A "musician's producer", Mat Leffler-Schulman has 20 years experience mixing, mastering, and producing a eclectic range of artists. Future Islands, Waka Flocka Flame, Baltimore Symphony Orchestra.
My job is to get to the heart of your music and punctuate it – then get the hell out of the way. When we start a project together, I want to know what your creative goals are. Then we'll work together to meet your goals and listen to what the song is asking for. I frequently work with bands recording at home to help them get the best out of their recordings so they're ready for mixing.
I'm a mixer, mastering engineer and producer who runs Mobtown Studios, an award-winning, artist-friendly studio in Baltimore. I've spent the better part of my life fascinated by recording and manipulating sound. My own musical interests are wide-ranging and that's reflected in the range of artists that I've worked with, including Future Islands, Ice Cube, Waka Flocka Flame, Dan Deacon, The Dismemberment Plan, Jukebox the Ghost, Morning Teleportation, and the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra.
I studied and toured as a drummer, then earned a BS in Music Recording and Music Business at MTSU. After college, I worked for Warner Bros. Records and DC101 for several years before opening Mobtown Studios in 2006.
I've worked on projects released on 4AD, ATO, Bar/None, Interscope, Merge, Thrill Jockey, Topshelf, Tzadik, Run For Cover, Universal Music & Warner Bros. Records. My clients have been featured on Saturday Night Live, American Idol and The Late Show with David Letterman.
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14 ReviewsEndorse Mat Leffler-Schulman
Love recording with Mat. He's always full of great ideas of his own but is also highly responsive and committed to executing your vision. He's also great at pairing an easygoing manner that puts shy performers like me at their ease, with the ability to work like a demon to make sure everything gets done. He has added countless moments of magic to our stuff & I always know that recording with him will be fun, creatively satisfying, and will finish up with a great product. Mobtown Stidios is one of the very best things about Baltimore.
Mat is a super genius on so many levels. Recording with Mat BEGINS at epic and goes up from there. He gets incredibly clean, rich, beautiful sounds; he's got your back performance-wise when you track; he's a techie genius of the highest order; his touch is powerful yet transparent; and he is THE MOST chill, smart, easygoing-but-still-pushing-you producer ever. Much love, respect and gratitude!!
Mat is a true gem in the recording world. He works hard every day to create a commuity space that feels very open to creativity and sonic exploration. He's a great listener and really focuses on what the artist(s) are really trying to achieve with their recordings. His ability to translate that vision into reality, regardless of genre, speaks to his honest and genuine love of music and recording.
Mat is one of the most intelligent and intuitive producer musicians I know.
He was fundamental in presenting Soul Coughing remixes and bootlegs.
Since then I have worked with him in studio and live performances, and he always brings out the best in musicians. Mat is a truly inspiring artist, I would work with him anytime.
Working in the studio with Mat was a true pleasure! He literally saved the day with my most recent project. Mat stepped in to both mix and master. He was personable and professional with an amazing ear and attention to detail. He worked with me to ensure each track was correct, sorting through each file to find the perfect sound. He truly cares about your project.
We came in with a difficult project - songs written collaboratively by 3 people who live in different states with scant rehearsal. Matt got us performing and sounding better than even we expected, and we had a blast in the process. Matt's skill as a producer and patience as an engineer stand out. Won't hesitate to use him again on projects large and small.
I love Mat,
I've wotked with him on multiple projects, not only is he great at what he does, but he also does it in timely manner. He is so easy to work with, respects your vreative decisions, and will provide his honest input if you ask nicely.
He is always my go to guy here in Charm City for audio awesomeness, and he should be yoir go to guy as well :)
We (Lushfarm) worked with Mat on our fourth studio album, and he was the first producer we worked with to really nail our live sound. He was very open to our ideas and worked really hard to do things how we wanted, all while elevating the recording with his own creative spin. He is super nice, which helps create a welcoming environment, and he knows every piece of his gear without being a snob.
Mat, through his creativity, knowledge, and studio full of wonderful gear, has helped us achieve and exceed our vision on four very ambitious albums. Mat excels at both the fundamental aspects of getting great sounds for basic tracking, and in helping us find new sounds through layering, overdubbing, and using the mixing board as an instrument itself for the more experimental aspects of our music.
We've worked with Mat on several albums for two projects, one involving a multilayered string quartet, and lots of crazy sounds flying around, and he is amazing to work with. So open-minded and knowledgeable, he always has great input and suggestions, or just new things to try out. He is so kind and makes everyone feel so comfortable at the studio, I could not imagine a better recording situation.
What a pro. Great ear, great input, fun to collaborate with and incredibly open and malleable to artist’s visions and ideas. Work with him. You’ll be so happy you did.
Mat is the kind of flexible, versatile, and open-minded person you want to make a record with. Whether you need him to arrange microphones and consider acoustics or edit beats with precision of a surgeon, whether you want industry standard polish or you want to make something personal and experimental, he has the experience and creative solutions to help you find the sound you're searching for.
Working with Mat was everything my band and I could have hoped for. Not only is he a great engineer with a fantastic ear, he's also incredibly personable, kind, and unfathomably generous. We're still in contact with him months after our session ended, and we cannot wait to work with him again.
Incredible engineer, small business owner and teacher. Can't wait to bring my new projects to Mobtown in 2018. Mat and the Mobtown team create a great environment to create and collaborate with local artists in the Baltimore scene.
Interview with Mat Leffler-Schulman
Q: Analog or digital and why?
A: They each have their place. They are not mutually exclusive.
Q: What questions do customers most commonly ask you? What's your answer?
A: What are your rates? How long does it take? My answer is that there is no stock answer. Every project is very different. Let's talk about it.
Q: What type of music do you usually work on?
A: I enjoy listening to a wide spectrum of diverse music from around the world and from various times in history. That range is reflected in the artists that I work with. I prefer not to niche myself and I think that diversity enriches my musical perspective. I've worked with Native American flute performers from Wyoming, indie rock bands from Boston, and EDM artists from Ukraine.
Q: What's your typical work process?
A: The work process begins with getting to know your creative process and goals. Everything after that is organic and flows with the needs of the project.
Q: What other musicians or music production professionals inspire you?
A: Brian Eno, Prince, Laurie Anderson, Shakira, Frank Zappa. I'm drawn to diligent workers, innovators, and collaborators. I'm inspired by artists who take on all parts of the creative process. I admire musicians who can get down in more than one genre. Life is too short not to try different things.
Q: What was your career path? How long have you been doing this?
A: I was in my first band in high school and the bassist bought a cassette 4-track and didn't want to keep hitting record. So I did. That got me hooked on music production. After that, I went to one of the few schools, at the time, that had a bachelor's degree in music production. I started my career working for radio stations and record labels and opened Mobtown Studios in Baltimore in 2006.
Q: What do you like most about your job?
A: The quiet after a client listens to a final mix and they have no words.
Q: What's the biggest misconception about what you do?
A: That it's a party every day. It's not coke and hookers. We make music. And it's hard work.
Q: If you were on a desert island and could take just 5 pieces of gear, what would they be?
A: Sennheiser MD-441 U, Neumann U87, Neve 1073, Distressor, Federal AM-864/U
Q: Can you share one music production tip?
A: 1. Cut before boost. 2. Listen to isolated tracks sparingly.