Music Scene in
Recording Connection is
Audio Education Upgraded for the 21st Century
Chicago is fertile ground for the development of some of the world’s best musicians and it has been so for nearly one hundred years. Some of today’s biggest dominators in hip hop and rap including Kanye West, Common, Chance the Rapper and Lupe Fiasco are all from Chicago, a hotbed of musical production and innovation. Other notable, modern era Chicago artists and bands include The Smashing Pumpkins, Jennifer Hudson, R. Kelly, LeCrae, Kaskade, Grapetooth, Tasha, Post Animal, Lala Lala, OHMME, Girl K, Meat Wave and Dehd and 70s band Chicago.
Currently, Chicago is home to numerous annual music festivals which speak volumes about the city’s musical heritage and contributions. These include Lollapalooza, the Pitchfork Music Festival, Riot Fest, the Chicago House Music Festival, the Chicago Blues Festival, Mamby on the Beach, the Chicago Jazz Festival and the World Music Festival, to name just a few.
Since the early 1900s, Chicago has been a mecca for music, starting with the Great Migration which brought jazz and blues to the city. During the Roaring 20s, “The Stroll” (located on State Street between 26th and 39th) was a musical hotspot featuring America’s best black entertainment. Louis Armstrong, Bessie Smith, Blind Lemon Jefferson, Joe “King” Oliver, Cab Calloway, Earl “Fatha” Hines, Jelly Roll Morton all performed there, sharing music destined to change the world.
The proliferation of Gospel music as a genre hearkens back to the 1930s and Thomas A. Dorsey, jazz pianist of Chicago’s Pilgrim Baptist Church. His fusion of jazz, blues and the R&B rhythms heard on “The Stroll” and the traditional “call and response” of African American worship music was the birthplace of the Chicago Gospel sound. Dorsey was the person to discover Mahalia Jackson. Her vocals on his song, “Precious Lord, Take My Hand” cemented his legacy as the “Father of Gospel Music.”
After World War II, Chicago became a melting pot for blues, jazz, gospel, folk and country music. Jazz performers of this era include Jelly Roll Morton, Louis Armstrong, Benny Goodman, Gene Krupa and Nat King Cole. Blues legends of this period include Howlin’ Wolf, Buddy Guy, Muddy Waters, Willie Dixon and Bo Diddley.
Out of this rich musical stew, rock ‘n’ roll was shaped. The genre gained cultural dominance in the 1960s with young artists “adopting” or “appropriating” songs written by black Chicago musicians. This includes: The Doors (“Back Door Man” by Willie Dixon), Led Zeppelin (“Bring it on Home” by Willie Dixon), The Rolling Stones (“Little Red Rooster” by Willie Dixon), the Yardbirds (“I’m a Man” by Bo Diddley), George Thorogood (“Who Do You Love?” by Bo Diddley), Cream (“Spoonful” by Howlin’ Wolf) and Foghat (“I Just Want to Make Love to You” by Muddy Waters) which covered the songs, bringing the genre which may be defined as a largely blues-based hybrid with an accentuated backbeat with roots in predominantly historical African American music genres (Gospel, R&B, jazz, blues).
1977 would mark the entry of yet another genre destined to change the world—House music. Created in Chicago by DJ Frankie Knuckles with the opening his club, The Warehouse on the Southside of town, House music is still a prolific genre which now, besides the mainstay of Classic House or Chigago house music, includes a panoply of subgenres including: Acid House (said to debut at Knuckles’ club), Deep House, Progressive House, Tech House, Electro House, Tropical House, just to name a few.
The Recording Connection has teamed up with several of Chicago’s recording studios to provide externships in Audio Engineering and Music Production, Hip Hop and Beat Making, Live Djing, Ableton and Logic programs.
Miller Street Studios, located in Chicago’s Pilsen neighborhood (home of the Thalia Hall concert venue), has recorded Whitney Houston, Lupe Fiasco, R. Kelly, LeCrae and many more. They have been a Chicago Recording Connection mentor location for well over a decade.
Rax Trax, located in the Lakeview neighborhood near Wrigley Field, is another long-time Chicago Recording Connection mentor location. Among the notables who have recorded in their studio are the Smashing Pumpkins, Chance the Rapper, Buddy Guy and Ice Cube.
No matter what genre of music you are looking to create or get involved with, The Recording Connection can provide a hands-on, one-on-one education inside one of Chicago’s premiere recording studios. Not only will you be able to learn the fundamentals of music creation and recording, but you will be doing so inside one of Chicago’s top recording studios where you will have the opportunity to connect with influencers in the Chicago music scene.
Your CHICAGO, IL RECORDING SCHOOL ALTERNATIVE
While there are several recording and audio programs in Chicago from which to choose, only one Chicago recording school alternative expertly matches you with a highly experienced audio engineer or music producer inside of a recording studio. This person is your mentor throughout the duration of your program. Many of our mentors have worked with artists like Beyoncé, P. Diddy, 50 Cent, Lady Gaga, Justin Bieber, U2, 50 Cent, Lenny Kravitz, Taylor Swift, Skrillex, and many, many more. Many even have Gold or Platinum records and Grammys too. But when it comes to working in music, such accolades are nice but the long and short of it is, even the biggest names in music want to work with true blue lovers of music and sound, not thrill seeking wannabes. If that sounds like you, read on.
Your mentor will train you in a direct, personal, one-on-one manner. Whether you choose to get your audio and music production education remotely, via online video conferencing or opt for our in-studio externship approach, direct one-on-one lessons are the foundation you will build upon. Our industry-oriented, up to the minute curriculum, is written by working professionals so that you can learn the right way, right from the start. Every student receives our signature 360° experience in which our team of knowledgeable Academic Facilitators serve as second mentors. Operating out of our headquarters in Los Angeles, they’re available to answer questions about the lessons, help student enrich their understanding of concepts, tutor them on their digital audio workstation, and more. They can even help you work on your songs, beats, overall production quality and can even help you devise a realistic game plan for going far in your career.
With Recording Connection you can learn audio engineering, mixing, music production, live audio, electronic music-and its many sub-genres (dub step, drum and bass, techno, jungle and more), club DJ and post production audio. We believe the smart way to break into the recording industry in Chicago, IL is by externing inside a Chicago recording studio–and that’s where Recording Connection comes in.
You could spend 20-50 thousand dollars to go to a recording program at a college or traditional trade school. For what often amounts to just a fraction of the tuition you would pay elsewhere, you can get in at a real recording studio and learn in a one-to-one manner, training with a working music professional. Get started on the inside track, learn directly from the pros, and get your education in a real-world environment via the Recording Radio Film Connection and CASA School’s (RRFC) blended education model. Our student externs complete coursework online in their assigned eBooks comprised of industry-oriented courses of instruction. In-tandem with online coursework students extern inside of a mentor location i.e. a professional recording studio. Our way of doing things is cost-efficient and geared to enabling committed, dedicated individuals to build exciting, fulfilling careers in music production and audio engineering.
Chicago, Illinois is the third largest city in America, with an urban population of nearly 3 million and a surrounding metro area poplulation of 9.5 million. Besides being known for its commerce and manufacturing, Chicago’s contribution to America’s musical history runs very deep, being a hotspot for blues, jazz and Dixieland music in the early 20th century, then a hub for folk music in the 1960s, then the birthplace of House Music in the 80s, and continuing today as a major player in the rock and hip-hop scenes. The list of noteworthy bands and artists with Chicago roots is long, and includes such names as Sam Cooke, Bo Diddley, Nat King Cole, Benny Goodman, Herbie Hancock, Ted Nugent, Kanye West, Liz Phair, Styx, Smashing Pumpkins, and of course the namesake band Chicago–just to name a few.
With such a broad and diverse music scene, Chicago is also home to quite a few live music venues and quality recording studios, offering plenty of learning opportunities for aspiring recording engineers, music producers, live audio engineers and the like.