Tell us about a project you worked on you are especially proud of and why. What was your role?
I did an album last year with an Americana/folk indie band called Bridge 19. I co-produced with the band, engineered, helped develop guitar/bass parts, mixed, & mastered the project. A local independent radio named it their 14th favorite album on their top 100 albums of 2015.
What are you working on at the moment?
Have several local Louisville bands & artists I'm currently working with. Some of my favorites are Hunchback Whale and Straight Co.. I'm also working with a singer/songwriter from Florida named Craig Newman that I'm enjoying.
Analog or digital and why?
Both! They each have their advantages and disadvantages.
What's your 'promise' to your clients?
I promise to make the highest quality of work for less money than most. I always put an honest effort into every project regardless of the level of the artist. I'm always striving to produce major record label sounding projects.
What do you like most about your job?
I am a huge fan of music. I buy a lot of cd's and look every week at who might have a new album that I can buy to see what unfamiliar artist are sounding like. Working in music production allows me to come close to fulfilling my appetite for music. The more the better.
What's the biggest misconception about what you do?
That anyone with a computer can make recordings that sound professional.
What questions do you ask prospective clients?
Describe your music. What artists do you like? What do you want to sound like? What albums do you like the production on? What kind of instrument tones do you like?
If you were on a desert island and could take just 5 pieces of gear, what would they be?
Manley Var-MU Comp, Mojave' MA-200 mic, Pro Tools rig, Fender EJ Strat, Fuchs Blackjack MKII amp.
What was your career path? How long have you been doing this?
Started playing classical piano at age seven, took up guitar at age 10 which I am completely self taught, began writing and started playing music part time at age 20, had several cover band projects as well as original band projects, recorded my first album in 2000, started running sound for bands in 2002, and have been full-time in my studio since 2009.
How would you describe your style?
I try to adapt to the style of the artist I'm working with. I will research other artists within a certain style and get a vibe that will transfer to the project at hand.
Can you share one music production tip?
Nothing is more important than the song.
What type of music do you usually work on?
Being a commercial studio, I work on many genre's. Everything from rock, pop, Americana, country, gospel, indie folk, hip hop, etc.
What's your strongest skill?
Guitar playing but try to be well versed in many skills.
What do you bring to a song?
Song arrangement, composition, chord substitution, instrumentation as well as mixing & mastering.
What's your typical work process?
The work process varies depending on the project but I like to spend a far amount of time with the artist determining the style of music they are doing, what the artist wants to sound like, what kind of music they like, what kind of mixes they like, what kind of instrument sounds they like, and trying to understand the overall vision of the artist. With that information, we determine whether musicians will play/sing live together or separate, whether the song(s) will be recorded with or without a click track, etc. Once all of that is determined, I select instruments, tunings, microphones, pre's, and overall signal chains to develop sounds or tones. Once we're happy with sounds we start musicians playing/singing the song to warm up. Once everyone is at their best, start recording.
Tell us about your studio setup.
I have a well balanced hybrid studio utilizing analog outboard gear as well as the best in digital recording systems. A nice collection of microphones, mic pre's, compressors, analog console, and enough space to record a live band all in one room as well as an isolation room.
What other musicians or music production professionals inspire you?
I'm inspired by Guthrie Govan, Eric Johnson, and Tommy Emmanuel as guitar players. Chris Cornell & Jason Isbell as lyric writers. My production engineer influences vary dramatically such as Daft Punk, Steely Dan, Steven Wilson, mixers Tony Maserati, Chris Lorde Alge, Dave Pensado, etc.
Describe the most common type of work you do for your clients.
I provide everything from song composition assistance, chord substitution, guitar/bass/keyboard/mandolin tracks, drum programming (or provide a professional drummer), recording services, as well as mixing and mastering services.