I'm a collaborator - it can be really fun to make your own music, by yourself and for yourself, but that's not my sweet spot. I love the feeling of working as a team of two or more musicians, making something awesome and beautiful out of absolutely nothing. If you've got an idea, no matter how big or small or bare, I can contribute.
I am first and foremost a writer and producer - that fuels everything else I do. I play sessions and produce them well because I know the sympathy and empathy that needs to be present for the sake of the original composition. I write and produce artists both locally and remotely, as well as my own creative work. I regularly play sessions and play live, both as an instrumentalist and vocalist. If it can be goes under the umbrella of American Popular Music, I do it regularly. In Nashville, a good portion of the work is rock, pop, country/folk, singer-songwriter, and all around Americana - I regularly play and write in a glam/pop band, as well as produce artists in genres that span from acoustic folk to soul/r&b music. My specialty is in songs. If you've got a composition that you need to bring life to, count me in!
-Writing/Producing/Recording (demos, singles, EP/LP, other - full productions)
-Arranging for any type of ensemble
-Performance (piano/keys, guitar, bass, drums, vocals)
**Resume, References, and additional Rates available with request!**
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Interview with Jake Ohlbaum
Q: Tell us about a project you worked on you are especially proud of and why. What was your role?
A: The Foxies have a single coming out called "Be Afraid Boy." I'm so excited about proud of this track. I produced it, helped write the tune, played all the instruments, and sang the BGVs. It's a girl power anthem - a unique one, we're excited for the song to come out and connect with our audiences.
Q: What are you working on at the moment?
A: Working on new music! The Foxies have music coming out that we're super excited about, I'm working on a solo project, and as always, working on new music for various
Q: If you were on a desert island and could take just 5 pieces of gear, what would they be?
A: SM-58, AKG C414, Computer, Focusrite interface, and my guitar.
Q: How would you describe your style?
A: Loose...I like to be available to my artists and clients anytime/any place/anyhow. Here's what I mean. There are no dealbreakers for the way that I work. Certainly some options cost more money/time than others, but I don't like to work ONE specific way each time, that's boring. Music is like life, and life isn't boring. There's plenty of ups and downs. Whether we're recording in a studio, in my house, outside, or in an airplane, there's something special about capturing a specific atmosphere. And I like to be on my toes in different atmospheres.
Q: Which artist would you like to work with and why?
A: Beck or Dan Auerbach or Jack Antonoff - these guys are genius writers, singers, performers, and producers. I can't imagine a step in the process where they lack in ability, so by working with them I'd be able to collaborate, but also learn so much about the process.
Q: Can you share one music production tip?
A: Great mixing is just great arranging. If a song is arranged and produced properly, the mixing process won't have to hide anything.
Q: What type of music do you usually work on?
A: I generally work on rock, pop, and americana music, and of course singer-songwriters in those particular genres. But as a touring and session musician, I am well versed in country, funk, R&B, hip-hop, and hard rock, and have studied years of composition/arranging for classical, jazz, and musical theater music.
Q: What do you bring to a song?
A: My best instrument is my ear - I'm a writer and producer mostly, but I am first and foremost a FAN of music. I pride myself on the ability to listen to music from a consumer perspective and produce that way. Instead of overloading songs with so much information, bells & whistles, and musical chops, I always want to serve the song. That's all I care about. It starts with a great song, and it ends with serving that song.
Q: What's your typical work process?
A: Depends on the project - I can do everything from an in studio session with the client, and build a track myself with as little as a guitar/vocal... I pride myself on being flexible, I can cater our process to your needs and comfortability. Generally, it only takes me about 1-2 hours to build and produce a track if I'm by myself, the rest of the time will be used for fine tuning, post-production, etc. I like to work quickly, but don't like to rush. So always important to do enough pre-production so that once we hit record, we're totally prepared, even if we're improvising.
Q: Tell us about your studio setup.
A: Full range of dynamic and condenser mics (notably AKG C414, SM7-B), a Focusrite Thunderbolt Pre-Amp Interface, over 10 guitars/basses, full range keys/organ/synth/strings, drum set, and gear for mixing/mastering.
Q: What other musicians or music production professionals inspire you?
A: There are too many to name. Biggest influences overall are the likes of The Beatles, Bruce Springsteen, Prince, The Eagles, Billy Joel, and Jimi Hendrix. My band is highly influenced by David Bowie, Blondie, Joy Division, and Billy Idol. These days, my biggest guys and gals are Jack Antonoff (Bleachers, Fun, Taylor Swift), Dan Wilson (Dixie Chicks, Adele, Chris Stapleton), Dave Cobb (Jason Isbell, Sturgill Simpson, Lake Street Dive, Chris Stapleton), Ryan Adams, Julia Michaels, and St. Vincent.
Q: Describe the most common type of work you do for your clients.
A: The work has a wide range, but generally I make records. Whether I'm making a demo, a score for a web series, or an original master of a tune (I've had at least one of each in the last week), I'm always recording, performing the instruments and mixing the music myself for a solid, cohesive sound.