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Recording Connection Students Get Hired


New Success Stories Coming in Every Week!

These Recording Connection graduates are now working in the audio recording and music producing business because of the education they received and the connections they made through our school. Some are now Chief Engineers, others are recording studio owners, and still others are producing.

Recording Connection gets you in the door of a real studio where the action happens. We open the door, we make the connection, and we train you. If you are hard-working and motivated, this could be you one day soon. "The proof is in the pudding," as the saying goes; these stories are proof that you, too, can live your dream. Please read on:

Power of Relationships: Recording Connection student Dez Ward learns from a Grammy-winning mentor

One of the most powerful parts of the Recording Connection experience is the opportunity for students not only to make connections, but also to build ongoing relationships with their mentors. This has paid off big-time for Recording Connection student Dez Ward, whose relationship with his mentor (a Grammy-winning producer/engineer) has resulted in some amazing experiences. […]

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Recording Connection student Jones Nelson finds himself in the big leagues

When vocalist and blues guitarist Jones Nelson moved to Nashville to break into the music industry, he knew he needed two things: to polish his mixing skills and to get connected within the business. That’s why he enrolled in the Recording Connection. But little did he know at the time just where that opportunity would […]

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Recording Connection student Jordan Robertson: burgeoning music producer

Jordan Robertson of Baton Rouge, Louisiana has loved music as long as he can remember: “I bet I have music notes in my DNA,” he says. From an early age, he says, he was plucking out movie themes on the piano, and took an interest in producing music for film. As he came of age, […]

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Recording Connection student Coke Youngblood branches out!

Since he was a teenager, Coke Youngblood was serious about building a music industry career as a songwriter/producer—so serious, in fact, that when he came of age, he moved from Texas to Los Angeles, CA to pursue it. He started by getting his foot in the door in the licensing and marketing department at Interscope […]

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Recording Connection student Chingas Kemps: one step back, three steps forward

From a certain perspective, it seemed like Chingas Kempas was already on his way to a successful career as an audio engineer. Self-taught from his teenage years, he says he had worked a former hobby into making actual income in his own part-time professional studio in New Jersey, recording a string of local and regional […]

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Heather Crawford (“DJ Zienna”) takes it to the next level

By most accounts, Heather Crawford was already on her way to music industry success. A young, self-taught club DJ who gigged under the moniker “DJ Zienna,” at a fairly young age she’d already honed her skills and promoted herself to the point of spinning at a regular Hollywood residency, and even landed a few respectable […]

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Recording apprentice Orlando Gomez gets in on the ground floor

Not only does learning as an apprentice give you access to other professionals in the industry, but as Recording Connection student Orlando Gomez found out, it can also get you in the door of a ground-floor opportunity with an up-and-coming studio. When Orlando enrolled in the Recording Connection, his primary purpose was to get hired—so […]

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Recording Connection graduate Eric Gonzalez lands a job at a major studio!

Recording Connection graduate Eric Gonzalez offers key advice to other students as they complete their apprenticeships: “Once they’re done with the program, if they don’t happen to get a job at that studio they’re apprenticing at, don’t stop,” he says. “Google studios. Send them emails. Because who knows? That one email can be that one […]

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In-studio training helps Charles Huston launch his career

From an early age, Chicago-based Recording Connection student Charles Huston knew he belonged in the recording studio. “My whole life I’ve kinda been a tech head…a gear luster,” he says. “My dad actually comes from the old L.A. record industry. My Dad’s been having me in and out of a few studios my whole life. […]

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Chris Litwin: From senior mechanic to studio owner

Singer/Songwriter Lindsey Kappa adds music engineering to her skills

“I knew when I was 14 that being a musician wasn’t always a guarantee,” says Recording Connection apprentice Lindsey Kappa.. “So I ended up going to a concert for my cousin’s band, and after the show he recommended, ‘Hey, why don’t you check out sound while you start trying to pursue your music career?’” It […]

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Recording Connection graduate Devin Zorn: developing a “signature” sound

Spend a few minutes talking with Recording Connection graduate Devin Zorn, and it’s apparent that he’s got some very specific opinions about sound and audio in the music he records and mixes. Take, for example, his own band The Q, which he describes as “if Pink Floyd made a dance album.” The band’s sound is […]

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Two Recording Connection students form a “Clever Empire”

Tanner Bjorklund (“T-Strix”) was a gifted teenage rap artist who attended the Recording Connection because he wanted to try and record his own music. After graduating, he had the skills he needed, but as an artist, he still found it challenging to be both in front of the board and behind it. Rodolfo Lopez (“R-Lo”) […]

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Recording Connection graduate Mike Messina: Guided by Passion and Opportunity

“I’ve honestly been interested in sound since I was like five years old,” says Mike Messina. “I just screw around with sound effects and music—sound effects from movies, video games, animation—I’ve been doing that most of my life…I’d put a sign on my [bedroom] door saying, “Recording session in progress, do not disturb.’” Looking for […]

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Jake Kiyokane lands paid gigs at his mentor's studio!

Apprenticing at Serenity West Recording in Los Angeles, Recording Connection master’s program student Jake Kiyokane has learned an important secret to breaking into the recording industry: be available as much as possible, even beyond the lessons. “I started just putting myself out there more a little bit,” he says, “just hitting them up more, like, […]

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Recording Connection graduate Garrett Pace: HIRED!

Never presume. This is one of the biggest lessons to take away from the story of Recording Connection grad Garrett Pace, because at first glance he seemed the most unlikely student to get hired by his mentor. Classically trained as a singer and multi-instrumentalist, Garrett held a bachelor’s degree in music and seemed poised to […]

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Recording Connection Apprentice lands Job at Mentor's Studio in Corpus Christie, TX

Perhaps nothing is a better birthday present for any aspiring audio engineer than a job offer and that’s exactly what Jacob Keithley of Corpus Christi, TX, got just days before turning 22! While some apprentices start Recording Connection knowing exactly what they want to do and which areas they want to focus on, others like […]

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Recording Connection Graduate Sebastian Lefeld Works with Santana, Shawn Mendes!

“Whenever I take a break,” says Recording Connection graduate Sebastian Lefeld, “I’m always thinking there’s someone else out there who’s doing what I do who’s not taking a break, and I get back to work.” It’s this very work ethic that not only helped Sebastian make the most of his Recording Connection apprenticeship, but also […]

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Thomas Dante: From Apprentice to Paid Staff Engineer in Houston!

It’s something we tell all our students: when you apprentice in a real recording studio with a mentor, you’re not only learning audio engineering—you’re auditioning for a job. Impress your mentor, and he might just hire you! That’s exactly how Thomas Dante played it, which is how he landed an ongoing job in Houston, Texas […]

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Recording Connection Student Opens Recording Studio in Nashville!

When John Curtis signed up to apprentice with Ric Web at South Studios, little did he know that within less than a year, he’d be running a recording studio of his own but that’s exactly what happened. Getting into a real studio and learning the craft was dream come true for John who, in his […]

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Taylor Crommie, Los Angeles, CA

Talk to any famous musician, producer or audio engineer and ask them what they have to say about learning, about growing creatively and technically and chances are, they’ll all tell you, learning is a lifelong pursuit. The people who make it are always growing, always gaining exposure to as many sounds and musical worlds as […]

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Recording graduate Alex Arnold quits job, launches career!

Sometimes, you have to close one door before another one opens. And sometimes the connections you make now will come back to help you in the future! Recording Connection graduate Alex Arnold learned this firsthand when his former Recording Connection mentor called him up a year later with a job offer—a job that enabled Alex […]

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Nacor Zuluaga Beats the Odds at New York City's Engine Room Audio

Despite a language barrier that would have deterred some people, Recording Connection apprentice Nacor Zuluaga’s commitment to the craft of audio engineering not only gained the trust of his mentor, master engineer Mark Christensen, but also landed him a job working with his mentor long past his apprenticeship! Nacor was slated to start audio engineering […]

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Dallas, TX recording apprentice Ayaz Ismail releases Bollywood-style album with help from industry veteran Rick Rooney!

Learning on-the-job definitely has its advantages—for example, the opportunity to have a seasoned industry veteran help you produce your own music! Ayaz Ismail of Dallas, TX experienced this firsthand when his mentor, music industry veteran Rick Rooney at Planet Dallas, worked with Ismail to help record and release his own full-length Bollywood-style album! Titled Is […]

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Living in the Moment - Checking in with Engineering Graduate Clint Badal

Clint Badal is a recent graduate of the Recording Engineering program at the Recording Connection. Clint has stated that his mentor was not only very professional, but also that he really knows his stuff and wants his apprentices to be as knowledgeable as he is about audio engineering. In their workshops together, Clint’s mentor devoted […]

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Recording Connection Student Opens "Blue Creek Productions"

Dustin Bannister is a Recording engineer from about an hour and half from St. Louis, Missouri in a town called Patton. While still enrolled in the Recording Connection Program Dustin successfully opened his own studio called “Blue Creek Productions” in March 2013. During his time at the studio, Dustin had the awesome opportunity to work […]

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Mentor: Matt Stein, Brooklyn, NY

One on One: A Formula for Success Matt Stein is no stranger to success in the recording industry. In 2005, he was nominated for a Grammy award and has overseen Swan7 studio, which he founded and was recently featured in “L Magazine.” In addition to his years of experience in production and mixing, he has […]

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My TIme with Uncle J - Brandon Skylar

by Brandon Skylar, Bethlehem, PA The Recording Connection has taught me a few things. One, I didn’t know jack about audio before I attended. (No pun intended). Two, workers in the entertainment business are some of the most hospitable people I’ve ever met and finally, three, If you apply yourself and take every opportunity that […]

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Richard Sawchuk Finds Success After Graduating from the Recording Connection

I grew up with music. My father was a square dance caller and my older brother was very active as a keyboard player and vocalist. I took 4 years of Royal Conservatory piano and theory when I was quite young and went on to drumming at age 10. My brother, David, went on to audio […]

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Work with your mentor in real studio sessions

"As we brought in more clients to the recording studio I matured in the sense that I felt more prepared for the next duty or session. You know, it's just as long as sessions kept coming I was able to add what I learned the previous session and it was almost as though I could […]

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Anthony Zuniga - Recording Connection Graduate Success Story

Before coming across the Recording Connection, I was currently attending a private college for something I was okay at and interested in. While in college I got a part-time job, and at the job I met some people that were into music and where going to school for it. I found myself around them (co-workers) […]

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Todd Talbot Returns to the Classroom After a 20 Year Break

Just like with other higher education programs, the Recording Connection is open to adults looking to get a grip on how music is recorded industry wide. Read what Todd Talbot, 42 from Denver, CO had to say about his time in the program. "Having the opportunity to be in the studio and working on stuff, […]

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Darlene Pech - Recording Connection Student

We pride ourselves in many things here at the Recording Connection. While many of our students capitalize on the opportunities we provide or paid employment, during and after our program, we have much more to be proud of as well. As simple as it might sound we take great pride in knowing that what we […]

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Rachael Kylie - Recording Connection Student

In our effort to highlight the achievements of our students the Recording Connection interviewed one of our our, Rachael Kylie of Taylorsville, Utah to hear share how she is making the most of her talents and opportunities. When getting started with the program: "It was awesome, like I loved it right away. I was excited […]

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Lilly Carey works with Legendary Singer / Songwriter Roberta Flack.

When Lilly started taking the program she: “thought it was really cool. My first or second week I ended up meeting Roberta Flack… (later) Penn Badgley… He came in to record a song for his movie about Jeff Buckley. That was really cool because he;s a pretty big celebrity… Elizabeth Chan, she has this pretty […]

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November 2011 Reviews from our Students and Graduates

November 18, 2011 Success Stories Work along side the music professionals. “This week with my mentor has been amazing. Actually, every week so far has been. The first week I had very little confidence in what I was doing due to all the technical jargon, as well as just overall complexities within a professional recording […]

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Neil Schultz - Recording Connection Graduate

Ever since I first picked up a guitar in Junior High I have always been musically inclined.  I can remember making my very first recording way back then in garage on a 2-way boom box with just me and my band.  This was, looking back, the very beginnings of my experiences with music.  As I […]

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Kyle Thurman works with Grammy Award Winning Artist, Norman Brown

Many people work their entire lives hoping for a chance to worm a real recording session, to know their work is going to help an artist share his or her voice with the public. When the opportunity comes knocking, we are confident our students can step up and produce great works. Kyle Thurman is one […]

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Checking in with Recording Connection Student Matt Baker

When asked to honestly describe his experience with his mentor so far, Matt Baker had his to say: "It's been really good, I've learned a lot a lot about ProTools and also at my house I use some (recording) software which is a little different (than Pro Tools) but it's good to know all the […]

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Shoneen Stenftenagel Shares Her Experiences with Recording Connection

The Recording Connection truly believes our students have an opportunity to achieve something special while attending our program. Whether a member can take full advantage of this opportunity lies in his or her hands. To help illustrate this, we asked Shoneen Steftenagel of Saint Anthony, IN to share some of her experiences after having completed […]

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Brian Piper: Recording Connection Success Story

Brian Piper first came to the Recording Connection looking for more hands-on experience than he was getting at the university where he had enrolled in an audio production program. “I did learn a lot,” he says, “but it wasn't real world. It wasn't real life.” When he looked at the Recording Connection website and realized […]

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Anthony Opher - Recording Connection Student

While many join our program to work in studios we provide many have already found success in other fields and are looking to improve upon the skills they need and other endeavors. We are proud to say our program can open the most doors for our graduates and are happy to share their varying experiences. […]

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Quotes from Our Students

January 23, 2016 Student Quotes

Before The Venture

“I have completed reading the inductionary portions of my Active Textbook and I’m ready to begin my journey into the world of professional audio engineering. At first I figured I’d give RRFC a go because it appealed to me as an economically sound alternative to a university for getting some valuable knowledge under my belt. I quickly realized however that this course has the potential to be something far more significant to my future (I cannot say for certain at this point as I had just begun). To give you an idea of where I currently stand before diving into a single chapter: I have been recording, mixing and mastering tracks for myself and friends for the better part of 4 years now and I’ve been a music buff for far longer than that. I have my own formula and methodology for bringing ideas into this world as works of art as I imagine any self-taught individual probably would and I’m eager to finally work with industrial-grade equipment in a professional environment.

I plan on becoming a full-time audio engineer within the next 2 years following my admittance into RRFC. I also plan to kick off my career as an artist in the Hip-Hop industry as a side project. I am fortunate to have stumbled upon RRFC as a doorway into my dream career by running through my Facebook feed oddly enough one day. I am a fairly logical person so I presume it to be lucky chance though even I am inclined to believe that higher powers are at work here. I plan on keeping a rather detailed account of my experiences throughout this course from the eBook, to the studio and beyond, as a testament to the quality of education that this course has provided me as well as maybe a few good tips and tricks others may find handy with their craft.

I look forward to everything RRFC has to throw at me and I’m determined to break into the industry at whatever the cost. I would also like to thank the staff of RRFC in advance for working with me patiently to make this opportunity a reality, I really owe you guys!”

January 2016

January 30, 2016 Student Quotes

I learned SO MUCH in a matter of minutes

“OK in a matter of words I will try to contain my excitement…. Well I tried. I was super excited to walk into the Record Plant and began working with my mentor Patrizio!!!! I learned SO MUCH in a matter of minutes watching how the professionals do it. Let me tell you it was a huge eye opener. I was given an assignment to do and based on what I observed I went home very excited to begin work. The 1st visit was 1 on 1 training.

The Second Visit went very well, it made me happy to see Patrizio pleased with the work I had done. I was able to have 2hrs of observing him work with the engineer on a project. I watched every screen, effect, and plugin they used. I was so impressed with the workflow and how seamless the achieved the goal together. Afterwards 1 got in 1hr and a half of 1 on 1 time to go over my previous assignment. I was a sponge and put to use what I learned before. The next assignment is a bit more challenging so hopefully I will do well again. I love it!!!!!!!”

January 2016

Intro to new software and a catchy jam!

“This week’s lesson material was an introduction to the very powerful software, Pro Tools. Pro Tools is the industry standard in audio found in music, TV, and movies. There is a chance that you hear something every day that somehow went through Pro Tools! Fun Fact- The first song to reach number 1 on the charts was Ricky Martin’s 1999 hit, Livin’ La Vida Loca. I don’t even know where to begin with what it can do! This seems a little bit overwhelming learning a new software after already working with FL Studio for 5 years already. I know that with the material, links, and help that Recording Connection provides, I know that I will be able to grasp this software after working with it over time! I received my copy of Pro Tools last week and am ready to dive into learning this software! After nailing another quiz this week, it was time to go back to the studio with Boo!

This week, Boo and I started off by working on mixing a drum track for an artist who has been out of the music industry for a good while now. I’m not sure if I’m allowed to say who this artist is, but he has new material to be released since his last release in the 80’s! We spent a good bit of the allotted time working on mixing the drum track for this song. I know that I’m ready for it to be released! I was tapping my foot along with the track the whole time. I still have the song stuck in my head! We also did some work on the vocals for the song, adding delay and fixing the automation levels. Once the work on the vocals was done, Boo and I recorded a tambourine track for some extra drive in the song. After we worked on this 80’s sounding rock track, a guitar player came in and recorded some parts for tracks that needed parts. We set up the amp in the recording room and patched the guitar in from the control room. The songs were originals and covers. One of the covers was one of my favorite songs from the 90’s, Hard to Handle by Black Crowes! It was another great week of learning with Recording Connection and Boo at Knothole Recording Studio!”

Here we go. This is what I’ve been waiting for.

“Here we go. This is what I’ve been waiting for. Since I was fifteen, when I knew I wanted to be an engineer and producer, I researched education options and found this program and couldn’t wait to apply and get started. Now I’m here! This journey is going to be amazing, an incredible experience with so much professional and personal growth to be had. I’m absorbing everything coming my way.

The first scheduled session with my mentor Pierre, who is awesome and super knowledgeable, was intended to go over lesson one. When I got to the studio I learned that a last minute tracking session was taking place. So instead of going over my lesson I got to dive in and observe the tracking session of an alternative rock band which was just as good if not better than the lesson planned! I got to see firsthand the workflow of an engineer and how the engineer communicates with the client to achieve the goals of the session. Pierre guided me through the moves he was making on ProTools as the band tracked which was cool, I got to see various plug ins and ask questions on what each plug in did to a track. Afterwards, when the vocalist was finishing up with Pierre, I pulled back the mics that were used for the drums and disconnected and wrapped the mic cables. After that I got to intern at the Rehearsal Works facility. Bo really showed me the ropes and I saw what his job is like at Rehearsal Works. We organized each Rehearsal space, making sure each room was neat and organized and had the proper equipment needed for bands to practice. We also moved a drum kit back into the tracking room in the studio. That first session was amazing because I got firsthand experience with the workflow of an engineer as well as familiarizing myself with the equipment.

The next session consisted of going over the first lesson: sound and hearing. Pierre showed me the patch bay of the analog console that is being rebuilt in the studio which was cool to see. We then started up the IO’s and the computer and dove into the lesson. That first lesson was great because Pierre helped me understand the concepts that I was having a hard time grasping such as phase, phase shift, mono and stereo sources and sound perception. He really explained sound in such a way that made sense in my mind, such as how binary information is turned into sound and how we perceive those sounds. Something really insightful that I took away from that first lesson was that as an engineer you have to be a critical listener, how are the dynamics, what instruments are you hearing, where are those instruments, are they in the front or back, left or right? This first lesson clicked for the most part and I’m very glad it did. I can’t wait to dig deeper and gain more of an understanding of this crazy thing we call recording!”

Axioms and Accolades

“I have now reached the middle of the course, and things are running like a well-oiled machine. I understand how a studio earns its own identity, how to troubleshoot in a variety of environments, and how to interact with professional clients and colleagues. The practical journey will seemingly ramp up, while the theoretical aspects of the chapters’ interplay always coax good practices.

It is easy to get excited about finishing the course with flying colors and great references, but I am really grounded in the present and appreciate the day-to-day activities. The routines have to be learned, the solid practices need to become second nature, and the skills must be retained. I enjoy the plethora of styles you see with the producers and recording artists. My mentor is very humble, despite some big name clientele and a history of music involvement; and that continually inspires me to do my best and nothing less. The whole Recording Connection experience has been awe inspiring, so I am glad to share the stories with my family and peers”

Getting comfortable with the plugins and virtual instruments that come with Pro Tools

“Really got into depth with plugins with my mentor this week, different kinds, their functions, what situations they work best in, etc. Also discussed inserts and sends more, as well as bouncing, freezing, and automation. I got to sit in on a hip hop mixing session which tied in great with this chapter. Basically the songs were just plain tracks (vocals, add libs, and beat) with no effects so it helped me learn what to do to really make a song sound rich, full, and unique. I’ve been getting comfortable with the plugins and virtual instruments that come with Pro Tools and am having a lot of fun applying what I’m learning into my own music.”

It was a good week and helped me learn more.

“This week I went in twice to the studio and both times learned plenty of things. The first time was learning more on mixing. Josh was just about to start a mix so I got to watch the whole process for him from the beginning. He would explain what effects he would use and why to me in detail. We would solo each track and listen to the difference of every change he would apply to the song. The second time a hip hop artist came in and I got to help them record vocals and guitar parts. It was a good week and helped me learn more what to do with the chapter I just completed.”

January 2016

Timing is everything

“Steve taught me how to fold up cables the right way, vs. the wrong way which leads to knots and time wasted. I have continued to practice folding cables in preparation for live shows and studio work when cables need to be uncoiled immediately. Timing is everything and that crucial step of folding cables is something that isn’t taught in recording schools typically. Steve is currently working on 3 albums and single tracks for artists. I have been observing what he is doing in Protools to bring out the singers in the mix and to make a song stand out. The dude is a genius and I write down everything he says. I don’t want a piece of information left behind.”

February 6, 2016 Student Quotes

Got to the studio and right away got into mixing.

“John loaded a gospel group that someone had sent him in the past to mix. First off he had me label all 50+ tracks then place them in the order we have been working with. Drums and percussion first followed by bass guitar, piano, keyboard, organ, strings, guitars, and finally 6 different vocalist duplicated 4 times each. Next John had me put the tracks in to groups and also make a master fader for each group. After this I mixed the levels and added compression to master fader to effect the whole recording. Before my session was over I started to add EQ and compression to the individual tracks. I didn’t get to finish and John said we would work on the rest of it in the next mixing session. I liked that John told me to add a little compression to the overall mix in the beginning. I think it really helped out making everything blend well.”

January 9, 2016 Student Quotes

Digital Textbook

“I really enjoyed learning through a digital version of the textbook. Because it is a lot easier for me to understand and to take good notes being able to highlight right on the page so I can always find my more important notes. Also I love having the links to different websites to better understand and still going in to depth of that certain subject. So far so good! I really like this school especially on helpful the staff is that is a big deal to me.”

I have talked to the studio and I may be able to stay on doing some assistant engineering and marketing for them!

“Well time has been flying by, and I am in the studio more and more! I feel like I’m in a pretty weird place. I’m learning so much so quickly… but then at the same time I feel like I don’t know anything. This was the first week that I felt like what I was doing was actually applicable to my future as an audio engineer. The studio had tracked and mixed a track from this weekend with The House of Lewis (who had actually won the studio time from a rap battle pretty big in the SLC scene). He took off all the effects, inserts, and sends that he had put on before and just said “K have at it!” I got to patch in a hardware EQ, distortion, and compression. I had so much fun and it finally felt like it was real! Like this is my future!

I had a blast recording! The band was awesome, and I just got to be there from tracking to final mix! I am loving school more and more! I am beginning to realize that it will end soon. I have talked to the studio and I may be able to stay on doing some assistant engineering and marketing for them! Things are looking up! I would never be here if it weren’t for the Reording Connection… so grateful I stumbled on them in my internet searches. What I have learned through their program is career building! Being in a studio is the way to go when learning about audio engineering. My mentor is a freakin ninja! I got really lucky to learn from someone who is so good at what he does and I can’t imagine learning from a professor in a classroom over someone who loves what he does and does it every day to put food on the table. Can’t wait for next week!”

Learning what a finished song should sound like and what I need to do to get it there.

“As soon as I got to Soul Haven Hall today John threw me in studio B and had me mix the song “All You Need” from the reggae group Strange Roots. There were drums, percussion, 2 guitars, 2 saxophones, vocals, group vocals, 2 keyboards and bass guitar. All in all about 30 tracks. I edited a couple drum fills but most of my time was spent on adding EQ and compression where needed. John popped in and out giving me a couple suggestions like re-amping the bass track and adding compression and EQ to the whole mix using the appropriate signal chain. When I was done we compared my mix to Johns mix of the same song and talked about the differences. Hearing what he did on the mix after I was done mine helped a lot with learning what a finished song should sound like and what I need to do to get it there.”

Yes, I had two full studio sessions this week!

“Week 4 material is an idea that I’ve understood for several years now, that is Connectivity of modules found in a studio. I’ve been working with the many different types of cables for about 3 years now, so I already had a head start on learning the material. As a gigging DJ of almost 3 years and music producer of 5 years, I’ve worked with 1/4 inch TRS cables, RCA cables, and XLR Mic cables in many situations. I also took a music technology class in college that covered the same ideas. Digital information was also covered in this week’s material. Digital information is sent through everyday USB cables and (the not so every day) MIDI cables. I had no problem acing this week’s quiz! But before taking the quiz for this section, I had some extra studio time with Boo!

Yes, I had two full studio sessions this week! The first session went along perfectly with covering the lesson material, as Boo and I set up eight different microphones around a full drum set for tracking! A drum track was needed for one of the tracks that Boo had started with one of his clients. The drummer came in and set up the kit while Boo and I gathered the correct mics and cables to plug them into the patch bay for the TDIF. Once the kit was set up and mic levels were set, it was time for recording! The drummer played the track two times through to decide what we were going to use for the final product. Two more great hours of learning!

The start of the second session, on my regular time and day, began with tuning some vocal harmonies. That didn’t take long between Boo and I working together to see exactly where the harmonies had to be placed. After that, I was back in the hot seat for more instrument recording! Boo and I added tambourine, shaker, and bass guitar tracks to finish up another track for one of Boo’s clients! Another great week of learning and recording!”

November 7, 2015 Student Quotes

Already made me a better musician, as well as an engineer.

“I just completed the Chapter 13 quiz on Equalization, and am still working on the mix(es). I’m focusing on the rock track provided for the assignment and it’s going nicely so far; I’m looking forward to trying out the other songs as well just for practice’s sake.

At the studio today, we recorded a new demo by Roy Hale and did some further work on a song that we’d previously worked on with him. Randy added bass and keys, and will probably add some more instrumentation in as well next time. I really enjoy getting the opportunity to ask questions on musical aspects outside of recording; seeing different chord inversions and theory applied, and being able to get clarification when I need it, has already made me a better musician, as well as an engineer. “

November Update

We are currently in Chapter 6 working through mircophone placement. It has been great all of the hands on time I have been able to get being in the studio with John. Last week we set up and miked the drum kit. I was able to play and record samples of drums and listen to the difference of the sound when the microphones were placed or moved around. I was able to see what sound we wanted to capture and what the final placement for that sound was. I look forward to setting up the guitar cabinet and piano microphone placements!

Already found out something I didn’t know!

It’s a very good thing my mentor is a drummer like myself. My drum sound is going to be great! Our first lesson we mic’d up a kit (very simple; kick, 2 overheads, and top/bottom snare mics) and my mentor showed me what the deal is with overheads and why people have phase issues. Why I have phase issues.

I’ve always been told to put overhead mics parallel and equal distances from each other, which is still good, but if your not careful the mic’s will cancel each other out. Chapter 1 said the same thing with waves that are flipped 180 degrees cancel the other out. I’ve spent a lot of time in reaper and logic trying to figure out why my overheads sound bad or are quiet when they should be loud.

I took this home and oh my god what a difference. Same goes with the bottom snare mic (which I’ve been stupidly underestimating). Especially with the particular snare I’m using (a GMS brass/maple hybrid) it was very, very beneficial to use the top mic to gain all my warmth and body, the natural overtones of the drum/head and to use the bottom to get the brightness and actual “snare” sound of my wires against the resonant head.

Can’t wait to learn more!

November 2015

I cant wait to see where this takes me in my future.

“Week 1 went pretty good, I was nervous at first but once I got comfortable and relaxed Rick made everything seem so easy and thourough. Rick taught me have to track out mics to the channels on the mixing board, and send them to Pro Tools on the computer. I also learned to que in the headphones and seperate the mix in the studio from the headphones out in the booth. The beginning chapter in this program was really interesting. Learning about the human ear and how sound waves react was very nice. I already feel smarter and more comfortable with my own projects after just one week in the program. I cant wait to see where this takes me in my future.”

Here we go folks!

“This past week has been a very exciting and interesting week for sure. It was so thrilling to be back in the studio on Monday… it was very refreshing to be able to be where I was comfortable and have had so many fun times, and continue to have fun times there too of course. Working with [my mentor] has always been a blast and it continues to be one. I will be recording a family friend and his band this coming Monday and I have super stoked for sure. I’ve been told I will basically be heading up the entire project and [my mentor] will be watching me to make sure I’m doing things right, (and probably correcting me if something’s not right haha.) and that is absolutely thrilling to do a recording project all by myself in the live working studio. I have recently been contacted about being mentioned in an upcoming newsletter with The Recording Connection (which has over 80,000 subscribers–Yes you read that, eight and then four zeros!) and I feel very honored to receive an article being rewritten about me and that is extremely exciting.”

My mentor is great about letting me help out

“This week I got to learn how to edit a session by taking out all the clicks, pops, and other unwanted noises. It was pretty cool for me to learn that. Another thing this week was we recorded a full band. I found that to be interesting and also very educational for me to be in that enviroment. My mentor is great about letting me help out and getting to experience the day to day feel of being an engineer. Thanks Anthony!”

I just finished taking my midterm; aced it, woohoo!

“So far I’ve really enjoyed the whole course, from the way the lessons are laid out, to the multimedia aspects of the textbook and the comments that other students have added. I’m really excited about opening up the job placement aspect of the program so I can make some further decisions as to how best to move forward.

The most recent studio session was finishing up mixes on two songs for a previous client; the tracks consisted of two vocalists and an assortment of MIDI instruments (drums, piano, bass, strings, and an accordion). It was a good exercise in using plugins to soften some of the harsher aspects of MIDI instruments and get a more realistic sound. Now I’m looking forward to finishing up the other big mix of real instrumentation we’ve been working on!”

October 10, 2015 Student Quotes

Never be afraid to fail at something new

“This chapter over mic placement was very good food for thought. Even though they recommand certain mics for recording certain instruments and vocals I think it is wise to keep those as “safe points” and not be afraid to venture past that, each ear is different and each mic can perform better at different dbs. Never be afraid to fail at something new, it only means you are trying what others won’t attempt.”

The suspense is killing me!

“My second lesson in the studio was amazing! I got to sit first hand and watch my mentor Patrick record bass and drums in the studio for this group that he is currently working with. It was stunning to see how the process worked. The beginning was rather tedious but as it continued I became more and more intruged with the process. I can’t wait to return and begin working on my own material.”

I’m Networking!

“So yesterday I was observing a tracking session and when it was done I had a conversation with one of the other students that was there and he told me he makes beats. I make beats as well and we got each other’s phone numbers in case wanted to do collaborations and stuff. When I left the studio I bumped into the Bass player from the tracking session on the elevator. We spoke as I walked to the train and apparently he used to be a recording connection student as well who found a job a recording firm. Things are really starting to look up.”

He’s a great teacher and cant wait to get to the next session!

“My second session with Donny was cool he familiarized my surroundings in the studio. We went over the difference of digital circuits and analog circuits. along with that we sat in front of the mixer and went over alternating and direct current. He introduced me to the sound compressor and showed me what it dose combined with pro tools. Donny has a way of making everything condensed and easy to understand.”

Overall a very good week!

“This week in the studio we had the drummer from Stage Kids come in to record for a track that Pat and the owner of the studio T.J. are currently working on. We also recorded drums for a track that another one of Pat’s students is working on. A very busy and productive week. In the readings we covered automation. It covered everything from the history of automation to the basics of how to automate in daw’s, pro tools specifically.”

October 2015
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