specific genre it is important that I can bring the necessary characteristics of the style, this would be the starting point for the aesthetic direction of the project. Other factors are also involved, such as the dialogue with the artist or band and also the particularities of the material with which I am going to work. I like, whenever the project allows me, to print my personal style, my musical identity, bringing subtleties, softness, bass, pressure, details, always keeping in mind that music, in any of its aspects, should not be unbalanced.
Q: Which artist would you like to work with and why?
A: I admire the work of many artists and I particularly recognize that it is difficult to choose just one. I really like the work of artists who seem to feel that same connection with the music that I feel, that bridge between our feelings and something bigger than us, this relationship of dealing with music as a living organism and through our work being able shape it. I feel this in the work of artists and producers such as Pharrell Williams, Erykah Badu, Yasiin Bey. So I would love to work with them, for believing that they look and feel music as something that is telling us something and that sometimes we get it right.
Q: Can you share one music production tip?
A: Certainly. First, learn to listen. Listening is the initial and fundamental step on everything you will build in your music career and beyond. Listen to what the music needs. Listen to the band or the artist, listen to your team, your partners. Listening and dialoguing with people and art is one of the main pillars for a true career. Second, understand the basics of what you do. We know the complex world and its work needs well, but there is no evolution if there is no basis. Having a solid career means going step by step and dedicating yourself to each moment. Third, do not seek to be better than anyone other than yourself. Each has its own pace, and its development is gradual, but only its own. Try every day to do your best and overcome yourself. Being someone better than you were yesterday and projecting yourself to be even better in the future is the essential item for living a career and a full life. If you allow me to conclude, take care of your health, be kind to everyone around you regardless of who they are with you and always keep moving forward, regardless of what happens, one step at a time. Always with a lot of love and affection.
Q: What type of music do you usually work on?
A: I work with artists and bands of all styles of music that identify with my work process. Who like my way of feeling the music. Daily work with Hip-Hop, Trap, R&B, Pop.
Q: What's your strongest skill?
A: I couldn't say my strongest skill. I am always looking to do my best, in everything I am willing to do, in music and in my life. But in everything I do, I really like mixing, producing. I think that is where I establish a beautiful dialogue with art.
Q: What do you bring to a song?
A: If I understand the question well. I bring to the song what it needs, I always try to add value to the musical piece observing its contrast, its nuances, exposing the essence of the art initially sketched and optimizing every detail as if we were sculpting it. This is a joint process, in which the synergy of feeling what the music says and giving back to it becomes the fundamental element to keep this work as organic.
Q: What's your typical work process?
A: I start any project looking to know more about the artist/band that requested my work. I try to better understand your musical identity and the needs that must be met through a briefing. From that point on, my process may vary according to factors such as the type of service requested, the application of the result, the complexity of the project, among others. Within my workflow I try to observe and correct possible conflicting points or that can be improved and then I give my direction and interpretation of a project solution as my final result.
Q: Tell us about your studio setup.
A: I have a small studio in the city of Osasco, São Paulo, BR, where I develop and offer my services. I use equipment from PreSonus, Yamaha, Audio Technica, MXL, AKG as microphones, pre-amps, monitors, head phones, instruments, computers for the usual use. When the project needs it, I go to larger studios to ensure the best work for each case.
Q: What other musicians or music production professionals inspire you?
A: I feel grateful and inspired by the work of Quincy Jones, Michael Jackson, Pharrell Williams, Bob Power, Nando Costa Music, Russell Elevado, Lisciel Franco, Dr. Dre, Q-Tip, 9th Wonder, J Dilla, but this list is very much bigger and varied.
Q: Describe the most common type of work you do for your clients.
A: The most common service is mixing for most clients, but there are cases where they also request a service such as mastering, beatmaking, music production, etc.