The role of “Producer” has certainly changed over the last few years. From recording a track for a client who does not play any instruments to organizing sessions, booking a studio and musicians, as well as keeping a project on time and on budget.
Today’s production work can be summarized into 3 categories. I’ll use the following examples of three of my clients to illustrate.
Jennifer is a country music enthusiast who has always wanted to write songs. A former actress and author, this seemed like a natural extension of her creative life. Jennifer had never played an instrument, or written a song for that matter. After giving her some advice on songwriting, in less than two weeks she had lyrics for 12 songs.
I helped her with chords, a melody and an arrangement and then tracked all the instruments and background vocals. We completed 2 versions of each song with her singing one and the other with session singers.
Here’s a sample of her song “Good Ol Girls”.
Kelly is an accomplished award winning songwriter. We have been working together now for over 30 years and I have been involved in one way or another in all her solo work and in the band Vesica Pisces of which I was a member, six CD’s in all.
In all of Kelly’s projects, I have helped her pick the songs, find the right musicians, the acoustic environments, sound layering and arrangement. These are all suggestions; the artist always has the final say. I simply help the artist achieve and hopefully exceed their goals.
Here’s a clip from her latest Christmas CD. Let It Snow
Ammarionette is a young band from Las Vegas that I got to record at Flying Pig Studios in Brea, California during my three years there as musical director. The band mostly recorded live, performing together with minimal overdubs.
This type of project takes a lot of planning. The preproduction was made easy by the fact that the band was very well rehearsed and had most of the parts worked out.
Check out their video for “Screaming is Serious Business”