HOMETOWN: Chicago, IL
SPECIALTY/STYLE: Detroit Techno, Chicago House
TOOLS OF CHOICE: Pro Tools HD, Ableton Live, Spectrasonics Stylus RMX
YEARS PRODUCING MUSIC PRE-PYRAMIND: A long time as a DJ, 4 years producing
Describe your experience at Pyramind. What teachers had the biggest impact on you?
My experience at Pyramind was nothing short of amazing. It seemed like I would walk out of each class knowing twice as much as the day before. Completing everything in less than a year was sometimes difficult, but worth it. The instructors there were all very accessible if you needed any help.
It’s hard to say which instructors had the biggest impact on me. As a whole the faculty there is excellent. Every one of them seemed to enjoy teaching as much as I enjoyed learning. If I had to choose one of them, I’d have to say that it was Haroun Serang. Music Theory is tough and Haroun doesn’t make it easy on you. He really puts the pressure on you to learn things his way and fast. Not only did I learn a lot about theory in a short amount of time, but his teaching style prepared me for what I would be in for when I set out to work in this industry.
How did your experience at Pyramind impact your writing/creative process?
Studying at Pyramind greatly impacted my writing/creative process by introducing structure to my workflow, in all areas, from finding inspiration all the way through to mastering a project. Having that structure gives me the ability to concentrate on what I want to do as opposed to how I’m going to do it.
What are your biggest musical influences?
My first musical influences would be the DJs and producers I listened to and grew up around in Chicago. People like Derrick Carter, Mystic Bill, Traxx, DJ Rush, Farley, etc. Watching how they could move a crowd playing music that, at the time, was still very unknown to most people. It’s hard not to want to be part of that. The music I was listening to ranged from rock and punk to house, techno, hip-hop, new beat, etc. All very DIY styles of music that helped me realize that I could do this if I really wanted to. Now my influences vary from the people I work with to who ever I’m listening to at the moment, soundtrack composers to minimal techno producers. The list would be endless.
How did you land the Sony gig? Please describe your experience at Sony and how it has impacted you.
I was fortunate to have been asked by Matt if I would be interested in a chance at an internship at Sony Computer Entertainment America. I went for an interview and got the position. The internship was great. I was working everyday with a group of very talented people in facilities I never thought I’d have access to a couple of years ago. I learned a lot in those four months. I’m very excited to be working there now as a Music Production Associate. Still learning something new everyday from all the incredible producers, engineers and composers I get to work with.
What are you future plans?
Right now I’m pretty content with my present situation. I’ve only been at Sony for 6 months and plan on staying as long as I can. My future plans, at this point, involve me doing whatever I have to build on my skills as a producer and engineer.
Any other thoughts comments on your Pyramind experience?
No. Can’t think of anything else right now. And I have to get to a session at Skywalker Sound. Thanks Matt.