I'm a professional singer/songwriter/topliner with over a decade of experience. I sing, write, record and produce in a variety of genres including pop, singer-songwriter, folk and R&B. I deliver high-quality, professionally recorded vocals that will take your tune to the next level.
When reaching out, please provide the following:
A brief (description /guide of what you would like)
A downloadable link to your track
Reference tracks are helpful/ HIGHLY encouraged
1. Vocal Tuning
2. Vocal Comping
3. Singer: I deliver high-quality, dry vocal stems (lead vocals + 1 backing vocal)
4. Songwriter- Lyrics: I deliver a high-quality demo of your song
5. Songwriter- Music: I deliver a high-quality demo of your song
6. Top line writer: I deliver high-quality, dry vocal stems (lead vocal + full backing vocal arrangement)
4-5: Arrangement includes unlimited choruses + up to 3 verses + 1 hook or bridge.
3,6: All vocals are professionally recorded, edited and tuned
1-6: Songs up to 5-minutes in length
*Vocal tuning: all tuning is performed using Melodyne
ADD-ON OPTIONS & PRICING: vary by project and service (to be negotiated)
Terms and Conditions:
a. Music/ melody writing: I retain 50% of publishing splits, unless (d)
b. Lyrics writing: I retain 25% of publishing splits, unless (d)
c. Topline: I retain 50% of Master and 50% of Publishing, unless (d)
d. Splits Buyout- to be negotiated
e. No featured releases without permission
Contact me through the green button above and let's get to work.
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Interview with Joy Phillips
Q: Tell us about your studio setup.
A: Mac-based system featuring: Analog tube mastering Com, full plugin suites (Waves, Slate Digital, Komplete, Soundtoys, Kush, Plugin Alliance), monitors (YS 1's, NS 10's, Paradigm, Mackie's), Melodyne, Logic Pro X
Q: What's the biggest misconception about what you do?
A: People think that my job is fun and easy, but it actually takes a lot of skill and hard work. Especially for singers like myself, who write, record and produce. For example, I offer vocal tuning as one of my services. Being able to skillfully use Melodyne to tune vocals is no joke. It takes a lot knowledge and experience (and a good ear!) to do it well. You need a bunch of tools like this in your toolkit in order to thrive in the music industry today. I am constantly learning and working at building my skillset so that I can deliver high-quality, professional sounding recordings to my clients. Being a great singer is really only the starting point.
Q: What questions do you ask prospective clients?
A: I always ask my clients what artists/ style they would like to emulate or are inspired by. If possible, I get them to provide at least one reference track. I find this to be a good starting point because it ensures that I know what my target is. From there, I can tell if I'm the right singer for the job. I also ask my clients to tell me what they don't like! This can be just as important. For example, breathy vocals are totally trending these days (think Billie Eilish). A while back, I was writing and recording a song for a client and sang my verses in a sweet, breathy voice that I thought sounded fab. Unfortunately, the client didn't agree-- it turned out she hated breathy vocals! She asked me to re-sing the song. This could have been avoided if I had simply asked her about what styles/ singers she did not like. Now, I probe quite a bit at the beginning of a collaboration to make sure I understand the client's vision. When working on a project, I leave my ego at the door, always working to make the client happy by meeting (and exceeding) their expectations.
Q: What advice do you have for a customer looking to hire a provider like you?
A: Being really clear about what sound and or style you're going for. Don't be afraid to lay it all out and be direct. The more information you provide early the better! This way, your singer/ topliner/ producer can deliver exactly what you're after. Providing reference tracks is always a great idea.
Q: If you were on a desert island and could take just 5 pieces of gear, what would they be?
A: I love this question. Okay. I would take my laptop (equipped with logic of course), and interface, XLR cable, SM7 microphone, and...my husband? Does he count? If so, perfect! My husband is a really talented musician and engineer. We often collaborate together. What I love about being a singer/ songwriter is that I am constantly collaborating with others. I really can't imagine creating music alone on a desert island day after day. It would be terribly boring and lonely. That said, if I couldn't take my husband, I would definitely take my Taylor acoustic guitar!
Q: What was your career path? How long have you been doing this?
A: I started out in the musical theatre world as an actor-singer-dancer. I did this for a few years and realized that music was my true passion. I started taking guitar lessons with this amazing guitarist who new a lot about the industry. This was the beginning of my career path into singing/ songwriting. Around this time, I also started working as a show booker and live sound tech at a busy music venue in Toronto. This segued into learning more about sound engineering and producing. I've been performing, writing and recording for over 10 years. I love doing it all. Not only do I get to sing and perform, but also I have the ability to make songs come to life in the studio. I'm constantly learning and aiming to keep my skills current and on-point. I'm fortunate to have had so many wonderful mentors and teachers over the years.
Q: How would you describe your style?
A: At heart, my style is definitely 'soulful singer-songwriter'. I love acoustic guitar and songs that are nostalgic, beautiful, and make you want to cry-- I'm such a softie! That said, I enjoy writing, producing and performing in a variety of genres. Recently, I wrote and produced for this really great country album. I'm also in a blues-rock band where I get to just rock out and feel like a badass. I'd say my style is pretty versatile.
Q: Which artist would you like to work with and why?
A: I would work with Taylor Swift. She's such a talented and versatile songwriter. I would love to co-write with her and see what her process is like.
Q: Can you share one music production tip?
A: Never cut corners when capturing and editing vocals! Vocals are the icing on your musical cake; they will make your song come together and sound amazing. Without stunning (and tuned) vocals, your song will fall flat, even if the songwriting and production is amazing. Make sure your vocals sound PERFECT! When working with artists, I often ask them to sing the same lines over and over again until they sound just right. This always pays off in the end, as the final product sounds slick and professional.
Q: What's your strongest skill?
A: I'm definitely a jack-of-all trades kind of artist. I have solid skills in singing, guitar playing, producing and engineering.
Q: What do you bring to a song?
A: I bring a ton of vocal dynamics to a song! I have a wide vocal range and I like to use it. I can sing high, low, soft and I belt. I exploit this in my performances to keep the listener engaged. I have a pretty and pure sounding voice, so my natural style is singer-songwriter and pop. That said, I can nail a wide range of styles and love getting into character/ being playful in my writing and vocal delivery.
Q: Tell us about a project you worked on you are especially proud of and why. What was your role?
A: One project that I'm especially proud of is a record that I recently worked on for a country band called Jacquelyn Tober & the Rose County Ramblers. I liked wearing so many hats throughout the project. I got to write and co-produced, which was an amazing experience. I also junior engineered some of the tracks, which is a newer experience for me that I found challenging but also extremely rewarding. I'm proud of how amazing the album turned out, and just as importantly, with how happy the client was with the final product.
Q: What are you working on at the moment?
A: Currently, I'm working on releasing an album. It's for a really great rock band that I'm in called Mr & Mrs. I co-wrote, and produced the tunes on this album. As they say, a record is never finished, only abandoned. It's a great feeling releasing your work into the world.
Q: Is there anyone on SoundBetter you know and would recommend to your clients?
A: Michael at Annex Audio is one of the best engineers out there! He's a pleasure to work with, has great prices and delivers killer-sounding work. This is where I always send clients who are seeking mixing and mastering services.
Q: Analog or digital and why?
A: Digital recording. Hands down. Okay, I admit, analog recordings sound super warm and yummy! You just don't get this quality with digital recording. BUT, as a pop producer, I would find analogue recording expensive and quite limiting. Recent advancements in digital recording has leveled the playing field in the music industry. Now, independent artists and producers can produce their own material without relying on big record labels and insanely expensive studio facilities. I mean spending a ton of dough on gear doesn't hurt, but you can do so much now with just a laptop, interface and decent microphone. I love combing through sound libraries searching for that perfect loop or sound effect to incorporate into a song. The possibilities afforded by digital recording are endless. You have so much power at your fingertips. As an artist and creator, I find this really exciting.
Q: What's your 'promise' to your clients?
A: I promise to work closely with the client to ensure that I deliver a high-quality product that meets their expectations and fulfills their vision.
Q: What do you like most about your job?
A: I like how versatile my work is. One day, I'm singing vocals on a pop tune and the next day, I'm writing a country song for another artist. I get to work with clients from a wide variety of backgrounds. The breadth of my work inspires and challenges me. This is why I love it.
Q: What questions do customers most commonly ask you? What's your answer?
A: Most often I get questions about how the final product will be delivered. When toplining, producers want to know that I can deliver high-quality vocal stems. To answer such questions, I let me clients know that my vocals are recorded in a professional studio using top-of-the line gear. I edit and tune (using Melodyne) then bounce them out as dry, 24-bit, 48K wav. files.
Q: What type of music do you usually work on?
A: I work in a number of genres including singer-songwriter, country, pop and rock.
Q: What's your typical work process?
A: Before starting, I like to get a solid grasp on what the client wants. I highly encourage the use of reference tracks and I make sure that I know what sound the client is going for. After this is established, I send a preliminary track to the client giving them an idea of the direction I'm going (rough-take vocals that capture the hook and main idea). Once this is approved, I go ahead and finish the vocal production (all lead vocals + backing vocals etc.). At this point the client can request their first revision. After this, a final product is delivered with full vocal tuning and editing. At this stage, I offer another revision to ensure the client is getting everything they need from the performance.
Q: What other musicians or music production professionals inspire you?
A: I'm really inspired by Adele and Amy winehouse. I love how both of these Artists' styles are infused with a timeless, soulful, yet jazzy sensibility. As a singer that started out in the musical theatre world, this classic sound really inspires me.
Q: Describe the most common type of work you do for your clients.
A: Generally, I do topline vocals, songwriting and production for my clients. I also do vocal editing and tuning.