Los Angeles DJ Heather Crawford (aka DJ Zienna) hones her skills at Recording Connection
At a fairly young age, Los Angeles-based DJ Heather Crawford (aka “DJ Zienna”) had already begun making a name for herself in the club scene. A self-starter, she’d managed to hone her skills and promote herself to the point of landing a Hollywood residency, and even a high-profile gig at the Las Vegas Hard Rock Cafe. But when she decided she wanted to move beyond spinning other people’s records and start producing her own, she became very aware of her limitations. That’s when she found the Recording Connection.
“I was doing some research online,” Heather says, “it was the most accredited school alternative and there were a lot of very good reviews.”
She decided to enroll, and was placed with producer/engineer Doug Boulware at The Abstract Recording Studios in Los Angeles. Even with her previous experience as a DJ, Heather quickly saw how much she had to learn. “From the beginning point. I thought it was too much for me to understand,” says Heather. “And then once I actually started going through the program, I understood…It’s just sitting down and getting the knowledge behind what you’re doing.”
Heather credits her mentor with helping her over the learning curve. “My mentor has been absolutely amazing,” she says. “The way that the class studio is set up is more than I could have asked for. I thought it would be more of a class situation, but being in the studio and being able to physically hands-on work on things and see how things are run…Once I see, I can physically do it.”
Since beginning her apprenticeship (externship), Heather has found a new joy in her work. “I love going in the studio,” she says. “My favorite moment is actually sitting down, putting my mixes that I’ve completed on the speakers and going through them, and watching [Doug] say, ‘Okay, this sounds good, but this is how we’re going to manipulate the sound.’ and be able to look at his talent and then take my talent and make them into something creative and beautiful. It’s very exciting…“One of the main reasons I got into the producing and engineering [is] because I have a passion and a love for music. I want to personally work on my own music, and now I have the capability of being able to do that.”
Meanwhile, Heather continues to work on her DJ career, and is even scheduled next month to do an overseas gig in Shanghai! “I’m so excited,” she says. “That’s what I’ve been wanting to do my whole life is to be able to travel overseas, so with what I’m doing it’s obviously…I’m able to do it now and get paid to do it, so it’s beautiful.”