Recording Connection grad Ian Izquierdo Goes from Stuck in a Rut to Hired & Thriving in Music.
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When Ian Izquierdo found Recording Connection he’d gotten to know firsthand, just how ho-hum a life of working 50-hour weeks doing work that didn’t speak to his soul could be. Circumstances out of his control made him reassess where he was going and look into taking his first love—music—more seriously. Little did Ian know just how far staying true to his calling and investing in his growth would take him. Read on!
How’d you get started making music in the first place?
“I had some buddies in high school, and we’d just fool around, making a couple of bars or whatever, like a couple lines. We used to write, like, lyrics and basically short poem… just roasting each other in the poems or whatever. …
Then eventually I was like, ‘I should try to get more involved in music,’ …. So I ended up taking my music tech class in junior year, and it was a lot of fun and I learned a lot. The teacher was really great…. It was like tough love, you know. He would never really be like, ‘Oh, that was amazing.’ It motivated me to be, ‘Oh, I want to get that reaction out of him, that emotion out of him.’ So I ended up taking an independent study [in music tech] in senior year, which was great.”
It sounds like you were going strong in growing your production skills even back in high school. What happened?
“I spent 60, 70, 50 hours a week working [as a driver, transporting people in wheelchairs], and I barely had any time to do anything. I [had] stopped doing music completely. I didn’t do any production, I didn’t write.
So, I would make playlists, and that got me back into music, like finding new artists and seeing… how the genres have been evolving. And it just got me into thinking like, ‘This is like something I want to do.’ It’s always been like the one thing in my life that I felt like I couldn’t leave. [When] I got laid off from my job because of COVID… I said, you know what, I’m going to see if I can find some type of school.” Learn more about how Ian found his way and changed his life in our Straight Talk video below!
Eventually, that led you to Recording Connection. But we weren’t the first program you enrolled in. Tell us about that.
“I did about 10 hours at another school. And I told myself, ‘This is not what I’m looking for because… I didn’t want to go to the school and [to] have to tell them what I wanted to learn. I wanted to have them be like, ‘These are the things that you should know, and these are the things that you should learn and you need to learn if you want to be in this industry.’
So, I found Recording Connection. And from there, you know, now I’m here and working at a studio and doing production gigs and it’s just a blessing.”
Take us back to your first interview with your mentor Steve Catizone. How’d that go down?
“I just remember, like, walking in and having this feeling like, ‘Whoa, like this is the real deal.’… From there I knew the moment I walked in and did the interview with Steve, I knew this is where I need to be and this is where I’m going to learn the most. …
I remember being a little nervous, just kind of, like, antsy… then Steve started asking me what… I wanted to get out of this. And I just told him that I want this to be a career for me…. Instead of using 50 hours a week doing a day job that I have no care for, I wanted to find a way to make this something that I can make a living off of, and also have fun doing it. So yeah, that’s kind of how it went down.”
What was it about you that made Steve take you on as an engineer/producer at Infinite?
“I thought about this for a while, but I think it’s persistence, really…. I kept just going in…. I would just walk in, like, ‘Hey,’ say hi to everybody and just… like stay in on a session and annoy every engineer, like, ‘Hey, when’s your next session? Can I stay in?’… I wanted to take as much as I [could] out of it and absorb everything that I saw, and try to apply it in my own time. I don’t know if that was it but I feel like if anything, that would be it, just me being persistent.”
You also just mentioned applying what you’re learning on your own time. That’s huge too. So, what’s your advice to current Recording Connection students? How can they make the most of their education?
“I’d say if there’s anything you’re stuck on, ask the question and spend time figuring it out. There’s so much that Recording Connection teaches you, that if you let it pass you by, you’re going to regret it because eventually one of those things is going to show up and you’re going to be like, ‘Oh, damn, I did learn about this at one point.’ … Just spend as much time as you can trying to understand everything Recording Connection has taught you. And I think most importantly, like I said before, be consistent and persistent. As long as you do those things, success will come.”
Learn more about Recording Connection, for Audio Engineering & Music Production, Beat Making, EDM, Live Sound, Music Business, DJing, and more!