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Featured Artist: Luciana Zogbi

Thursday, December 18th, 2014

Luciana 1Luciana is a very talented artist.  From the get go, she had a clear vision for all the songs that she produced with StudioPros.  She acted very much as one of the producers on the project, which is the great part of working with StudioPros, you can be as involved as you would like or give complete control to us producers on the team here.

For “Stardust”, you can clearly hear the European artist influences of Adele and Coldplay with the soaring strings and electric guitar riffs, but she still keeps it unique to her style.  She knew where she wanted to take this song from the start.  We used our Basic Production Package, along with a String Quartet, and Tara singing background vocals.

Check out “Stardust”

How did you first get involved with StudioPros.com?

I stumbled into the music industry quite by accident. It all started out last year when I uploaded a cover song to YouTube for my sister’s birthday. I thought only my friends and family would watch my singing video, but for my surprise, it went viral. This video has now over 19 million views on YouTube and before long, I started uploading more and more singing videos.

Recently I decided to move away from covers and record my original songs. But I’m an undergraduate business and economics student studying/working full time and it would be impossible for me to spend hours and hours on studio sessions. That’s where StudioPros came in and they exceeded all my expectations. Within a few weeks they were able to craft my demo song into a commercially viable record. I couldn’t believe it!

How was the StudioPros process for you? Was it difficult to work online?

In my case, working online wasn’t a choice; it was a necessity. If it weren’t for StudioPros online services, I probably wouldn’t have recorded my songs. The website’s platform is very easy to work with and the musicians are all remarkably professional and talented.  Robb completely understood my style and concept and was very competent in communicating my vision to the musicians.Luciana 2

How did we help to get your songs sounding professional?

The production of a demo song into a “radio ready “record takes ability, talent and experience. The team at StudioPros has all of those qualities and more. The musicians delivered creative, original tracks and Robb was able to turn my idea into a tangible product.

How many songs have you produced with StudioPros?

Two songs, and I hope to get more songs produced soon.

What are you doing with your music? What’s next for you?

Despite my parents thinking this is madness and wanting me to work in a bank, all is good and I feel optimistic. I already have a large fan base that will buy my records so I will continue to perform, produce and release my music.

Who are some of your favorite songwriters and musical influences?

My taste in music is very eclectic. I grew up listening to classic rock like U2, Pink Floyd, AC/DC, Scorpions etc… When I started my musical education, I migrated towards Jazz, Alternative and even Classical. For this song specifically, my inspirations were Adele and Coldplay.

When did you begin songwriting? What instruments do you write with?

I began songwriting as a hobby when I was 12. I play the guitar and the piano, but I prefer composing on the guitar.

Luciana 3

“Stardust” packs a lot of emotion; what was the inspiration and writing process like for that song?

I was so inspired to write this song that I finished it in 48 hours. This inspiration came from something quite philosophical my grandfather jokingly said to me: “When all of your problems seem too big, remember we are only stardust lost in space and we mean nothing (laughter)”. This sentence stuck in my head and I kept asking myself: Are we here for a reason? Or are we simply a collection of random chemicals made in the cataclysmic explosion of stars: Stardust (or nuclear waste if you are less romantic).

This song invites the listeners to revisit the most primitive question of all: “What are we?” We humans declare ourselves to be alive even though we don’t know what that means. We build rockets and smartphones, but we are incapable of explaining our most primitive urges and desires. I could go on and on…

Besides music, what else do you enjoy?

Food.

Do you draw inspiration from our everyday life?

Of course! I love writing about everyday events and feelings that people identify with. I think music is a fantastic tool that allows us to find deeper meaning in everyday concepts.

What do you do for a living?

I am currently an undergraduate business and economics student.

What is your plan for your final recordings?

I will record a music video to go along with this song and then release it on YouTube, Itunes, Spotify…etc

 

Get Your Songs Produced by StudioPros

If you are interested in getting your songs produced professionally, don’t hesitate to contact producers Kati O’Toole or Robb Hutzal.

Read more about StudioPros Music Production here: http://studiopros.com/music-production.php

If you’d like to discuss getting a project started, call: 1-310-928-7776. We look forward to working with you soon!

Featured Artist: Sandy Frazier

Wednesday, July 30th, 2014

Sandy Frazier is a talented New York City based singer-songwriter. I have had the pleasure of helping Sandy produce 3 songs to date and we are in the works of putting together a full album of material so she can release a 10 song project. Not only is Sandy a talented songwriter, she also is a professional artist/painter, author with published works, as well as being a very well known publicist specializing in talk radio. She is one busy creative woman.

For the featured song, “A Very Private Person”, Sandy and I talked about her concerns of taking this traditional blues song with her scratch demo of guitar and vocals and having it be dated in production. She didn’t want just a basic blues production that would be reminiscent of the 70′s or days gone by. Together, we chose some recent reference artists including “The Black Keys” and some of Sandy’s favorites, “The Sounds” to help our music production team understand the vision we were going for. By adding the perfect combination of live drums, electric bass, some more edgy organ tracks, keyboard riffs, acoustic rhythm guitars, distorted electric guitars, a solo section to really let the guitarist shine and the perfect combination of soulful backing vocal support by LaTisha – her track came to life.

I could hear the excitement and revival in Sandy’s voice after speaking about each step of the production process and hearing the instrumentation unfold. We’ve also helped add her own personal touch by also including her friend James Hirsen on the harmonica and saxophone in the recording.

Check out Sandy’s track, “A Very Private Person” produced by StudioPros

How did you first get involved with StudioPros.com?

I was searching online for a good studio in which to record my original songs.

How was the StudioPros process for you? Was it difficult to work online?

A total pleasure! No stress, no pressure… just pure enjoyment. StudioPros and their producers are so professional. You can’t go wrong!

How did we help to get your songs sounding professional?

By listening to my ideas and respecting my original vision.

How many songs have you produced with StudioPros?

3, so far… many more to come!

What are you doing with your music? What’s next for you?

I’m working on my second album. I’m very excited about all the new technology and ways musicians can get their music heard via the Internet.

Who are some of your favorite songwriters and musical influences?

Elvis Presley, John Lennon, Kate Bush, The Sounds

When did you begin songwriting? What instruments do you write with?

I’ve been writing music all my life – since I was a little girl. I usually write with an acoustic guitar, but sometimes piano.

A Very Private Person packs a lot of emotion; what was the inspiration and writing process like for that song?

I was trying to express how people can be disingenuous and insincere; how relationships always seem to come with baggage and some kind of an agenda that usually is not in my best interest.

Besides music, what else do you enjoy?

I’m a professional artist/painter and have exhibited in Soho, Chelsea, Charleston, SC and more… I’ve got over 200 pieces displayed online. I am also a writer and have published several books. I sell “The Mystic Artist” on my Web site and Amazon.

Do you draw inspiration from your everyday life?

I am inspired by all the mystic artists throughout time – painters, musicians, writers, poets… the creative mind is an endless source of material and inspiration for my art and music.

I am very grateful to have been blessed with the opportunity to re-record some of my best songs and to be proud of the professional results I’m getting. I’m honored to be able to have access to some very talented session players! It’s an incredible experience. I just want to do them justice with my voice and make them proud to have worked on my songs.

What do you do for a living?

I am a very well known publicist specializing in talk radio.

What is your plan for your final recordings?

I am working on a record that I hope to be able to sell on iTunes, Amazon, etc. But ultimately, I’d like to find young talented musicians and singers who will perform and record my music in the future.

To find out more about Sandy’s music and art: http://sandyfrazier.com

To check out James Hirsen: http://www.jameshirsen.com

Get your songs produced by StudioPros

If you are interested in getting your songs produced professionally, don’t hesitate to contact producers Kati O’Toole or Robb Hutzal.

Read more about StudioPros Music Production here: http://studiopros.com/music-production.php

If you’d like to discuss getting a project started, call: 1-310-928-7776. We look forward to working with you soon!

 

 

 

 

Featured Artist: Patricia Charlton

Thursday, July 24th, 2014

Tricia1

Producer’s Note: I usually present the Featured Artist blogs in interview format, but our most recent artist Patricia Charlton has such a gift of writing and storytelling that she has written first hand about working with our production team. With that said, read what the talented songstress has to say about her experience with StudioPros.

The StudioPros experience from Patricia Charlton:

I first got involved with StudioPros when I was online looking for studios in my area to record my songs.

I have written music for years. I wrote my first instrumental when I was around 10. The lyrical aspect of writing came as a teen, when of course we are angry and misunderstood. Standard songwriting scenario.

I am not involved with a band so I had no one familiar with my songs. I was a little intimidated at the thought of hiring studio musicians, taking time for them to learn the music and praying that personalities, creative juices and work ethic didn’t eat up studio time. This was all new to me. I had no contacts and no experience in production.

I found StudioPros online, made the call, mulled it over for about a day and signed on. It was a relief to know that I could do so much in one place.

Check out “Wash Me in Your Grace” produced by StudioPros:

My StudioPros producer really guided me through the process. My producer was patient, helped me in realizing what I really wanted; the flow, the sound, the instrumentation. She also had a lot of great ideas, so were bouncing things back and forth. It was a bit of a learning experience due to my lack of production experience, but it was awesome and exciting.

Once I got the process and my artistic desires down, working online with my producer and the studio musicians went smoothly. I have completed and released seven songs thus far with StudioPros, and I am presently working on three more.

 

Finding the right team of musicians to record your songs.

I’ve been very impressed with the musicians that have worked on my projects and with how professional the completed works are. This is the first time that I’ve I really heard my music come to life!

As I have said, I have written for a very long time. Starting out with the piano as a child, but most of my music has been written on guitar. I now, as an adult, have the desire to go back to the piano and see what kind of creative juices flow. My tastes, music and lyric ability have matured.  I hope that it opens up a new door to my music.

What are your songwriting inspirations?

I love all types of music;  Jazz to hard rock, classical to country, and everything in between. I’ve really been into the folk genre for most of my life and recently country. Both are reflected in the music I write. The most influential artists and songwriters have been Sheryl Crow, Sarah McLachlan, Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, Civil Wars( Joy Williams & John Paul White) and Pistol Annies (Miranda Lambert, Ashley Monroe & Angaleena Presley). Story tellers…

Life in general is what inspires me.  Heartache, passion, sheer humor and God’s blessings in life. I write country/folk music or you could consider them Americana maybe.  I also write contemporary Christian music. Whether it is from my standpoint on life or putting myself in other’s shoes; If I find something I’m passionate about, the writing just kind of spills out. I’m blessed.

Just getting my songs out there is my ultimate goal. I love to sing but truly would love to have someone cover them. My favorite thing is to sit down and write a story with my music. The songwriting, that’s my favorite. I enjoy performing but I’d rather play in church, a backyard cookout or drinking wine on my back porch!! My other enjoyments in life are my family, friends, art, outdoors in of itself. I like to camp, fish and play on the lake.  I also really like good food and wine!

To check out more about Patricia, visit her website: http://www.patriciacharlton.com/

Get your songs produced by StudioPros

If you are interested in getting your songs produced professionally, don’t hesitate to contact producers Kati O’Toole or Robb Hutzal.

Read more about StudioPros Music Production here: http://studiopros.com/music-production.php

If you’d like to discuss getting a project started, call: 1-310-928-7776. We look forward to working with you soon!

 

 

Featured Artist: Kaylee Keller

Thursday, June 26th, 2014

 

kayleekeller2I always enjoy the process of working with young singer-songwriters because I always can see how much they learn throughout the production from start to finish and the promise in their futures is so bright. This month’s featured artist, Kaylee Keller is one of the most mature teenage girls I have ever met.

Born and raised in Western Kansas (Garden City), Kaylee is just 16 years old and an upcoming junior in high school.  She has already gotten 10 college credits and is currently studying at the New York Conservatory for Dramatic Arts in New York during her summer school break. Planning to be graduated from high school by Christmas, Keller is going on to start her college studies full time in January. I jokingly reminded her this morning to enjoy being a kid while she still can:)

We chose to produce 3 songs together to showcase her versatility as she develops as an artist. We produced 2 original songs by Kaylee. “Stand Up” and “Puzzle Piece”  shed light on her pop/country sensibilities with a full band instrumentation of live drums, bass, guitars, keys and additional drum programming. We also picked out a cover song to present Kaylee’s softer side. We chose the popular song “Hallelujah” and approached it with a more stripped back instrumentation of acoustic and electric guitars, cello, upright bass and piano in an acoustic ballad style. For all 3 songs we utilized our talented session vocalist Shelby to add supportive backing vocals to build up the chorus’s and add vocal interest in the productions.

Check out samples of Kaylee’s songs produced by StudioPros:

Hallelujah (cover)

Puzzle Piece (original)

Stand Up (original)

I could hear the promise and excitement in Kaylee’s voice throughout each step of the production when she would call me after receiving a new instrument preview. I know that this is just the start of the journey for Kaylee and can’t wait to hear more as she continues to grow and develop as a songwriter, artist and individual. I also couldn’t complete this article without mentioning Kaylee’s wonderful and supportive mother Pam who was also encouraging and supporting Kaylee every step of the way.

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Songwriter’s Challenge: Write a Piano Pop Ballad

Wednesday, May 21st, 2014

Ariane_Mateesco

As the Memorial Day weekend draws near, I wanted to send out a songwriter’s challenge for the long weekend. I challenge you to write a pop ballad.  Take that extra day you’re given this weekend and give yourself an hour or two to sit down and write a new song! A lot of pop artists are taking a step back on their productions and releasing material that is more stripped down minimal instrumentation of piano, some light orchestration with either synth strings or live strings and the perfect vocal production. Why not use it as a challenge to put out some similar demos in this style for publishing opportunities and pitching material?

Often times, tracks get overproduced and the most important element in the recording gets lost- the vocals and the story of the song. Sometimes, a piano/vocal production is the way to go. If you have a full band production of a song already complete, don’t forget to do a simple acoustic stripped back alternate mix of that song so you have options.

The StudioPros production team has recently finished the production of “For Amber” by French songwriter living in Switzerland, Ariane Mateesco. Ariane had originally wrote the song as a gift for her 15 year old sister Amber, taking a poem Amber had written in French and putting lyrics and music to the poetry. After speaking with her about the process and helping her develop the song, we did a piano based production with Kelsey on vocals and added a nice melodic cello playing supportive lead counter melodies. We also developed the song as a full band production adding drums and bass as an alternative version. Having both the full band production and the simpler piano/vocal version has expanded the options for sending the material out to A&R representatives and publishing companies.

 Check out StudioPros production of Mateesco’s song, “For Amber”:

Full Band Production:

Piano/Vocal/Cello Production:

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