Recipient of the 2011-2012 MusiCounts Fred Sherratt Award for Outstanding Achievement in Music and Recording Arts and Sciences; Dan Smith, a graduate of Musitechnic, is a Sound Engineer in Montreal, Canada. Offering affordable “turn key” recording and mixing packages tailored to your music and budget!

Recording and Mixing engineer working out of various studios in and around Montreal. I work on a sliding scale and tailor the rate and studio to your bands needs and budget.

We can record a great sounding "budget" demo EP out of the studios at Musitechnic where I teach or my own Studio and for bigger budget projects we can record in a full blown analog studio, Hotel2Tango where I am a guest engineer, with a great sounding live room, Studer 24-track and all the toys to stay creative!

We can also record the basics (Drum & Bass) at Hotel2Tango and do all the overdubs and vocals in my Studio (Studio Open House). I think you get the idea that we have lots of options to fit any budget!

EDIT:
News update! I now have my own studio space and can offer really great recording rates. For information and pictures, please visit:
http://www.studioopenhouse.com/
https://www.facebook.com/studioopenhouse/

The mixing rates operate the same as recording, depending on the amount of tracks, work needed and your budget. I mix everything from acoustic to rock to electro. Feel free to have a listen to my mixing sampler set on SoundCloud:
https://soundcloud.com/dansoundsmith/sets/original-mixes

Contact me for more info, or to book a session.

Cheers, Dan

Gear highlights

  • Studer A820 24-track
  • Neotek Elite
  • API 3124+
  • neve 1073
  • UA 610
  • GML8302
  • LA2A
  • 1176
  • Distressor
  • Retro STA-Level
  • Massive Passive
  • UAD-2 Plugins
  • 1915 baldwin grand piano
  • vintage & modern instruments & amps from Ludwig Ampeg Fender Gibson Hiwatt

Genres I specialize in

Terms of Service

I work on a floating scale tailored to each client's needs and the project demands. Generally I offer 3 revisions per mix and turn around time is between 48hrs to maximum one week, schedule depending.

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Interview with Dan Smith

Tell us about a project you worked on you are especially proud of and why. What was your role?
I had the honor of recording and mixing my girlfriend's project she had been working on for 10 years before we met. It was a great feeling to be able to share my talents with her to make her dream come true! It was also one of my first big productions I assisted in bringing to light. We recorded the whole band live to a 24-track analog tape machine and it's was a beautiful (and challenging) experience.
Can you share one music production tip?
The single best tip I can share is; SET A DEADLINE (and respect it). There is no other single thing that can better kill creativity and skew the process like overworking on music to the point of either flat out killing it, or transforming it into something that it is not (over perfecting everything). The second tip would be; KEEP IT HUMAN! Do not pitch correct and quantize every note/beat, preserve as much human feel and groove as possible. Having said that, it would be careless to not use the modern techniques at our disposal and to not fix that note that's off, or seriously wonky groove, just don't "over produce it". Record as many musicians as you can together at the same time so they lock together and play off each other's vibe and groove, inspiring creation and pulling the song together in a musical way that grooves naturally! If you are an electronic music producer/artist, try to add in a couple of "real" musician performances into your electronic production. When correctly done, it will really add some groove and an organic feel to often sterile electronic productions!
Tell us about your studio setup.
I work out of various studios around Montreal, the Studios at Musitechnic where I teach and my Home Studio. Having this flexibility of work environments enables me to taylor the studio choice to the artist's budget. I offer recordings in an all Analog Studio with a fantastic sounding live room, or we can do a more modest budget recording at Musitechnic or my Home Studio.
Describe the most common type of work you do for your clients.
I am a recording and Mixing Engineer and an Audio Instructor. Thus, I am very versatile and work across a myriad of genres and styles. I always put the artist and music first, molding myself and my workflow to bring out the artist's vision and intent without simply pasting my sonic footprint on their music. Having said that, I have worked in rock, acoustic/folk, Hip-Hop and EMD. See my portfolio here:https://soundcloud.com/dansoundsmith/sets/original-mixes
What are you working on at the moment?
I am building a fair size recording booth in my home studio which was solely for mixing, so that I can now offer another pricing tier for artists that don't have the budgets to record in the larger studios!
Is there anyone on SoundBetter you know and would recommend to your clients?
Hmm... let me search the site and I'll get back to you on that one. Cheers
What questions do customers most commonly ask you? What's your answer?
How much does it cost to record/mix/master an song/album? This is the part I dislike the most. Money! But, it is a fact of our current existence that we require money to live and share our art and passions. I do require money to live, eat and keep my studio alive and running, thus I must charge a fair price for my services to enable me to continue offering these services! Having said that, I work on a sliding scale, depending on the artist's goals and budget. I am passionate about music and the process of creating finalized music above all else and can tailor the studio to your needs. Just contact me and let's strike a healthy balance!
What's the biggest misconception about what you do?
That being a Sound Engineer is solely a technical job! Yes we use lots of technology and equipment in our process to bring your music into the world, but it is not unlike a musician using musical instruments to create their art. Sound engineering is just as creative and things go askew when engineers loose sight of that and get "lost in the gear"!
Analog or digital and why?
Clearly both! A wise engineer will use the best of both worlds in a hybrid system. There are things analog does better and there are things digital does better and the ability to work with both gives us immense power and flexibility during the creation and production processes! We truly live in magical times!
What's your 'promise' to your clients?
To always put [your] music first and to not stop until everyone is happy and content!
What do you like most about your job?
Working with music and sound of course, but also working with artists and being involved in the creational process of birthing their projects!
What questions do you ask prospective clients?
Would you like an espresso, latte or cappuccino?
What advice do you have for a customer looking to hire a provider like you?
Contact me anytime during your writing/creation process and send me some demoes if you want a head of time so we can better get to know each other before we enter the studio environment. When it comes time to record, or mix, have your "stuff" together. Know your songs, be prepared and well rehearsed, but also leave room for spontaneity and creativity that often pops up in the studio.
If you were on a desert island and could take just 5 pieces of gear, what would they be?
This is a vague question, so I will add some parameters ;) I shall assume my basic life needs are met and I am on this island with only 5 pieces of gear to record and mix an album! So, 5 pieces of gear... 1) Vintage Tube u47 Microphone (with replacement tubes) 2) Neve 8078 Recording/Mixing Console (with flying faders) 3) Fairchild 670 Stereo Compressor 4) Chandler Curve Bender analogue EQ 5) Ampex ATR-102 Master Tape Recorder (with sufficient tape
What was your career path? How long have you been doing this?
I was working in aqua-culture and needed to change life directions. I have always been an avid music listener, sharing in weekly "music nights" with my friends and family for decades. When I decided to change careers I immediately wanted to take my passion for sound and music and crystalize it into a profession. I graduated from an audio school (Musitechnic, where I now teach) in 2010 and have been doing music as full-time ever since. I work in postproduction and also teach audio, but my real passion is in recording bands and mixing music.
Tell us about a project you worked on you are especially proud of and why. What was your role?
I had the honor of recording and mixing my girlfriend's project she had been working on for 10 years before we met. It was a great feeling to be able to share my talents with her to make her dream come true! It was also one of my first big productions I got to help bring to light. We recorded the whole band live to a 24-track analog tape machine and it's was a beautiful (and challenging) experience.
How would you describe your style?
Transparent, intuitive and flexible
Which artist would you like to work with and why?
I love to work with any artist. I love to have the honor of being involved in bringing their vision out of themselves and into the world and to assist them in making their creations a reality.
If you were on a desert island and could take just 5 pieces of gear, what would they be?
This is a vague question, so I will add some parameters ;) I shall assume my basic life needs are met and I am on this island with only 5 pieces of gear to record and mix an album! So, 5 pieces of gear...1) Vintage Tube u47 Microphone (with replacement tubes) 2) Neve 8078 Recording/Mixing Console (with flying faders) 3) Fairchild 670 Stereo Compressor 4) Chandler Curve Bender analogue EQ 5) Ampex ATR-102 Master Tape Recorder (with sufficient tape)
What was your career path? How long have you been doing this?
I was working in aqua-culture and needed to change life directions. I have always been an avid music listener, sharing in weekly "music nights" with my friends and family for decades. When I decided to change careers I immediately wanted to take my passion for sound and music and crystalize it into a profession. I graduated from an audio school (Musitechnic, where I now teach) in 2010 and have been working with music and sound full-time ever since. I work in postproduction and also teach audio, but my real passion is in recording bands and mixing music.
How would you describe your style?
Transparent, intuitive and flexible
Which artist would you like to work with and why?
I love to work with any artist. I love to have the honor of being involved in bringing their vision out of themselves and into the world and to assist them in making their creations a reality.
What type of music do you usually work on?
As I mentioned earlier; I have worked in rock, acoustic/folk, Hip-Hop and EMD. I am not limited to a genre or style and love to work in new areas, because for me it's all the same. Once you strip away categories, generalizations, market trends et al, it all boils down to MUSIC... vibe, feeling, emotion and making sure that the music's message is transmitted fully and honestly!
What's your strongest skill?
My passion for music and love of sound!
What do you bring to a song?
My main goal is to stay transparent and mold the recording and mixing process to the particulars of the artist and the artist's vision. I will use my experience, knowledge and passion to help the artist shape and bring out their vision into a finalized professional commercially competitive creation!
What's your typical work process?
Well, this is a tough question to answer! I would say that my typical work process is to not have a typical work process and to be flexible, to be able to shift with the winds of creation and the uniqueness of every artist, song and production!
What other musicians or music production professionals inspire you?
Oh there's a long list of producers, engineers and artists that inspire me and I find new ones daily! I love any musical production that comes to get me on the inside, emotionally and awaken all my senses. At this time I have been listening to Gust of Wind by Pharrell (engineered by Mick Guzauski) on loop. I love the soundscape and emotional voyage it brings me on! https://vimeo.com/108298044