Hi and thanks for taking the time to read my blurb. I have been a songwriter for over 20 years and have been an avid Pro Tools user for over 10 of those years. My first experiences of Pro Tools were when friends would let me practice on their already recorded raw tracks and sometimes they would come out sounding a lot better. I love mixing.
I have worked as a producer/artist for over 20 years in mostly rock styles, but as I get older I have branched out a bit. I love mixing 'in the box' because it gives a real sense of organisation and creativity. The best experience I had with mixing was recording my own band with a broken leg, that was when I really honed my skills and mastered the art. I just sat there all day getting creative and I loved it (not the broken leg though). I ended up getting am Album of the Week credit in the local street press and got to hear my tracks all over the national radio. Creating a good mix is paramount for me, as I work based on a reputation that I hope will keep developing and will help me work with some really interesting artists.
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Interview with Stephen Rumph
Q: Tell us about a project you worked on you are especially proud of and why. What was your role?
A: I recorded my own band when I had a broken leg and really used that time to sit there and hone my skills. It was a 9 track album and was in the street press as album of the week, beating out the likes of Northlane and Mac Demarco. I was particularly proud of this because it was all done at home and I didn't need a studio.
Q: What are you working on at the moment?
A: Setting up a vocal recording booth inside my apartment. I have been asked to do a few acoustic studio jobs soon and am nerd-excited about that
Q: Is there anyone on SoundBetter you know and would recommend to your clients?
A: Not yet, but I will soon find out.
Q: Analog or digital and why?
A: Digital - In my apartment and because I travel a lot, it is easier for me to do everything digital. I can get better or very close to an analogue sound if needed
Q: What's your 'promise' to your clients?
A: I will get it right or I will do it again for free
Q: What do you like most about your job?
A: I get to work from home and balance my life
Q: What questions do customers most commonly ask you? What's your answer?
A: What is the price? $100 per track. How long is the turnover? usually depends on the type of track and what it needs.
Q: What's the biggest misconception about what you do?
A: That I work in a huge studio in a building. I work at home with great equipment.
Q: What questions do you ask prospective clients?
A: How are you? What inspired your music? What do you hope to do with your tracks when they are finished?
Q: What advice do you have for a customer looking to hire a provider like you?
A: Listen to their previous work to see if it fits your style
Q: If you were on a desert island and could take just 5 pieces of gear, what would they be?
A: Zoom, Laptop, headphones, aux cable, midi controller
Q: What was your career path? How long have you been doing this?
A: I have been doing this for about 10 years
Q: How would you describe your style?
A: I am a musician, so I describe myself as creative
Q: Which artist would you like to work with and why?
A: Jack White - He has always been a hero of mine and I would do well in that style.
Q: Can you share one music production tip?
A: Train your ears to hear the slightest out of place noises
Q: What type of music do you usually work on?
A: Rock and blues mostly
Q: What's your strongest skill?
A: Automation is my strong suite, but I really like to just see the whole project as one big skill. It takes a lot to get it right and the skill comes from doing all those things well.
Q: What do you bring to a song?
A: Clarity, get each part of the song working in the mix so there isn't a dry eye in the house and you can hear the difference.
Q: What's your typical work process?
A: I like to listen to the track or tracks for a couple of hours and take notes on the best parts of the song, what the artist wants from the song, and usually work to a guide track to get the right sound. Then I start the edit and the mix which is the fun part.
Q: Tell us about your studio setup.
A: I work in the box, so my computer is a Macbook pro connected to Scarlett 2i4, M-Audio Studio speakers, AKAI MPK mini, running Pro Tools 12.7 with the Slate Everything Bundle and Waves Renaissance plugins. I buy new plugins for every new job, depending on what the track needs. I work with a couple of emulated tape machines and compressors that are modelled off famous hardware.
Q: What other musicians or music production professionals inspire you?
A: King Gizzard and the Lizzard Wizzard are a really inovative rock group and I love what they are doing and the frequency of release. My other inspiration is Tchad Blake, he also mixes in the box and has a really minimalistic style with huge results.
Q: Describe the most common type of work you do for your clients.
A: All types. I just like to take work that sounds interesting for example, I was asked to record a lady singing devotional Indian love songs and of course I said yes.