Throughout my 20 years of experience in creating music, I have worn many hats. From artist/vocalist to producer and engineer, I've created a style all my own that uniquely combines the skills from each creative corner I've touched along the way.
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Interview with Paul 'Parker' Irizarry
Q: Tell us about a project you worked on you are especially proud of and why. What was your role?
A: Project date and title TBD. But, I was brought by a client to another recording studio mid-way during our session at around 5am. The session was for an artist who had a record in 2017 that hit 7 on the Hot 100 chart. I was asked to make a beat on the spot. 15 minutes later both artists were recording to the beat I just made.
Q: What are you working on at the moment?
A: Things that have yet to be announced by labels that must go unmentioned...
Q: Is there anyone on SoundBetter you know and would recommend to your clients?
A: Rami Beats
Q: Analog or digital and why?
A: Digital. Convenience.
Q: What's your 'promise' to your clients?
A: To put 100% in especially since my name will be attached to your work as well.
Q: What do you like most about your job?
Q: What questions do customers most commonly ask you? What's your answer?
A: "Where's the restroom?" Out the door to the left
Q: What's the biggest misconception about what you do?
A: I don't know...too busy working.
Q: What questions do you ask prospective clients?
A: Do you have stems?
Q: What advice do you have for a customer looking to hire a provider like you?
A: Communicate! Provide examples from other music to help illustrate your vision.
Q: If you were on a desert island and could take just 5 pieces of gear, what would they be?
A: MacBook Pro, Glyph HD, UA Apollo Arrow, Neumann TLM-103, Telefunken AK-47
Q: What was your career path? How long have you been doing this?
A: Started as a fan memorizing my favorite artists' songs, and eventually became an MC/vocalist after noticing that I had a natural ear for tone and cadence. Began producing and got a manager who changed my life by telling me that my music was good, but the mixes were horrible. I seriously had never even considered mixing anything. That set me on the path to get better at mixing which became the cornerstone of my career. This was about 10 yrs ago.
Q: How would you describe your style?
A: Dynamic. I never approach any song the same.
Q: Which artist would you like to work with and why?
A: Everyone from seasoned vets to first timers. In each scenario I can learn and teach the artist.
Q: Can you share one music production tip?
A: Build a folder of your favorite drum samples so you don't have to waste time searching for them.
Q: What type of music do you usually work on?
A: All genres!
Q: What's your strongest skill?
Q: What do you bring to a song?
A: An unbiased, seasoned ear.
Q: What's your typical work process?
A: Setting the vibe and getting focused is top priority at the beginning of each session. I typically keep the lights dimmed and have something visually stimulating on the television playing on mute with subtitles. Once the vibe is right, I'll talk to the artist about the song we'll be working on and see if they have any needs or concerns regarding the recording, if I'm producing I'll try to get a tempo to work with before I start auditioning sounds.
Q: Tell us about your studio setup.
A: I work out of Brewery Recording Studios in LA when I'm recording, but outside of the studio I prefer a minimalist setup with a MacBook Pro, UA Apollo Arrow and Komplete Kontrol S25. I pride myself on being able to work in any DAW, but I prefer Pro Tools for recording and editing. I enjoy the workflow of Logic Pro for mixing and production, but I mostly use FL Studio 20 for production after switching over from Ableton Live 10.
Q: What other musicians or music production professionals inspire you?
Q: Describe the most common type of work you do for your clients.
A: Mixing. Production