Hi, I'm Charlie Westropp, a Producer/Writer/Mixer working out of my studio in East London. I have produced, mixed and written for several artists over my 15 year career, working with them to help find and focus their sound, and go on to achieve success both in the UK and internationally.
Charlie Westropp began his music life making earl gray and occasionally sound engineering, at Matrix Studios in London’s West End, before stints doing the same at the Strongrooms in Shoreditch and Sphere Studios, Battersea.
Having cut his teeth at those prestigious London Studios Charlie was now making the best tea in London, and his engineering was decent too, which led to his feeling that the time was right to take the plunge and set up solo, whilst continuing his musical education with a Masters at London College Of Music, where he met to-be-bandmate Owen Taylor. They formed 'The Operators' and were signed to B-Unique management in 2008.
Charlie continued to expand his horizons, in co-forming Electro – Grunge duo Bluebell with Annabel Jones, and also became a key member of Northern renaissance man, Rob Cowen’s band too.
Whilst being an active member of these bands, Charlie also co-wrote and produce tracks for some of the top young talent the UK had to offer with artists like Saint Raymond (‘Fall At Your Feet’, 'Letting Go'), Gabrielle Aplin, Orla Gartland, Lawrence Fox, Cameron Bloomfield, Ralfy, Nym etc...
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Interview with Charlie Westropp
Q: Which artist would you like to work with and why?
A: I love what Nigel Godrich did with Paul McCartney on 'Fine Line'. Taking those artists who have been there and done it, and bringing them back full-circle would be great. Elton John has such an extensive back-catalogue of such a high quality - would be great to revisit some of the 70's sounds/orchestration with an artist like that.
Q: What was your career path? How long have you been doing this?
A: I started off 15 years ago working as a tea boy in the Matrix, West End. I then moved on to Sphere in Battersea, and the Strongroom in Shoreditch, going it alone after that, whilst also doing a degree and Masters in Music Technology at London College of Music. I've been in a few bands (The Operators, Rob Cowen, Bluebell) but always found myself coming back to the studio environment where I've felt most comfortable.
Q: Can you share one music production tip?
A: It's all about the song!
Q: What type of music do you usually work on?
A: It varies massively. I've had most success with Indy/Pop, but I'm currently working on a Trap/Hip-Hop/Gospel crossover. I love working in different genres as it keeps things fresh and interesting, and there's always something I can bring to the table, and learn from the artists I work with too.
Q: What's your strongest skill?
A: In the main, Artists work with me more than once, which I take as something of a complement! Whilst I think this may be down to my technical ability, I also think that creating a comfortable environment in which to create is part of that too.
Q: What do you bring to a song?
A: Having worked across several different genres, the brief is always different, so it's very much about listening to the client and what they're trying to convey. I then help make that vision a reality. It's often about interpreting what the artist is feeling, and applying that in a more technical way to the song, whether writing, producing or mixing.
Q: What's your typical work process?
A: If I'm writing with an artist, we usually spend a day or 2 honing and tracking ideas. Taking the lead from the client, I'll then produce up the track(s) and submit a mix. The dialogue is always open with the artist, it's their song and I always want to do it justice.
Q: Tell us about your studio setup.
A: When I moved to East London a couple of years back, I set up my studio in my basement, but sound isolation was not ideal, so I moved into a purpose-built studio in my garden. I use my analog gear (Neumann Mic's, mind print and UA pre's) to get the best possible sound the my way in to my DAW of choice (Logic for writing, but I'm a big fan of Pro Tools and Ableton for other jobs). It's the perfect environment for tracking, producing and mixing.
Q: What other musicians or music production professionals inspire you?
A: Max Martin as a writer/producer - whether you like pop or not, his ability to move with the times is phenomenal!
Q: Describe the most common type of work you do for your clients.
A: Songwriting, production and mixing