Tell us about a project you worked on you are especially proud of and why. What was your role?
Probably my first professional record with Erin Scarlett, titled 'A Change of Colour'. I have definitely improved on my sound quality massively since this release. However most of that album is production work, Erin came to me with a vocal and an acoustic guitar and said "please help me turn this into something different", so I did - I turned it into a synthy/poppy/folky record.
What are you working on at the moment?
A variety of projects.
Is there anyone on SoundBetter you know and would recommend to your clients?
Not on SoundBetter, however I have a 'reviews' section on my website: http://www.whitenoisemp.co.uk/reviews
Analog or digital and why?
At the minute, a hybrid mix of the two. Digital for recall and clinical manipulation, then to analogue for character.
What's your 'promise' to your clients?
I always try to provide my clients with the highest quality end products, to do that I have to give the most honest advice I can, and I think that is a very important relationship to have.
What do you like most about your job?
I thoroughly enjoy seeing projects from start to finish. Hearing the beginning and end results and seeing the client more than happy with the result is the best feeling.
What questions do customers most commonly ask you? What's your answer?
How long will it take to mix my record? My answer is always "How long is a piece of string?" - If a client wants a very quick mix just with levels, eq, and a bit of dynamics; it may only take 4 hours. However if a client wants a fully professional mix, be prepared to spend approximately one day per track!
What's the biggest misconception about what you do?
"Surely, you just have to record so it should only take the length of a song" - I hear this a lot. people don't realise how much time is needed to make a record broadcast ready.
What questions do you ask prospective clients?
What, in particular, would you like me to achieve with your music?
Do you have any production elements you are looking to add before we start the project?
How do you take your coffee? (For a client-attended mixing session)
What advice do you have for a customer looking to hire a provider like you?
Please hire a professional! Hiring someone for a cheaper rate may seem like a good way to save money, but you will find it will be more expensive in the long run. Record labels and industry contacts don't have the budget to test 'demo' records anymore, so give them a fully professional record that they can simply release as it is!
If you were on a desert island and could take just 5 pieces of gear, what would they be?
Presuming this question refers to audio gear: my RND 511 pre, an API 550a EQ, an LA-2A compressor, my Focusrite interface and iMac to record onto.
What was your career path? How long have you been doing this?
I studied music when I was in school and college, got more heavily into production in college and proceeded onto a production course at university. From there I became a freelancer.
How would you describe your style?
Everything has to be perfect. I ensure that all the clinical production procedures are taken care of in the box, then sum back out to analogue to bring some character to elements.
Which artist would you like to work with and why?
I work with a lot of "tame" country and folk music (being based in the UK); I would really like the opportunity to work with a full-on "Yeehah!" country artist like Miranda Lambert, for example.
Can you share one music production tip?
As humans we require two very important things to live, 'air' and 'warmth', that both can be shifted into the recording medium: Allowing elements to breathe and giving them a warm characteristic enhances the personal experiences we have with the music.
What type of music do you usually work on?
Folk, electronic folk, country, ambient pop.
What's your strongest skill?
Mixing and vocal production.
What do you bring to a song?
I always try to add production elements to a track that become part of the recognised track. This could be something as simple as an automated effect in specific places.
What's your typical work process?
Start with balancing the volumes of the tracks, then proceed to equalisation, dynamics processing, then get creative with FX and production techniques.
Tell us about your studio setup.
Home studio setup with pro audio gear; a blend of digital flexibility and analogue character.
What other musicians or music production professionals inspire you?
I really like how Dave Pensado approaches mixing. Creating a balance between what sounds technically good, and what brings out the emotion/power of certain elements in a production.
Describe the most common type of work you do for your clients.
Mixing, editing, and Sound Production advice.