D. James Goodwin


D. James Goodwin on SoundBetter

Recordings are a fine art to me, and it's my life's work to do it differently. It's quite simple really...I look at records as if I'm making a film. Lighting choices, camera pan, depth of field... it's all relevant. I like to make new sounds from an old form. The bridge between the avant-garde garde and the technicolor of high fidelity is my goal

Some of my recent discography includes Bob Weir's "Blue Mountain", Kevin Morby's "Singing Saw", Tim Berne's "You Have Been Watching Me", David Torn's "Only Sky", Craig Finn's "We All Want The Same Things", Kaki King's "The Neck Is A Bridge To The Body"

Click the 'Contact' above to get in touch. Looking forward to hearing from you.

Interview with D. James Goodwin

  1. Q: Tell us about a project you worked on you are especially proud of and why. What was your role?

  2. A: Bob Weir's "Blue Mountain". I tracked and mixed the record. I also took photos that became the record artwork. I'm proud of it, because when I heard the music, I saw the west. I saw the plains and the mountains, and the vastness. I feel like I made that record. A record that paints that picture perfectly.

  3. Q: What are you working on at the moment?

  4. A: Currently tracking Clare Bowen's debut LP with Josh Kaufman. Also mixing new Wand LP for Drag City, and Pecas for Team Love.

  5. Q: Is there anyone on SoundBetter you know and would recommend to your clients?

  6. A: I'm sure.

  7. Q: Analog or digital and why?

  8. A: Both. Both are good. Both are just tools.

  9. Q: What's your 'promise' to your clients?

  10. A: I make no promise, but for the fact that I will put my spirit into my work. I do promise they will feel that, no matter what.

  11. Q: What do you like most about your job?

  12. A: All of it.

  13. Q: What questions do customers most commonly ask you? What's your answer?

  14. A: How much do you charge.... ha.

  15. Q: What's the biggest misconception about what you do?

  16. A: That I can fix a poorly composed song. Or that I am simply a technician, though most don't assume that

  17. Q: What questions do you ask prospective clients?

  18. A: Too many to list here. Most importantly, what does this record mean.....

  19. Q: What advice do you have for a customer looking to hire a provider like you?

  20. A: If you are looking for artistry, look in the right places, at the right people. Don't worry about what records they've done. Vision says it all.

  21. Q: If you were on a desert island and could take just 5 pieces of gear, what would they be?

  22. A: There would be no electricity, so it wouldn't matter! I'd take my old nylon string Martin.

  23. Q: What was your career path? How long have you been doing this?

  24. A: Began assisting at age 16. Haven't looked back since, 23 years later.

  25. Q: How would you describe your style?

  26. A: Widescreen. Technicolor. High Fidelity with character.

  27. Q: Which artist would you like to work with and why?

  28. A: Any artist I would love to work with has already made records that I love, so no need to worry about that. I want to work with artists who want to do something new and say something new, with a profound respect for the art form we know as music.

  29. Q: Can you share one music production tip?

  30. A: Be kind. Kind with ideas, kind with relationships, kind with interactions. That kindness will always speak through music.

  31. Q: What type of music do you usually work on?

  32. A: Most often, left of center pop and rock music. Often, avant garde and experimental jazz and instrumental music.

  33. Q: What's your strongest skill?

  34. A: Making records sound deep and wide. Setting a landscape.

  35. Q: What do you bring to a song?

  36. A: Again, depends on the music. I like to think on the most basic level, I can light the song in such a way that tilts a listener's head in a different direction, whilst being true to the aim of the music at hand.

  37. Q: What's your typical work process?

  38. A: Depends on the music.

  39. Q: Tell us about your studio setup.

  40. A: My studio, The Isokon, is setup for my perfect workflow. MCI 416 console (custom modified for moi), Barefoot MM27 monitors, Harbeth P3ESR mini monitors, dozens of odd reverbs, compressors, distortion devices, color boxes, etc..... I mix using digital medium, and analog hardware, always. I have far too much interesting hardware to mix in the box.

  41. Q: What other musicians or music production professionals inspire you?

  42. A: Alan Parsons, Tchad Blake, Rick Hall, The Swampers, Phill Brown, Milestone recordings to me : Miles Davis' Bitches Brew Talk Talk : Spirit Of Eden & Laughingstock Tortoise: Standards Pink Floyd: Dark Side Of the Moon Fleetwood Mac: Rumours Portishead: 3 Latin Playboys Neil Young: Harvest

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

  44. A: Mixing and tracking.

GenresSounds Like
  • Craig Finn
  • Kevin Morby
  • Bob Weir
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