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Single Most Defining Moment: What inspired you to get into the music biz? Dynamics Processors (HW)
Old 10th December 2002
EveAnna Manley's Avatar

Thread Starter
Single Most Defining Moment: What inspired you to get into the music biz?

My Dad, Al Dauray, had owned Ampeg in the late 60's (and had sold it before he met my mom. He's my step-dad actually.) I grew up hearing tales of my older siblings getting to go to Woodstock and hang out with rock and roll stars. I had always though that was cool. I initially took "Strings" in 4th grade only to be able to get out of Social Studies class. In 5th grade we could do "Band" so of course to be more cool, we all lept over to Band.

I was active in High School Bands and also in the Art programs. In college I still was torn between art and music and didn't quite know where I wanted to go with all this.

Most my college music training coursework was lots of theory and ear training which I dug (analytical like math, puzzles, relationships...) and then lots of old dead classical people studies. Blah. I actually ended up officially minoring in music with no major and took the opportunity to study a plethora of other stuff that interested me, like college physics, economics, bowling (!), geology, African, and middle eastern studies. Stuff I had never learned about before in grade/high school (except physics). I always loved physics. Real world science, man. Stuff you can *use*!

The best music course I took was titled "Roots of Rock and Roll" which was more a study of fabulous african, blues, jazz, gospel etc. music forms exploring where rock 'n' roll came from. How flipping cool was that! Had to fight to stay in that class. Some 300 people showed up for it. Only music majors, juniors or above could stay. Whew. The most inspirational day for me was for finals we all had to find someone famous and either haul 'em into class or interview them and write 'em up. Bill Graham's son was in my class so in walks The Great BG to teach us about the music business.

From that hour onwards I knew it would be the music biz for me and after that semester, I took a semester off and drove out to California with a half plan to go find BGP and get a job as a roadie or something. As it turned out I found the tube amp gig in Chino and here I still am. I was very sad the day BG died as I never got to thank him for so inspiring me. I would like to thank his son, if I ever find him.

That was THE defining hour in my life that inspired me to make a firm decision to be in the music biz, somehow, somewhere. Anybody got any good inspiring stories to share?
Old 10th December 2002
There is only one
alphajerk's Avatar

drugs... cause no one in their sober mind would ever get into the music biz.
Old 10th December 2002
Lives for gear

I never remember conciously thinking about it. It just "was". Not really a choice I made conciously.

A bit like the chicken hawk in the Warner Bro. cartoons. "I'm gonna get me a chicken" from as far back as I can remember, with the "chicken" being a hit record.

So I suppose that makes the defining moment for me, birth.

Brian T
Old 10th December 2002
Lives for gear
loudist's Avatar

Allman Brothers Live at the Filmore East...

Not for the sonics (which is not bad) but for the playing and performances.

I wanted to be part of something that had so much passion and sincere integrity as that album did.

It spoke to me.
Old 11th December 2002
Gear interested
LuvToLaf's Avatar

:) Meeting and visiting Horst Jankowski in his Stuttgart studio in the early 70's. When discussing my LP project, he said; " You vill hear tings you have neve hert before". John Woram, George Martin, Bob Dennis, Carl Fracula. Following the teachings of Fletcher, Jules, EveAnna, and many lessor known, but totally amazing, inspiring people.

Getting to play and record a Rudolf Von Beckerath pipe organ in the late 60's, bad thing though, I was trained audiophile before learning to record anything. There can be a problem adjusting to the realities, limits and nature of modern recording. There is still clashes that happen from time to time.

Influential music: Traffic, Allman Bros., Doors, Savoy Brown, Paul whiteman, Gershwin, The Ventures, Switched on Bach, Beatles, and many others.

Old 11th December 2002
Lives for gear
Knox's Avatar

The Beatles when I was a kid (watching them on Sullivan on Sunday nights) made me want to play guitar. After playing guitar for years, I remember buying the first Hendrix record at 13 or so, smoking a joint and listening over and over and over, thinking . . "no matter what, I HAVE to do this (be in the business)". When I get down, I still put Jimi on to bring my head up.

Also, when I was a little kid, I saw James Brown, Jerry Lee Lewis, Chuck Berry soul rock review live with my father and being impacted by that.

Would say Hendrix was the "light bulb" . . . and the Who live.
Old 11th December 2002
Lives for gear
loudist's Avatar

Oh man... Savoy Brown... Raw Sienna, one of my favorites.

Anyone else know this band/album?
Old 11th December 2002
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toledo3's Avatar

Originally posted by loudist
Allman Brothers Live at the Filmore East...

Not for the sonics (which is not bad) but for the playing and performances.

I wanted to be part of something that had so much passion and sincere integrity as that album did.

It spoke to me.

I did eventually make and album with them, but without Duane and Berry it wasn't even close.
Wow! Live at the Filmore was a BIG reason I got into music. I just recently got a "bootleg" video of some of it.

Also, one day my parents were watching Jimi Hendrix playing Monterey on tv, but scrambled. It just seemed so WEIRD!!! It left an indelible impression. After that my father got me a tape that had Are You Experienced? on one side and Axis: Bold As Love on the other.

Another thing was that my father was involved in the music business and grew up around some "stars," so it was always a part of my life. -GT3
Old 11th December 2002
Lives for gear
XHipHop's Avatar
I've been in bands or whatever since i was really young but what made me want to start learning more about the recording biz was Radiohead's Ok Computer.

And from the differences in our responses, i can see that i'm much younger than most of you
Old 11th December 2002
Lives for gear
Mike Jasper's Avatar
You lyin' little maggots. The question wasn't, "What got you into music?" the question was,"What inspired you to get into the music biz?"

Since nobody else will, I guess I'll tell the truth: Pussy and money. As soon as I picked up an acoustic guitar and got my first bar gig, pussy and money came raining down on me like confetti at Mardi Gras. Right away, too. I lived in a Hollywood Hills apartment, ****ed every woman west of Sepulveda, partied all night, slept all day -- and all I did was play cover songs at an L.A. hockey bar (go Kings).

Yeah. I'm a bit older. A veteran from the front lines of the Sexual Revolution and damn proud of it. Guess those days are gone.

At least AlphaJerk had the guts to give an honest answer: Drugs. But that isn't quite precise, is it AlphaJerk? The truer answer is: Free drugs. Hell, anybody can buy a controlled substance, but musicians get drugs, pussy and money thrown at them all the time.

Back in the day.

Of course, I eventually matured, found a deeper purpose in life, joined a 12-step program or two, and pursued my spiritual growth one day at a time.

But then one night I got ****all drunk and wound up at GearSlutz. I'm back, baby!

Mike Jasper
Giving humans a bad name since 1953
Old 11th December 2002
Gear nut
spacebass's Avatar

my parents got me a guitar and a kiss guitar book when i was 4 years old in 1977.....i have benn ****ed eversince
Old 11th December 2002
There is only one
alphajerk's Avatar

Originally posted by Mike Jasper
At least AlphaJerk had the guts to give an honest answer: Drugs. But that isn't quite precise, is it AlphaJerk? The truer answer is: Free drugs. Hell, anybody can buy a controlled substance, but musicians get drugs, pussy and money thrown at them all the time.
free drugs and free pussy [the kind you **** and chuck that doesnt cost you your wallet on a daily basis... of course im married now, broke, and mostly sober]

guess what i just remembered... for the first time in 5 years, i kinda have a break in recording projects now that this mix has left the building and another album project is kinda on hold. im gonna record me doing some **** for a while, me and my wife and any other poor sap who wants to play on the album.
Old 11th December 2002
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e-cue's Avatar

When my dad smashed my Slayer CD with a hammer.
Old 11th December 2002
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loudist's Avatar

Mike... did you know a gal in Hollywood named Paula around 1988?
She was in the art restoration game.
Old 11th December 2002
Lives for gear
Steve Smith's Avatar

And now the sappy answer ( true, none the less)

I did some local project studio stuff and some live stuff in high school, so I was generally around musos and such, but I really decided to go into this full time because of my best friend's kid Dylan. Dly is severely mentally handicapped ( no one is really sure, but it is mostly like Angelmans Syndrome, with a bit of C. Palsy thrown in) he cannot speak, is generally non responsive to spoken word, and when he was younger ( the time this happened) would have some days where all he would do is sit in the corner and either stare blankly or even hit himself. Well, one day I am over at his house and we are listening to the final mixes of an album My buddy had done that I had assited on and Dylan comes into the room, walks up to the stereo speakers, places his hands on the drivers and proceeds to stand there captivated for the next hour not making a sound, eyes shut, swaying to the music... I was a total wreck, here is a kid who doesn't seem to respond to anything with any patteren who is totally responding to something that we had created, that cut through his disability and conneted with him in a way that blew us all away. And we get paid for this???

As a side note, this " disabled" kid has taught me more about life that most anyone I have ever met..
Old 11th December 2002
Gear addict

What inspired me was; growing up hearing an incredible array of great music.
My mother insists that at age two I said, "Me and Kracy (my sister Tracy) want a pi-nano". I began lessons at six. A few New Years Eve's later I heard 'Bill Haley & The Comets' on TV with my parents and their friends jitter-bugging in the living room. That had an impact! Went to 'Miami Pop Festival' when I was 15, which was held @ 6 months before 'Woodstock'. I saw Hendrix, Canned Heat, Jose Feliciano, Three Dog Night, The Turtles, Rare Earth, Iron Butterfly, etc. When I was 16 I drove to pick up my sister Tracy at her high school home coming dance. The band was still on so I parked and went inside. The band was 'The Allman Brothers', about three months before their first record came out. [BTW I grew up in Ft. Lauderdale & saw them A LOT]. I quickly found out that playing guitar at parties was thee way to meet girls. Went on to see Ten Years After, Humble Pie, Fleetwood Mac w/Peter Green, Savoy Brown, Canned Heat w/Harvey Mandel, Cactus, Grand Funk Railroad, Ted Nugent, The Faces w/ Rod Stewart and on and on. was 'EDGAR WINTERS WHITE TRASH' that did it. I mean really did it. I saw that **** and it was like a fire. So, at age sixteen I started playing guitar and piano in a band. I was also the lead singer. I have been really, really lucky and I'm proud to say that I've never had a day job in my life (my dad thinks that SO cool). Not one day from the day I graduated high school. I have only made money making music. It certainly hasn't always been easy. I'm a very lucky guy.

Old 11th December 2002
Lives for gear
subspace's Avatar
My brother took me to my first concert when I was 13, Black Flag and the Meat puppets. We drove up to the Greystone in Detroit from our suburb of Toledo. Rat sound had their RAT-1 boxes packed in there floor to ceiling, wall to wall drivers. There was no A/C, the volume was pummeling you, the air was thick with condensed sweat and smelled of clove cigarettes. I stood by the bar to stay clear of the punishing PA. One of the crew picked up a syringe from the floor, set it on the counter saying "somebody's having a good time.." Everyone in the place was in leather or fatigues or combat boots, so he takes one look at me in my Toledo team jacket and says "you sure you're supposed to be in here?"
That was the defining moment for me. It was a life of playing in bands and running PAs from there on out. On high school career day I visited a studio and listened to a lecture from the mulleted manager. Leaving, I vowed to never work for a studio. A year later I was subletting his B room to make dirty little alternative records for no money. Then one day I get a call that the band we're opening for next month is pulling out because they've got the number one song in the country. WTF? From there on, I was a part of the "business" like it or not. People were willing to pay me for what I used to do for free, simply because now it was comercially viable. And so it went...
Old 11th December 2002
Lives for gear
Curve Dominant's Avatar

This was a tough one to figure BrianT, there wasn't one defining moment for me.

My old man was a jazz trumpeter in big we were going to sleep at night in our second-floor bedroom (my older brother Bobby and me), my dad would stand down in the basement lulling us to sleep with blue passages on his trumpet.

He played the Spanish guitar too, and would play and sing for us on stormy nights to chill us out. He sounded a lot like Johnny Cash, which I think was intentional. My pop always loved Johnny Cash, still does.

Bobby eventually got a hold of that guitar and immediately started pumping some serious rock and roll out of it. The coolest guys and prettiest chicks in my school district would all come over to the house to watch Bobby play that Spanish guitar, then they'd all leave to go drinking/smoking drugs/having sex. Little brother Eric tagging along for all that was out of the question, but the Spanish guitar got left behind too, so I got a hold of it...

A few years later I'm 18 and playing in clubs and bars in Philly, wielding a Strat and a fuzzbox and a wah pedal...the wild ride begins...

I don't know if I chose this, or if it chose me. Or if it's like I got dropped in an ocean and just drifted with the current.

Example #1: A local drinking buddy who aspired to be the next Ballanchine says to me over drinks one night, "Write some music for me." So I do, and a few years later he's got a nationally touring dance company, and I'm an award-winning "composer." Composer? That's what I am now? OK, I'll buy that. Whatever...

Example #2: A girl I'm dating has a role in a TV pilot...long story short: the director askes me to score the soundtrack. Sure, why not, not a problem.

Building a production studio seemed like the next move...didn't know the first thing about recording and engineering, but how hard can it be? Next thing ya know I've got a Pro Tools studio. I didn't know what the hell Pro Tools was until I saw it on my own computer screen, but I heard through the "grapevine" that it was becoming a "standard," and doing what's "standard" is a key to success in any industry. "So let's take a look at this Pro Tools thingey" I says to myself. It didn't seem too difficult to grasp at first glance. A digital/virtual mixer, laid out just like an analog studio. What's the problem here? I don't see the problem. Yeah, I heard all the bitching and moaning about Pro Tools, for years, before I even knew what the hell it was or what it did. But I'm using it now, and I don't see what the ****ing problem is. I was a guitarist on sessions at Sigma Sound recorded through a $.25million Neve console, among other analog shenanigens over the years, and my Pro Tools mixes beat the piss, **** and **** out of ALL of those sessions. So I don't see what the ****ing problem is with PT, but I wasn't an engineer on those analog gigs. If I was, things might have been different, who knows?

I seem to digress, EveAnna, but my point is: Initial inspiration is easy, but continual inspiration is what keeps us in the game.

Example #3: PT is becoming this "standard," yet folks who've been "in the biz" for decades longer than I have don't seem to be down with it. But I'm down with it, so that's an opportunity. It's not the last opportunity or the only opportunity, but it's inspiring to find a void you can fill, knowing you can nail it without a doubt. Knowing you can pick up this instrument and rock out on it badder and meaner than anyone else in the hood, just like my older brother Bobby with my Dad's guitar back in the day.

Technology evolves, and new instruments evolve, and new inspirations for creativity constantly crop up as life goes on. So we grab these new instruments and use them to communicate these new insights. Every work of art is a child of it's era, a reflection of it's environment. The music of Bill Graham's time was beautiful, spirited...and wholly un-reproducable in today's environment. That's what makes it special. But there was a lot of garbage produced in those days too. All the same is true today. And will be tomorrow, and the next day...

Some things inspired lots of peeps to get into the music biz. The few and the proud found some things to keep them inspired, or those things found them. That's what I find fascinating.

Aren't we all here by accident?
Old 11th December 2002
Gear maniac

My step father won 2nd prize in a national contest in 1977 singing and playing acoustic guitar.

In 1984, I distinctly remember being in a dancehall, leaning against a wall of 18" loaded cabinets...and a tune by SuperCat was playing called "Cry Fe De Youth". The sound of the bass drum and Bass together got me, there and then, in that instant.

One year later I paid $30 to ride on a truck to my first "working" gig. The lights etc blew me away.

Funny, I've been mixing FOH for SuperCat now for 10 or so years, and I recently met the guy that mixed most of his tunes in the 80's - he used to mix monitors for Ziggy Marley...both of us at fatter, and slower, and wax nostalgic on days past....

NYC Drew
Old 11th December 2002
member no 666
Fletcher's Avatar
In like 1970, my cousin took me to see the Allman Bros. at the Fillmore Eas (no, it wasn't the shows that were turned into the record, but it might as well have been)... Johnny Winter opened... and all in all... I walked out of that theater with a new plan.

Soon after that I started playing guitar , wanting to be Duane Allman when I grew up... but without the being dead part if I could avoid it. Met up with a few other kids, started a band did some local stuff, nothing really of consequence. BTW, if any one reading this is into the "folk" scene... the other guitar player in that series of high school bands was Richard Shindell... he's gone on to become kinda big time in the folk world.

The fact of the matter at that time was if you had any hopes of girls noticing you... you had better play football, or music. At the time I was 5' 8" and maybe 130lbs... I thought guitar was a far more pragmatic choice... and overall, it was a pretty good choice... though every now and again some Jock boyfriend would smack the **** out me for screwing his girlfriend.....

As we went on our little teenaged pop combo aquired a "PA"... which other bands would rent from us for their gigs... somebody had to go along an help hump the gear, and that was usually me. I remember one gig where I walked out with $20- and the band walked out with $17.50 each. I started to think that the crew thing might be a pretty good racket.

So we had a punk band in lower Manhattan when every label with a pulse was signing everything that moved down there... The band was called "Crazed Youth"... and frankly, I'm pretty sure we sucked. One thing led to another and the engineer and producer assigned to us by the label didn't feel like doing the gig... so I ended up engineering most of that record [after all, I had put together a PA...

From there a couple of other life crisises... split NY, moved up to Boston... went to school for video production... worked in video a total of one day [OK it was closer to a half a day], and went straight back to working in rock and roll where I knew what the rules were.

Fast forward a decade or so... and the gear pimping trade came into the picture... which has been another set of ridiculous adventures over the last nearly decade and a half... and you have some of the moments that led to where I be now... guest moderator on a web board dedicated to an industry where damn few in the outside "straight" world know or care what we do....
Old 11th December 2002
At the ripe old age of 21 I was working in snow biz.

I had been in bands toured a little, made an album and a single and was drifting 'without music' for a while. My rock star wannabe urges seemed to be sailing away down river quite peacefully and I reflected from time to time on how odd it was that I wasn't bothered about goals that I felt so passionately about in my teens.

My buisiness took me to a recording complex (Matrix) where a good chum (Tom O'Leary) worked as junior engineer / Tape Op. Leaning against the door of one of the control control rooms I witnessed the moment that was pivotal for me.

Tom was engineering a session on which he was invited to suggest things musically as well as technically. On an overdub session I saw him 'sing' (la la la) a counterpoint melody line he had thought of to a keyboard player on a synth. Tom coached the player till he got it, recorded the line on tape and played it back.

I though.... now THAT looks INTERESTING!

It sort of tied up nicely with my interest in counterpoint on records.

An AR HIFI amplifier I had as a teenager (a beta model!!! my best chums dad was a designer) had this 'null' function where I could hear JUST the echo plate or one overdub gtr off my favorite - the Stones Exile On Main St had me semi intrigued about how records were made in LAYERS (overdubs), not just the one performance.

Counterpoint addition potential - had me hooked.

I pestered the studio owner and the manager for months till I got a Tea Boy (gopher/runner/intern) job there aged 22. My goal - production. Engineering was merely a stepping stone for where I wanted to be... Sitting in the producers chair.

I had also made a timely decision, that there was no buisness in snow business and show business was the only business for me!

Old 11th December 2002
Gear Head

"Turn It On Again" by Genesis.

Perfect balance of tastefully applied ear candy and raw energy...pop genius.

Ten years old, thinking to self, 'That's what I'm going to do with my life!'
Old 11th December 2002
Lives for gear
rmx16's Avatar

Seeing the Nazz at the old Electric Factory in 1970.I was 16 at the time

Robheh heh heh
Old 11th December 2002
BevvyB's Avatar

I can never pronounce Sepulveda. Perhaps that's why I never get laid in LA.
Old 11th December 2002
Lives for gear
Mike Jasper's Avatar
Mike... did you know a gal in Hollywood named Paula around 1988?
She was in the art restoration game.
Naw, I got to LA in 1973 and was gone by 1978. Like I said, I'm older.

Interesting you brought it up, though, because I did hang around a guy named Steve Scull, whose dad was Robert Scull, a pop art collector. Until I wound up in an art history class ten years later, I thought the guy was totally bull****ting me.

Note to Eric: Few people here will know who Ballanchine is (few people anywhere do). But you were probably counting on that, you ballerina.

Note to Fletcher: You must be older, too. "Crazed Youth" sounds very familiar to me, and no, I'm not confusing it with "Sonic Youth." Did the band have a Warhol connection of some kind? I'm just thinking out loud here.

... and went straight back to working in rock and roll where I knew what the rules were.
Yeah. Yeah, I totally get that. (PAUSE) What were those rules again?

Great thread. Some revealing stories here.

Old 11th December 2002
Lives for gear
Kris's Avatar
My best buddy convinced me to take up the guitar over the summer so I could join the High School Jazz Band... (He had just switched from trumpet to Bass guitar)

After a few weeks of playing jazz standards with major chords, I started progressively learning the real chords, and really quickly had a knack for improv... the Jazz instructor gave me solos in practically every song... I was hooked (the defining moment I guess)...

He even let us do a few original tunes at performances...

We played killer songs by groups like Blood Sweat and Tears,,, and even Stairway to Heaven!
Old 11th December 2002
Gear interested

I played trumpet in high school and was also a ham radio operator.

After returning home after my first year of college in 1967 (yes, I'm old), a friend of mine who played bass in a band told me that his band won a battle of the bands and the prize was a recording session in a real studio in Seattle and asked me if I wanted to go along. It was a 3-track 1/2" with an Altec Lansing Voice of the Theater speaker for monitoring each channel. That's when I decided what I wanted to do. In 1970, I heard about a new studio in Seattle. I dropped in, told them of my electronics and music background, and they said I could hang out if I wanted. The equipment included a 16-track Scully with a Langevin board and a Fairchild limiter. After awhile they hired me (I also had to be a roadie for one of the co-owner's bands). Then the recession hit Seattle and I was laid off. Got a gig in Portland (8-Track 3M with an Electrodyne board). In 1972, got an acoustic duo an album deal with Elektra. They wouldn't let us record it in Portland, so got to go to LA for most of the summer. Worked primarily in Elektra's Studio A (API Board), Studio B (same studio where The Doors and Bread worked - does anybody remember what kind of mixing console they had?) and Producer's Workshop (same building as The Mastering Lab). Mixed at Armin Steiner's mixing studio. In 1977, moved to LA for six months to work in someone's home studio (Helios board with 40-track Stephens recorder).

That's enough for now.

BTW, my high school bass player buddy is still making his living as a musician.
Old 11th December 2002
Gear Head
Lars FM's Avatar

Steve Jones (and the rest of that band).
Old 11th December 2002
7rojo7's Avatar

for music it was weekends with my grandparents who both had been pro musicians but gave it up to get rich or maybe it was jerry lee lewis on some bob hope special in the 60's, anyway all correlated stories are surely vvery heart-tugging. what was responsible for me becoming an engineer was the engineer who worked on my first recording and maybe the three engineers that followed, as a result I've become a very polite, responsive and capable engineer that's sensitive to its clients needs.

ever notice that the guys who talk about getting it are the ones who rarely do? maybe they don't remember that they're answering a topic started by a lady.
Old 11th December 2002
Lives for gear
Knox's Avatar

Originally posted by 7rojo7
for music it was weekends with my grandparents who both had been pro musicians but gave it up to get rich or maybe it was jerry lee lewis on some bob hope.
When I was a kid . . I was a HUGE Jerry Lee Lewis fan. My father was a gangster and "somehow" got me backstage to meet him (*smile*). I had every JLL record you could buy. I dumped all my records on the hood of his limo and Jerry Lee was so amazed that I had all these records that he signed everyone of them. Most of them I still have . . including his very first Sun Records release.
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