• Robert L. Smith on SoundBetter
  • Robert L. Smith on SoundBetter
  • Robert L. Smith on SoundBetter
  • Robert L. Smith on SoundBetter
  • Robert L. Smith on SoundBetter
  • Robert L. Smith on SoundBetter
  • Robert L. Smith on SoundBetter
  • Robert L. Smith on SoundBetter

Robert L. Smith


/ 35 Reviews (28 Verified)

Audio Samples

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Lady Gaga "Speechless"
I was the Mix Engineer in this production
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Rickie Lee Jones "Trouble Man"
I was the Recording Engineer in this production
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Lang Lang "Precipitato from Piano Sonata No. 7 in B-Flat Major, Op. 83"
I was the Recording Engineer in this production
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Doro "Love Me In Black"
I was the Recording Engineer and Mix Engineer in this production



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Robert L. Smith latest news
Mar 24, 2015
Investing in your own brand is the smart thing to do...

You know you're doing something right with your brand when clients
recite it back to you. "Just like your slogan: Great Music. Period."

Mar 05, 2015
More Duran Duran mastering today...

Always fun mastering these songs!

Feb 09, 2015
20 Feet From Stardom wins Grammy!

Best Music film win for documentary film. proud to be a part of it. Congrats to the cast and crew.

Jan 23, 2015
If you haven't checked out FabFilter, you're missing out!


Dec 05, 2014
Congrats to "Twenty Feet From Stardom" for the Grammy nomination for Best Music Film!

Congrats to "Twenty Feet From Stardom" for the Grammy nomination for Best Music Film!

Dec 01, 2014
Great chat with Chuck from BantMu!


Dec 01, 2014
Listen to my interview with Matt Boudreau from Working Class Audio


Oct 28, 2014
Some new gear updates...


Oct 27, 2014
New website up!

And we're LIVE! Please check out the new site here  http://defyrecordings.com/

Oct 20, 2014
New website on the way...

Just saw a sneak peek of the new website in progress. Very psyched! Hoping to share it with you in a week ‪#‎progress‬

Oct 07, 2014
Buscabulla album out today!


Sep 21, 2014
Happy Anniversary to me and NYC

28 years ago today I left everything I knew and moved to New York City to begin this career. Best thing I EVER did. Onward!

Aug 25, 2014
Fulltone Tape Echo!

I've been wanting to get one of these for a long time. My old Roland Space Echo was too warbly. Nice to have clean, analog repeats.....repeats...........repeats.................repeats

Oscar & Grammy winning, Emmy nominated Producer/Engineer/Mixer. 30 years of Gold & Platinum experience. Recent clients of note include Lady Gaga, U2, The Ting Tings, Chaka Khan, Glee, Placido Domingo, Ingrid Michaelson, Alice Cooper and Duran Duran.

Production-Recording-Mixing-Mastering at Defy Recordings/New York City

Management: Duffy Macri/duffymacri.com

My credits include

Gear highlights

  • Pro Tools HDX
  • API
  • Manley
  • Avalon
  • Wunder Audio
  • Focusrite
  • Chandler
  • Empirical Labs
  • Apogee
  • SPL
  • Thermionic Culture
  • Neumann
  • Gordon Instruments
  • Josephson
  • Coles
  • Zerotronics
  • Matchless
  • McDSP
  • Sonnox
  • Brainworx
  • Waves
  • SoundToys
  • iZotope

Genres I specialize in

Terms of Service

Every project has its own special needs. Please feel free to contact us and we will be happy to discuss what you need to get the best result for your music, mixes, score and recordings.

Tutorials by Robert L. Smith

Reference songs and how to use them


It comes in many forms. As a feeling. A mindset. A way of life....

There are no rules when you're capturing that perfect vocal take

Recording vocals In many styles of music the vocal is the most important...

Reviews of Robert L. Smith

  • Verified Review Default-avatar 14 days ago by

    Robert was consulting me on my project.
    He is very professional and knowledgeable.
    In particular, I was impressed that he was always available when his opinion and professional help was needed. He would always get back with his recommendations within very short time.

    I look forward to work with Robert in the future.

    Thank you, Robert!

  • Verified Review Listing_thumb_dh000003 28 days ago by

    I enjoyed to work with Robert. He is a gentle and professional person. He guided me to work smoothly, and often advised me about mixing, sound level and effect. I would like to work with him again in the future.

  • Verified Review Default-avatar 29 days ago by

    Great experience with Robert. A true professional!! Mixes were done quick and the sound will stand up next to anything on radio. Will absolutely use him again.

  • Verified Review Default-avatar 2 months ago by

    Robert mixed and mastered a second song for me and it came out amazing! I really enjoy working with Robert. A total professional, nice guy and great at what he does. Looking forward to working with Robert again in the near future.

  • Verified Review Default-avatar 3 months ago by

    Robert never lets us down. Incredible mixes with courteous and professional service. Highly recommended!

  • Verified Review Default-avatar 3 months ago by

    It was a pleasure and an honor to work with Robert on this song. The mix was perfect on first pass and the mastered version is perfection. Very professional, fast responses, polite and genuine. I couldn't have asked for a better experience.

  • Verified Review Listing_thumb_img_2087_fotor_square_2 4 months ago by

    Another fantastic job from Robert! We're having a brilliant time working with him and wouldn't take our songs anywhere else, absolute pro :)

  • Verified Review Listing_thumb_img_2087_fotor_square_2 5 months ago by

    Robert is strongly dedicated and has both the drive and expertise to lift recordings to a brilliant level. He is easy to communicate with and always strives to deliver a mix which is in line with the ambience and feeling we want to convey.
    Accord de Voix can't get enough - if you're in doubt, choose Robert!

  • Verified Review Default-avatar 5 months ago by

    Fantastic job by Robert! Exceeds our expectations every time. Highly recommended!

  • Verified Review Default-avatar 5 months ago by

    Another excellent job by Robert! Nothing but the highest quality mixes, professionalism, and utmost care for his clients satisfaction. An absolute pleasure to work with. Very highly recommended.

  • Verified Review Listing_thumb_0005606280_20 5 months ago by

    After my hobby-project grew into a heavily layered song, I knew I'd need a professional to help get my mix to sound balanced and polished up. From the beginning Robert was extremely helpful, informative, and quick with correspondence. I learned a lot during the process, so excited to have a track that sounds this professional. Thanks!

  • Verified Review Default-avatar 6 months ago by

    Robert L. Smith was an absolute pleasure to work with. He's mega-talented, detail oriented and totally in-sync with the needs of the song and vision of the client. Professional, prompt and enthusiastic. I would definitely recommend him and I look forward to working with him in the future.

  • Verified Review Listing_thumb_cara2 6 months ago by

    Nice sound. Answers messages very fast. Good attention to detail. Friendly. I believe hiring a pro like Robert for mixing my album was a good investment for my music.

  • Verified Review Default-avatar 7 months ago by

    I had an amazing experience with Robert who taught me a lot, and who gave me mind-blowing mixes. Robert was patient and ultra cool. He explained things that most people on his level would not do. I am honored to have worked with him, and look forward to working with him on my 2nd project. I picked the absolute best!

  • Verified Review Listing_thumb_8398rl 7 months ago by

    Robert L. Smith is a dream to work with. He is friendly, artistic, and very customer-oriented. Working with Robert on this project was one of the best experiences of my professional career, and I expect to work with him for many years to come.

  • Verified Review Listing_thumb_207483_747161894793_2270134_n 7 months ago by

    Amazing results!! I hired Robert to finish my barebones song (drums, piano, vocals only). He did an absolutely awesome job arranging guitars, synths, bass, and finishing the mix to professional quality. He maintained 100% communication and transparency from the beginning sharing each rough mix along the way and responding to my feedback.

  • Verified Review Default-avatar 8 months ago by

    Robert is a great professional in his business. He knows how your songs should sound. I'm so excited about his work! Highly recommended!

  • Verified Review Listing_thumb_image 8 months ago by

    It was such a wonderful experience to work with Robert. We flew to New York to record with him and we had so much fun getting to know him and he was super helpful and supportive throughout the project, a true pro and we just can't thank him enough for everything he did to help us and the songs all came out great!!! Robert you're awesome!

  • Verified Review Listing_thumb_img_2087_fotor_square_2 9 months ago by

    Robert from the off has been the most incredible professional and gentleman, giving our song the attention to detail and dedication that we could only wish for! We are indebted to his experience and expertise in bringing our song to life, and we are extremely proud to have worked with him. We can't recommend him highly enough! :)

  • Verified Review Listing_thumb_maestro_ 10 months ago by

    The truth in of a great production lies in being able to play it back over again and be just as excited as the first time. Having said that I have done terrible things to the replay button. Unspeakable things. The mastering of this project is incredible.

  • Verified Review Listing_thumb_maestro_ 10 months ago by

    From this day onward I will forever preach the gospel that is Robert L Smith. Yay for he is the truth. He raised my music from the dead. Not in 3 days but 24hrs. Forsake these sinful amateurs and accept him into your life and into your mix.

  • Verified Review Listing_thumb_2013-06-15_12.25.00 10 months ago by

    It was a pleasure to work with Robert. Great experience!

  • Verified Review Listing_thumb_havokway_21_copy about 1 year ago by

    Robert L. Smith is a true professional! Very helpful and got my tracks sounding their absolute best! Highly recommended!

  • Verified Review Listing_thumb_1972348_10154311533497729_2037974104662680668_n about 1 year ago by

    Great engineer, very professional and an amazing person! Highly recommended!

  • Verified Review Default-avatar about 1 year ago by

    Robert Smith did a great job he mastered 10 songs mixed by 2 different people different levels I was very impressed with the results. He knows his stuff.

  • Verified Review Listing_thumb_image over 1 year ago by

    Robert is an amazing mixer. He pays attention to details and listens to suggestions. He was extremely patient and dealt with the project in a professional manner. It was a pleasure working with him and I hope our paths will cross again!

  • Verified Review Listing_thumb_foto_30.06.13_21_41_08 over 1 year ago by

    Thanks Robert, this was a easy and good collaboration.

  • Verified Review Listing_thumb_img_7553 over 1 year ago by

    Robert is an excellent producer, engineer and mixer. He produced and recorded a very challenging vocal for me for a dense remix. Not only does he have a highly trained ear and an incredible sense of what will work, he also has a great energy that made me feel very relaxed and able to give my best. I look forward to working with Robert again soon!

  • Listing_thumb_photo_2 8 months ago by

    Robert is one of the best in the business! He has subbed as an engineer on a couple sessions for me, and everything that I get from him is absolutely incredible!

  • Listing_thumb_main_1_crop 10 months ago by

    I have worked with Robert as a keyboardist, arranger, and writer on a number of projects he's produced and mixed, and I can honestly say he is the best at what he does. Whether you're a Grammy winner or an independent artist just starting out, Robert will approach your project with the same dedication, and you will be THRILLED by the results.

  • Default-avatar about 2 years ago by

    Robert is a fantastic engineer and producer. In addition to his skillful ear, He is also incredibly nice and easy-going, taking plenty of time to consult with his clients regarding their projects. I feel very confident giving him full control over my mixes.

  • Default-avatar about 2 years ago by

    Robert mixed and produced my song! He has a fantastic ear! He is very professional, He is incredibly nice, will give you insight on what the song needs, he is very polite and always on time! I am looking forward towards working with Robert again in the future!

    Absolutely Recommend!

  • Default-avatar about 2 years ago by

    I'm from Brazil and i sent my mixes to Robert. He was very attentive, awsering our e-mails very quickly. He's work have exceed our spectations. Very fast, very competent. I really reccomend him.

  • Picture?type=large over 2 years ago by

    I have known Robert for a while now and his mastering of my mixes is always great. He retains dynamics while also enhancing width, impact and tightening things up just a bit more. I recommend Robert/Defy Recordings for mastering before anyone else. Turnaround time is very fast too.

  • Picture?type=large over 2 years ago by

    Robert mixed my EP of 5 tracks. He did a great job and was very fast. He always replied almost in real time to all my emails. I arrived to him after a bad experience with another facility. I highly reccomend him. If my EP will have success he really contruibuted to it.

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Interview with Robert L. Smith

What questions do customers most commonly ask you? What's your answer?

Ones that would be answered by some basic research. Please do some homework before you decide to hire an engineer, producer, mixer or mastering engineer. The experience can be a great one with some basic knowledge.

What was your career path? How long have you been doing this?

Started recording when I was 11 years old. I've been improving my skill set professionally for nearly 30 years.

Is there anyone on SoundBetter you know and would recommend to your clients?

Josh, Dodes, Malcolm Gold, Tim Leitner and Lewis Robertson

What's your 'promise' to your clients?

I'm not 'done' until I think its as great as can be.

What's your typical work process?

My process revolves around the client's needs. Its all about creating an environment that is conducive towards creativity. That includes making the gear 'disappear'. Once an artist starts questioning gear choices, we're doomed. Its never about the gear, its about the music. If I'm working on my own I have a usual method that allows me to be very productive. A mix is a solid day's work, with a second day to touch up the mix. There's always some little thing I catch on that second day that I want to change. I prefer to mix on my own, the mixes always come out better that way. I'd rather have the artist see the 'big picture' of the mix than the minutiae of the mechanics of it.

What's the biggest misconception about what you do?

"Anyone can do it". Incorrect! Production, recording, mixing and mastering are highly skilled careers. Buying software and a microphone does not make someone an engineer, mixer or mastering engineer. If you want your music to sound 'professional', hire a professional.

What questions do you ask prospective clients?

1. Budget 2. Goal. The two answers affect the entire process

How would you describe your style?


What other musicians or music production professionals inspire you?

Phil Ramone, Bill Price, Neil Dorfsman, Adrian Sherwood, Tom Lord Alge, Flood, Brian Eno, The Blue Nile

Analog or digital and why?

It doesn't matter. The important thing is to embrace whatever system you have available and maximize its possibilities

What type of music do you usually work on?

The best possible

What do you bring to a song?

A mission to make the song the absolute best it can be

What do you like most about your job?

It's a life, not a job.

What advice do you have for a customer looking to hire a provider like you?

Before you hire a producer, engineer, mixer or producer, make sure you hear something they've done that YOU love.

What's your strongest skill?

Focus, infinite patience, and attention to detail

Tell us about your studio setup.

Pro Tools HDX & API console, with the best outboard gear

Describe the most common type of work you do for your clients.

Production, recording, mixing and mastering