Aquarius. Bout that life.
Mixing, mastering, audio repair, and track production. All genres of music.
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Interview with Santino
Q: Tell us about a project you worked on you are especially proud of and why. What was your role?
A: My own instrumental Hip Hop project under the artist name Sonny Vega "Better than a gold UZI." I did everything including the artwork, publishing, and distribution. Avalible on iTunes, Google Play, Amazon Music, Spotify......etc.
Q: What are you working on at the moment?
A: Working on producing tracks for Sacramento Hip Hop artist Doey Rock's upcoming project, Mixing and mastering an audio-book for author Laural Bill
Q: Is there anyone on SoundBetter you know and would recommend to your clients?
A: Not yet.
Q: Analog or digital and why?
A: I use a combination of both. although, I mixed some songs that were tracked to 2" tape and then mixed them in the box..... there was definitely a special quality to the finished track.
Q: What's your 'promise' to your clients?
A: I'll do everything I can to present a spectacular finished product.
Q: What do you like most about your job?
A: Being able to do what I love.
Q: What questions do customers most commonly ask you? What's your answer?
A: How soon can you have it done? Soon, and it will sound amazing!
Q: What's the biggest misconception about what you do?
A: The biggest misconception about what I do is that you can bootleg some software and plugins and BOOM you're a producer/engineer. Technology has made it easier to make music and I think people underestimate the amount of technical knowledge and skill required to properly produce and mix records.
Q: What questions do you ask prospective clients?
A: What style of Music they do? What kind of "sound" are they looking for?
Q: What advice do you have for a customer looking to hire a provider like you?
A: Don't be afraid to ask for what you want. It's your music and it should sound how you want it to sound.
Q: If you were on a desert island and could take just 5 pieces of gear, what would they be?
A: EMU-mp7, headphones, interface, laptop, power generator
Q: What was your career path? How long have you been doing this?
A: I started in the early 00's as an artist and out of necessity got into mixing and production. Got some gear and went for it in '08. Did as much internet learning as I could and then went to college for audio engineering. Been mostly a freelance engineer and producer since 2014.
Q: How would you describe your style?
A: Bay Area meets early 2000's Neptunes, with some major Dilla and Kanye influence with a sprinkle of Lex Lugar and a hidden desire to sound like washed out.
Q: Which artist would you like to work with and why?
A: Dr.Dre. He makes good artists great, and he works on all aspects of a record form production to finished product which is how I like to work.
Q: Can you share one music production tip?
A: When mixing use a High Pass filter EQ on every track that doesn't the extreme low end frequencies .... It's a basic move but removing unnecessary low end is a good start to a pro sounding mix.
Q: What type of music do you usually work on?
A: Hip hop, Rock, Punk, Pop, EDM, Blues, R&B
Q: What's your strongest skill?
Q: What do you bring to a song?
A: I bring emotion to a song. I bring the emotion out of a song, and become emotionally attached to the songs I work on. It's because I'm super passionate about producing the best finished product possible.
Q: What's your typical work process?
A: When mixing I base what I do on the song. It's never a paint by numbers situation. I get the vibe of the song and the artists vision, then I chip away at the audio slab of marble until I have David. My Production is based on feeling. Songs I produce what my vibe is at the time or a specific mood that's requested by the client.
Q: Tell us about your studio setup.
A: Hardware sequencer, synthesizer, turntable, and Lots of Vinyl for producing. A colorful sounding mic and pa that will go unnamed. Macbook Pro 2017, Pro Tools 12, Waves plugins, Izotope plugins
Q: What other musicians or music production professionals inspire you?
A: Dr. Dre, Kanye West, Young Guru, Dave Pensado, Kirt Shearer, Pharrell Willams, No I.D., Jay Z, J Dilla, 2 Pac
Q: Describe the most common type of work you do for your clients.
A: Mixing song sessions for bands and artists. Production and remixing.