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Job Opportunities & Student Success Stories Job Opportunities & Student Success Stories Issue #60 Author Credits: Liya Swift & Jeff McQ

  #60 – Job Opportunities

Jimi Petulla & Brian Kraft can help you land a job in Recording, Radio/Broadcast, Film, or Culinary!

Here are just a few of the latest jobs & opportunities for RRFC students & graduates this week:   


  Click here to see full details on the jobs currently available. Visit the official RRFC Job Board for more opportunities, and check the RRFC Blog for news & updates!   Contact Student Services for more information on logging in.  


Jimi and Brian get you learning on-the-job, but your success is built on your own drive and creativity. Read below about a Recording Connection graduate who found a niche in hip-hop
and now has almost more work than he can handle!

Student Successes
  Recording Connection graduate Chris Locke: Finding his niche in hip-hop     Recording Connection graduate Chris LockeThere are two things that up-and-coming producers and engineers could learn from Recording Connection grad Chris Locke of Austin, TX. First: Success isn’t handed to you—you have to go and get it, any way you can. And second: If you find a niche, you’ll never lack for work.   These are important points to make, because someone meeting Chris for the first time without any context might get the impression that he has just gotten lucky. A prominent player in the Austin hip-hop scene, Chris has earned a reputation for his unique spin on hip-hop vocal production that has resulted in a nearly never-ending stream of clients. “I work with pretty much 85% of the hip-hop community in Austin now,” he says. “There are three engineers at the studio where I work…I work like 60 to 70 hours a week. Pretty much every day is like a ten-hour day for me, and I strictly work with hip-hop and rap and R&B. I stay completely booked with that and I don’t have to ever worry about trying to find business anymore, because it just comes to me.”   This is where the first point becomes so important: Chris didn’t just stumble upon a niche market in the Austin scene, or his niche sound within that market. It came through years of working, learning, paying his dues and even working for free.   An aspiring producer and rapper from a young age, Chris found his way into the Austin music scene through a combination of hard work, making connections and thinking creatively. He says most of his connections came, not by engineering itself, but by a back-door method.   “I got involved with photography and video after I started engineering, and I started going to shows,” says Chris. “And every single show, I would stay there the whole time and take everybody’s picture. And when they would come and talk to me, I would pretty much tell them, ‘Hey, this is what I actually do,’ and I would show them my studio and get them more involved with that. So the camera became like a business card to me.”   As for the hard work…Chris worked at Pizza Hut as a delivery driver, earning enough money to pay for his education. He then enrolled in Recording Connection after the courses at Austin Community College had failed to hold his attention.   5th Street StudiosChris apprenticed at 5th Street Studios in Austin, where he was paired with mentor Nick Joswick. Chris says it was a steep learning curve at first: “It was really hard. I mean, I didn’t know anything about the place, you know? [Nick] was trying to teach me about compression and I couldn’t even hear it.” But the opportunity to learn hands-on sparked Chris’s work ethic, and he eventually caught on. “I learned so much more working with Nick then I did at ACC (Austin City College),” he says. “The mentor helped me a lot because I was able to ask personal questions, but you still have to put all your own effort into it too.”   As his apprenticeship moved forward, Chris decided to jump in with both feet, saving enough money from his Pizza Hut earnings to quit his job and work at the studio for free. The studio responded in kind, throwing him into the thick of it. “The owner of the studio was like, ‘Start working here. Start handling all these people.’ And he gave me some rappers. And man, like the first two months of working at the studio, I had to work with three big names. I didn’t know what the hell I was doing yet.”   Who were the three big names? Rapper Lil’ Keke; Stunnaman (from California hip-hop group The Pack); and a then-unknown duo called Icona Pop, who rose to international fame not long after.   “That was when I first started,” he says. “Now I work with Riff Raff and Gunplay, and a whole bunch of rap names in the last year have started coming to me. That’s a lot better for my image, because as soon I get a picture with one of those guys, everybody in town hits me up and I stay booked for a month!”   Now he’s earning his living in the industry he loves and he’s doing it all out of 5th Street Studios, the very same place where he apprenticed! But now’s the time to expand, after more than three years of recording artists, Chris has plans of opening a studio of his own in the near future. “I would like to be an artist myself at some point,” he adds. “Right now, I feel like this is just a stepping stone.” But for now, he’s enjoying the fruits of his Recording Connection training and the strong work ethic that have brought him into the niche market he’s found in Austin.   We’re sure Chris Locke will use all those connections he’s built over the past few years to get that solo career right on track!   


Watch us on Larry King here:
Issue #60


Right – Win a Record Deal with iTrack Pocket

  Click here to select a different RRFC program.

Select which RRFC Institute you would like to learn more about:

Now, select the state you want to attend in.  

  #60 – Apprentices in Action
Here’s what some RRFC Apprentices
have been up to!
SxSWLindsey KappaRecording Connection student Lindsey Kappa (Austin, TX) was busy working SXSW as part of the stage management team for the Frenchie Smith Records concert line up when she got a call for an interview that was setup through us. Lindsey says, “Long story short… you are now looking at one of the assistant engineers at the Cedar Park Center…Not only will I learn about live sound, but I will also be trained on how to use the camera equipment, lighting system, and so much more!” Congrats Lindsey Kappa! Keep on rockin’!    Andrew ZaryckiRadio Connection apprentice Andrew Zarycki was recently at NBC Sports Radio Studios in Dallas, TX where he got to sit-in on an interview with actor Vince Vaughn. Andrew says, “It was a thrill to hear one of my favorite actors on the phone on the same radio station I was at. I can’t wait to do these kinds of interviews, crossing my favorite pop culture icons with the sports world. I bet the listeners got a big thrill out of it as well.”    Anne MarieFilm Connection apprentice Anne Marie Cummings has finished her notes on the novel-to-film adaptation of a hush-hush project and is at the table, talking development with the hired writer and the project’s producer, mentor Judi Levine. She’s also been invited to write a treatment for another book, a 400 page novel that is being considered for adaptation!    Ryan Johnson on SetOn his first day, Film Connection student Ryan Johnson (Indianapolis, IN) got to PA on a shoot. He was also asked to be an extra and, later in the day, if he could handle a speaking role. After working through some initial butterflies, he was fine with a little impromptu acting and says, “If this is anything like the rest of my schooling, I can’t wait to continue.”   



There’s a record deal up for grabs!   Yes, you read that right. Focusrite have teamed up with Caroline Records of Universal Music Group to offer one talented YouTube performer the recording contract of a lifetime.   iTrackEntry is simple.   All you need to do is:   1. Record a video of yourself singing and performing an original song with an instrument.
2. Upload it to your YouTube channel
3. Submit a link via our competition page before June 10th     Entry is free, stakes are high and clocks are ticking – so what are you waiting for?   To enter visit: www.focusrite.com/win-a-record-deal  

iTrack Pocket offers the easiest and fastest way to enter this once-in-a-lifetime contest!   Record and share HD video performances with your iPhone using iTrack Pocket’s high quality stereo mic and instrument input. Instantly upload to your YouTube channel with Focusrite’s FREE Impact iPhone app.   *Purchase of iTrack Pocket is not necessary to enter.


  #60 – Mentor News
Daniel Sollinger checks in from SXSW!
Daniel SollingerEvery year in March, hundreds of bands and music artists (not to mention hundreds of thousands of music fans) converge on Austin, TX to attend South-By-Southwest (SXSW), recognized as one of the biggest indie music festivals on the planet. But Austin isn’t just about live music: it’s also home to a burgeoning film scene, and as an extension of this fact, SXSW also holds its own film festival, drawing filmmakers from all parts of the world. In fact, Film Connection mentor Daniel Sollinger of Los Angeles, CA screened no less than two of his films at SXSW this year! He checked in with us a few days ago, and we thought we’d share some of the conversation with you.  
* * * * *
  RRFC: How is South by Southwest?   Daniel Sollinger: It’s great. I mean, it gets bigger every year. It’s just off the hook.   RRFC: Which movie of yours is playing down there?   Daniel: Well, I have two: one that’s called Ktown Cowboys, which is a feature. Then I have a short that’s called Knock Knock, that’s playing here as well.   RRFC: Can you tell us a little bit about each?   KTown CowboysDaniel: Well, Knock Knock was like a little horror film that we did. It’s like 11 minutes… They have like a midnight shorts program, and Knock Knock is part of that. Ktown Cowboys is an indie film. It’s sort of like Entourage set in Korea Town, basically…We shot it over 20 days back in last November.   RRFC: You had a Film Connection apprentice working on that with you, didn’t you?   Daniel: I did. A Film Connection apprentice named Faruk Begovic helped with Ktown Cowboys.   RRFC: Have you gotten a chance to meet any people down there at SXSW that you’re a fan of?   Daniel: Yeah. It’s funny because with all these festivals—Sundance is the same way—what’s great about it is [there are] a lot of people that I know who [are] out of Los Angeles that we don’t really connect with necessarily in Los Angeles, but you run into them at these festivals…I came out of a thing the other day. Right down the sidewalk was this agent that I know and we do things with. It would take me six months to organize a face-to face meeting with him, whereas we just stood there on the sidewalk in Austin and talked for a while. It’s really great for that kind of stuff.   RRFC: Are you scouting for any potential future musicians to work in any of your films while you are down there?   Daniel: Well, it’s interesting that you ask that, because a friend of mine who I ran into here is a composer, I’ve used him on a few movies, and he introduced me to a person who’s a music supervisor. I am actually I’m in pre-production for a movie that I need a supervisor like right away to help me with a particular issue…Basically I’m going to end up hiring him after meeting him here at SXSW. It definitely happens.   RRFC: Any other projects in the works you want us to know about?   Daniel: I have a movie called LA Slasher that going to be coming out in movie theaters on May 1. I hope people will go and see LA Slasher. Film Connection students helped me with that one, for sure…Kurtis Huntsinger was on LA Slasher…[also] a guy named Kyle Durack.   RRFC: Enjoy your time down there!   Daniel: Yeah, it’s awesome.  


  #57 – Film Digital Information Kit – Success Stories

Most Film Connection graduates find work in their field.

The Film Connection has been successful in finding thousands of jobs for our graduates. Some are working as producers, some as writers, others as directors, costumers, production designers, editors, screenwriters, and more.
Click here to learn more about the Film Connection!

CASA The Culinary Apprenticeship School of the Arts can get you learning one-on-one
from an award-winning chef in a real restaurant!

Bill Bracken“Traditional culinary education to me is the apprenticeship mentorship approach. This is the way our culinary industry started out. I believe the mentorship approach to culinary education is a sound one. The profit loss statement of every culinary operation looks to productivity and efficiency as its number one priority. Having to re-teach culinary graduates is not only inefficient but also costly and time-consuming”     Bill Bracken, Owner of “Bracken’s Kitchen” Food and Beverage Consulting, Los Angeles, CA  


Dr. Drew endorses the Recording, Radio & Film Connection, and CASA The Culinary Apprenticeship School of the Arts.
Issue #60


  #60 – Catching Up

Catching Up
with Brian Kraft and Jimi Petulla

Brian Kraft Visits with Ross Hogarth
You never know who’s going to show up for lunch with Brian!   Ross Hogarth and Brian KraftThis week, sitting down with Brian for some Italian pasta and cool beverages was award-winning producer, mixer and engineer extraordinaire Ross Hogarth. Yes, THAT Ross Hogarth: the main man behind the board for such varied acts as Van Halen, Sick Puppies, John Mellencamp, The Doobie Brothers, Keb’ Mo’, R.E.M., and literally hundreds of others!   The conversation revolved around Ross’s early experiences in the studio with the late legendary producer Greg Ladanyi and mega-talents Jackson Browne and David Lindley, as well as how important relationships are in building a career and body of work. Ross also talked about some of his first experiences in the music business on the road, doing whatever needed to be done and jumping in wherever he was needed – a role that he feels totally prepared him for the big time in the studio. Ross also talked about his recent live stint recording Flogging Molly at the Hollywood Palladium with no soundcheck!   At this point in the conversation, the legendary producer-engineer Al Schmitt, who had been dining on the patio, pulled up a chair and joined the conversation with his old friend Ross and new friend Brian. The talk revolved around family, friends, some of their favorite artists, engineers and producers, and how it’s important to remember that this is a “people” business and to look out for each other.   Ross recalled that when he received a GRAMMY nomination this past year for his engineering on Keb’ Mo’s album, he got a call from fellow producer and engineer Joe Chiccarelli congratulating him, something that really touched his heart. Ross also shared his passion for passing along his knowledge and experiences to the up-and-coming. As a matter of fact, Ross noted having taken one young, budding engineer, Matt “Linny” Linesch, under his wing, who has since gone on to become a sought-after engineer/mixer in his own right, and who is now a mentor for the Recording Connection!   In coming months, Ross will join Recording Connection’s Master Class Series, and who knows who else he’ll turn into the industry’s next coveted engineer!  


  #60 – Apprentice Media
Check out this work by RRFC apprentices!


Quotes from Students:

  Information Kit – See How Apprentices Learn from Top Music Professionals

See How Apprentices Learn from Top Music Professionals

Dave Pensado, Recording Connection mentor Matt Linesch, and Recording Connection apprentice, Hannah Finegold discuss the Recording Connection’s mentor/apprentice music education approach at the world famous United Recording in Hollywood, CA. United Recording is one of the many famous recording students where Recording Connection students serve their apprenticeships.   Click here to learn more about the Recording Connection!


RRFC partners with real industry professionals to educate students while they apprentice in real recording studios, radio stations and film production companies all over the world.

For more information, Click here!