What are you working on at the moment?
I'm working on a folk song and some strings for the upcoming game Diluvion by Arachnid Games. The score is by Michael Ward and is really epic and gorgeous. The folk song is by Taylor Hungerford and is going to be featured in the ending credits. I'm really excited that Mike brought me in for this!
Analog or digital and why?
Digital is clean and compact and easy to move around. Plus, if the sound/song needs analog I can push the digital through that after the fact.
What's your 'promise' to your clients?
Its impossible for me to not be passionate about what I do and so I will bring that to the project and work until you are happy with what you hear.
What do you like most about your job?
It's FUN to be creative
If you were on a desert island and could take just 5 pieces of gear, what would they be?
UAD Interface and every plugin ever, Mac Pro with 2jillion mb of everything, a crate of SM57s because I've got to have a good hammer too, I've been lusting after a pair of the Focal Twin6 Be so let's throw that in the mix, and fully built out live/mixing/mastering rooms
What was your career path? How long have you been doing this?
I started drumming when I was 9. Eventually that led me to Musicians Institute in 2001. From there I started playing around. I then landed a gig with Countless Thousands as their drummer. Around the same time I started to get into recoding drums for people. That has since morphed into me putting together my own studio with a friend and offering these services in a more public forum.
How would you describe your style?
Bold and Shameless
Which artist would you like to work with and why?
Them Crooked Vultures has three of the best rock and roll players ever, John Paul Jones on Bass, Josh Homme on Guitar, and Dave Grohl on Drums.
Can you share one music production tip?
performance and emotion are king
What type of music do you usually work on?
What's your strongest skill?
I'm very flexible with how an artist wants to work on a song and strive to make the experience an inspiring one so I can bring the best out of the artist.
What do you bring to a song?
I bring years of experience as a musician, a creative and technical set of ears for mixing, and a easy to work with attitude.
What's your typical work process?
I'll have the artist lay down a scratch track with vocals to a click. From there I'll work out a drum part and then we'll build the song a track at a time. Rhythm section 1st, guitars/keys/etc. next, then vocals, after that we'll add additional instruments until we have a track that is ready to mix.
Once the tracks are all recorded we start the mixing process. Typically, I'll run back through the midi information on the drum performance and select drum samples that sound good with the rough levels, from there I shape the sounds until it's all sitting together nicely. If the guitars are running through emulators I'll also cycle through options with the songwriter to get the guitar sound tuned in. I like the artist to hear the song at each mix point so that their vision is fulfilled. Because of this that input drives each part of the mix cycle until they are happy with what they hear.
Tell us about your studio setup.
I've got a UAD Apollo as my DAW interface. Once I get that signal in I'm 100% in the box. I'm monitoring through a pair of Yamaha HS50M speakers with an HS10W Sub. This is all running on a Mac pro with 32gb Ram and a Flash drive with a 3.7 GHz Quad-Core Intel Xeon E5 processor.
What other musicians or music production professionals inspire you?
Oh boy, this is just gonna be a giant list so I'll try to narrow it down to something more poignant. ////
Dave Pensado ~ for his amazing ability as a mixing engineer, his giving back to the community, and his humility Chris Lord-Alge ~ for being a constant reminder of the importance of bringing quick and confident with decisions
Andrew Scheps ~ for being a sound exceptionalist and not a gear exceptionalist and going in the box ////
Tony Williams ~ His drum work is at once beautifully musical and deeply percussive
Matt Chamberlain ~ He makes the drums sing like no other
John "Jabo" Starks ~ Funky as hell
Clyde Stubblefield ~ Funky as hell
John Bonham ~ His beats are cannon-shots that forever echo in the minds of drummers
Dave Grohl ~ I don't believe he ever hit a drum he wasn't trying to break in half
Ginger Baker ~ Cream to Fela Kuti, he was always a genius
Describe the most common type of work you do for your clients.
I've been drumming since I was 9 so that has been the bulk of what I do. However, in the last few years I've begun to engineer and mix tracks and am absolutely in love with that whole process.