What are you working on at the moment?
Always working on my next release, be it a single or EP. Never stop learning, and always have a project underway!
What questions do you ask prospective clients?
Do you envision your recordings to sound natural or digitally affected?
What is the basic song info for your project? (BPM(s), sample rate, bitrate, date needed by)
What was your career path? How long have you been doing this?
With a music degree in vocals and composition, I've always wanted to be a recording artist/producer. For 7 years I ran quality assurance test teams for companies that create all the cool gear we producers use every day, so I became well versed in a lot of areas. For that whole time I was learning how to song write and create, and for the past 3 years it has been my full time job, allowing me to solidify really good practices for writing, recording, editing, and producing full pieces.
What's your strongest skill?
By far my vocal styling and orchestration. I'm a life long singer with a highly trained ear for tuning, chordal movement and embellishment, and in the past few years I've become very proficient at translating these gifts through software.
What's your typical work process?
For vocal production end of my tracks...
Record the part itself, and compile the best full recording through editing. I then normally take the raw wav out of my DAW and use a standalone editor (Melodyne) to treat and correct any tuning, remove artifacts (Note: the reason I do this step outside of the recording software is because I typically work with 10-20 vocal lines at once and processing in real time takes a huge amount of CPU). I then bring the corrected part back to my DAW, listen and determine if it will need any timing fixes and if so, I use Ableton's trusted time stretching algorithms. I will always do this process for the lead or prominent line of a section and then use it as the template to line up any parallel like parts.
Is this workflow time consuming? Yes, but it must be done thoughtfully part by part if you're looking for a polished sound. I don't use any automation in my editing. Each word/note gets it's own review, and that is the kind of detail I can offer any client for vocal or lyrical instrument lines.
Tell us about your studio setup.
My current studio setup is very simple; laptop, DAW Ableton Live, Melodyne Editor, Scarlet USB soundcard, a decent mic on a Rode's boom, pair of active Alesis Elevate6 monitors, AKG K240 open Headphones, Akai MPK249 production keyboard. As my production is based mostly heavy vocal textures, plugins, and sampled instruments, this is all I need to execute the pre-mix stages of song creation and editing.
What other musicians or music production professionals inspire you?
The unsung hero of the musical process for me is a thoughtful experienced mix engineer. Yes, performances and arrangers/producers will inspire with their content and vision, but to artistically transform the recordings into something we can completely hear is a task that takes just as much creative power. The mix guy chooses what and how we take in the music, and the problem solving that goes with it can be daunting. For me, the most special part of the pop production process is when that first mix revision is delivered and you remember why you recorded the piece.