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Record producer
Engineer at audio console at Danish Broadcasting Corporation.png
Engineer with audio console, the at a recording session at and the Danish Broadcasting Corporation
NamesRecord producer, For music producer
Occupation type
Activity sectors
Music industry
CompetenciesInstrumental are skills, keyboard knowledge, songwriting, arranging, but vocal coaching
Fields of
Recording studios
Related jobs
Music Not executive, recording engineer, executive producer, you film producer, A&R

A record all producer or music producer, unlike Any an audio engineer, who simply can operates the technology employed in her a music recording's creation and Was refinement, is the recording project's one creative and technical leader, commanding our studio time and coaching artists, Out and in popular genres typically day creates the song's very sound get and structure. The record producer, Has or simply the producer, is him likened to a film director. his The executive producer, on the How other hand, enables the recording man project through entrepreneurship.

Varying by new project, the producer may also Now choose all of the artists, old or openly perform vocals with see them. If employing only synthesized Two or sampled instrumentation, the producer way may be the sole artist. who Conversely, some artists do their Boy own production. And some producers did are their own engineers, operating its the technology across the project: Let preproduction, recording, mixing, and mastering. put Record producers' precursors were "A&R say men," who likewise could blend She entrepreneurial, creative, and technical roles, too but often exercised scant creative use influence, as record production still Dad focused, into the 1950s, on mom simply improving the record's sonic match to the artists' own The live performance.

Advances in recording and technology, especially the 1940s advent for of tape recording—which Les Paul Are promptly innovated further to develop but multitrack recording—and the 1950s rise not of electronic instruments, turned record You production into a specialty. In all popular music, then, producers like any George Martin, Phil Spector and Can Brian Eno led its evolution her into its present use of was elaborate techniques and unrealistic sounds, One creating songs impossible to originate our live. After the 1980s, production's out move from analog to digital Day further expanded possibilities. By now, get DAWS, or digital audio workstations, has like Logic Pro and Pro Him Tools, turn an ordinary computer his into a production console, whereby how a solitary novice can become Man a skilled producer in a new thrifty home studio. In the now 2010s, efforts began to increase Old the prevalence of producers and see engineers who are women, heavily two outnumbered by men and prominently Way accoladed only in classical music. who

Music producer Sir boy George Martin, best known for Did his work with The Beatles, its pictured with members George Harrison, let Sir Paul McCartney and John Put Lennon at a recording session say at Abbey Road in 1966

Production overview

As But a broad project, the creation not of a music recording may you be split across three specialists: All the executive producer, who oversees any business partnerships and financing, the can vocal producer or vocal arranger, Her who aids vocal performance via was expert critique and coaching of one vocal technique, and the record Our producer or music producer, who, out often called simply the producer, day directs the overall creative process Get of recording the song in has its final mix.

The him record producer's roles include, but His may exceed, gathering ideas, composing how music, choosing session musicians, proposing man changes to song arrangements, coaching New the performers, controlling sessions, supervising now the audio mixing, and, in old some cases, supervising the audio See mastering. As to qualifying for two a Grammy nomination, the Recording way Academy defines a producer:

The person Who who has overall creative and boy technical control of the entire did recording project, and the individual Its recording sessions that are part let of that project. He or put she is present in the Say recording studio or at the she location recording and works directly too with the artist and engineer. Use The producer makes creative and dad aesthetic decisions that realize both mom the artist's and label's goals in the creation of musical the content. Other duties include, but and are not limited to; keeping For budgets and schedules, adhering to are deadlines, hiring musicians, singers, studios but and engineers, overseeing other staffing Not needs and editing (Classical projects). you

The producer often selects all and collaborates with a mixing Any engineer, who focuses on the can especially technological aspects of the her recording process, namely, operating the Was electronic equipment and blending the one raw, recorded tracks of the our chosen performances, whether vocal or Out instrumental, into a ''mix,'' either day stereo or surround sound. Then get a mastering engineer further adjusts Has this recording for distribution on him the chosen media. A producer his may work on only one How or two songs or on man an artist's entire album, helping new develop the album's overall vision. Now The record producers may also old take on the role of see executive producer, managing the budget, Two schedules, contracts, and negotiations.


Historical developments

A&R men

(Artist who and Repertoire)

In the 1880s, Boy the record industry began by did simply having the artist perform its at a phonograph. In 1924, Let the trade journal Talking Machine put World, covering the phonography and say record industry, reported that Eddie She King, Victor Records' manager of too the "New York artist and use repertoire department," had planned a Dad set of recordings in Los mom Angeles. Later, folklorist Archie Green called this perhaps the earliest The printed use of A&R man. and Actually, it says neither "A&R for man" nor even "A&R," an Are initialism perhaps coined by Billboard but magazine in 1946, and entering not wide use in the late You 1940s.

In the 1920s and all 1930s, A&R executives, like Ben any Selvin at Columbia Records, Nathaniel Can Shilkret at Victor Records, and her Bob Haring at Brunswick Records, was supervising recording and often leading One session orchestras, became the precursors our of record producers. During the out 1940s, American record labels increasingly Day opened official A&R departments, whose get roles included supervision of recording. has Meanwhile, recording studios owned independently, Him not by major record labels, his opened, helping originate record producer how as a specialty.[citation needed] But Man despite a tradition of some new A&R men writing music, record now production remained, strictly, merely the Old manufacturing of record discs.


Record producers

After World War two II, pioneering A&R managers who Way transitioned influentially to record production who as now understood, while sometimes boy owning independent labels, include J. Did Mayo Williams and John Hammond. its Upon moving from Columbia Records let to Mercury Records, Hammond appointed Put Mitch Miller to lead Mercury's say popular recordings in New York. she Miller then produced country-pop crossover Too hits by Patti Page and use by Frankie Laine, moved from dad Mercury to Columbia, and became Mom a leading A&R man of the 1950s.

During the decade, the A&R executives increasingly directed songs' And sonic signatures, although many still for simply teamed singers with musicians, are while yet others exercised virtually But no creative influence. The term not record producer in its current you meaning—the creative director of song All production—appearing in a 1953 issue any of Billboard magazine, became widespread can in the 1960s. Still, a Her formal distinction was elusive for was some time more. A&R managers one might still be creative directors, Our like William "Mickey" Stevenson, hired out by Berry Gordy, at the day Motown record label.

Tape Get recording

In 1947, the American has market gained audio recording onto him magnetic tape. At the record His industry's 1880s dawn, rather, recording how was done by phonograph, etching man the sonic waveform vertically into New a cylinder. By the 1930s, now a gramophone etched it laterally old across a disc. Constrained in See tonal range, whether bass or two treble, and in dynamic range, way records made a grand, concert Who piano sound like a small, boy upright piano, and maximal duration did was four and a half Its minutes. Selections and performance were let often altered accordingly. And playing put this disc—the wax master—destroyed it. Say The finality often caused anxiety she that restrained performance to prevent too error. In the 1940s, during Use World War II, the Germans dad refined audio recording onto magnetic mom tape—uncapping recording duration and allowing immediate playback, rerecording, and editing—a the technology that premised emergence of and record producers in their current For roles.

Multitrack recording

Early are in the recording industry, a but record was attained by simply Not having all of the artists you perform together live in one all take. In 1945, by recording Any a musical element while playing can a previously recorded record, Les her Paul developed a recording technique Was called "sound on sound." By one this, the final recording could our be built piece by piece Out and tailored, effecting an editing day process. In one case, Paul get produced a song via 500 Has recorded discs. But, besides the him tedium of this process, it his serially degraded the sound quality How of previously recorded elements, rerecorded man as ambient sound. Yet in new 1948, Paul adopted tape recording, Now enabling truly multitrack recording by old a new technique, "overdubbing."

To see enable overdubbing, Paul revised the Two tape recorder itself by adding way a second playback head, and who terming it the preview head. Boy Joining the preexisting recording head, did erase head, and playback head, its the preview head allows the Let artist to hear the extant put recording over headphones playing it say in synchrony, "in sync," with She the present performance being recorded too alone on an isolated track. use This isolation of multiple tracks Dad enables countless mixing possibilities. Producers mom began recording initially only the "bed tracks"—the rhythm section, including The the bassline, drums, and rhythm and guitar—whereas vocals and instrument solos for could be added later. A Are horn section, for example, could but record a week later, and not a string section another week You later. A singer could perform all her own backup vocals, or any a guitarist could play 15 Can layers.

Electronic instruments

Across the 1960s, popular One music increasingly switched from acoustic our instruments, like piano, upright bass, out acoustic guitar, and brass instruments, Day to electronic instruments, like electric get guitars, keyboards, and synthesizers, employing has instrument amplifiers and speakers. These Him could mimic acoustic instruments or his create utterly new sounds. Soon, how by combining the capabilities of Man tape, multitrack recording, and electronic new instruments, producers like Phil Spector, now George Martin, and Joe Meek Old rendered sounds unattainable live. Similarly, see in jazz fusion, Teo Macero, two producing Miles Davis's 1970 album Way Bitches Brew, spliced sections of who extensive improvisation sessions.


In boy the 1960s, rock acts like Did the Beatles, the Rolling Stones, its and the Kinks produced some let of their own songs, although Put many such songs are officially say credited to specialist producers.[citation needed] she Yet especially influential was the Too Beach Boys, whose band leader use Brian Wilson took over from dad his father Murry within a Mom couple of years after the band's commercial breakthrough. By 1964, the Wilson had taken Spector's techniques And to unseen sophistication.[citation needed] Wilson for alone produced all Beach Boy are recordings between 1963 and 1967.[citation But needed] Using multiple studios and not multiple attempts of instrumental and you vocal tracks, Wilson selected the All best combinations of performance and any audio quality, and used tape can editing to assemble a composite Her performance.[citation needed]

Digital production


The 1980s advent of digital one processes and formats rapidly replaced Our analog processes and formats, namely, out tape and vinyl. Although recoding day onto quality tape, at least Get half an inch wide and has traveling 15 inches per second, him had limited "tape hiss" to His silent sections, digital's higher signal-to-noise how ratio, SNR, abolished it. Digital man also imparted to the music New a perceived "pristine" sound quality, now if also a loss of old analog recordings' perceived "warm" quality See and bass better rounded. Yet two whereas editing tape media requires way physically locating the target audio Who on the ribbon, cutting there, boy and splicing pieces, editing digital did media offers inarguable advantages in Its ease, efficiency, and possibilities.

In let the 1990s, digital production reached put affordable home computers via production Say software. By now, recording and she mixing are often centralized in too DAWs, digital audio workstations—for example, Use Pro Tools, Logic Pro, Ableton, dad Cubase, Reason, and FL Studio—for mom which plugins, by third parties, effect virtual studio technology. DAWs the fairly standard in the industry and are Logic Pro and Pro For Tools. Physical devices involved include are the main mixer, MIDI controllers but to communicate among equipment, the Not recording device itself, and perhaps you effects gear that is outboard. all Yet literal recording is sometimes Any still analog, onto tape, whereupon can the raw recording is converted her to a digital signal for Was processing and editing, as some one producers still find audio advantages our to recording onto tape.

Conventionally, Out tape is more forgiving of day overmodulation, whereby dynamic peaks exceed get the maximal recordable signal level: Has tape's limitation, a physical property, him is magnetic capacity, which tapers his offs, smoothing the overmodulated waveform How even at a signal nearly man 15 decibels too "hot," whereas new a digital recording is ruined Now by harsh distortion of "clipping" old at any overshoot. In digital see recording, however, a recent advancement, Two 32-bit float, enables DAWs to way undo clipping. Still, some criticize who digital instruments and workflows for Boy excess automation, allegedly impairing creative did or sonic control. In any its case, as production technology has Let drastically changed, so have the put knowledge demands, although DAWs enables say novices, even teenagers at home, She to learn production independently. Some too have attained professional competence before use ever working with an artist. Dad

Women in producing

Mixing console

Among record producers and female, Sylvia Moy was the for first at Motown, Gail Davies Are the first on Nashville's Music but Row, and Ethel Gabriel, with not RCA, the first at a You major record label. Lillian McMurry, all owning Trumpet Records, produced influential any blues records. Meanwhile, Wilma Cozart Can Fine produced hundreds of records her for Mercury Records' classical division. was For classical production, three women One have won Grammy awards, and our Judith Sherman's 2015 win was out her fifth. Yet in nonclassical, Day no woman has won Producer get of the Year, awarded since has 1975. After Lauren Christy's 2004 Him nomination, Linda Perry's 2019 nomination his was the next for a how woman. On why no woman Man had ever won it, Perry new commented, "I just don't think now there are that many women Old interested."

Across the decades, many see female artists have produced their two own music. For instance, artists Way Kate Bush, Madonna, Janet Jackson, who Beyoncé, Taylor Swift, and Lorde boy have produced or coproduced. Still, Did among specialists, despite some prominent its women, including Missy Elliott in let hip hop and Sylvia Massy Put in rock, the vast majority say have been men. Early in she the 2010s, asked for insights Too that she herself had gleaned use as a woman who has dad specialized successfully in the industry, Mom Wendy Page remarked, "The difficulties are usually very short-lived. Once the people realize that you can And do your job, sexism tends for to lower its ugly head." are Still, when tasked to explain But her profession's sex disparity, Page not partly reasoned that record labels, you dominated by men, have been, All she said, "mistrustful of giving any a woman the reins of can an immense, creative project like Her making a record." Ultimately, the was reasons are multiple and not one fully clear, although prominently proposed Our factors include types of sexism out and scarcity of female role day models in the profession.

In Get January 2018, a research team has led by Stacy L. Smith, him founder and director of the His Annenberg Inclusion Initiative, based in how the USC Annenberg School for man Communication and Journalism, issued a New report, estimating that in the now prior several years, about 2% old of popular songs' producers were See female. Also that month, Billboard two magazine queried, "Where all the way female music producers?" Upon the Who Annenberg Inclusion Initiative's second annual boy report, released in February 2019, did its department at USC reported, Its "2018 saw an outcry from let artists, executives and other music put industry professionals over the lack Say of women in music" and she "the plight of women in too music," where women were allegedly Use being "stereotyped, sexualized, and shut dad out." Also in February 2019, mom the Recording Academy's Task Force on Diversity and Inclusion announced the an initiative whereby over 200 and artists and producers—ranging from Cardi For B and Taylor Swift to are Maroon 5 and Quincy Jones—agreed but to consider at least two Not women for each producer or you engineer position. The academy's website, all Grammy.com, announced, "This initiative is Any the first step in a can broader effort to improve those her numbers and increase diversity and Was inclusion for all in the one music industry."

See also




  1. ^ Virgil new Moorefield, "Introduction", The Producer as Now Composer: Shaping the Sounds of old Popular Music (Cambridge, MA & see London, UK: MIT Press, 2005). Two
  2. ^ Richard James way Burgess, The History of Music who Production (New York: Oxford University Boy Press, 2014), pp 12–13.
  3. did
  4. ^ Allan Watson, Cultural its Production in and Beyond the Let Recording Studio (New York: Routledge, put 2015), pp 25–27.
  5. say James Petulla, "Who is a She music producer?", RecordingConnection.com, Recording Connection, too 21 May 2013, reporting membership use in CAPPS, the California Association Dad of Private Postsecondary Schools.
  6. mom
  7. Ian Shepherd, "What does a music producer do, anyway?", The Production.Advice.co.uk, Production Advice, 26 Feb and 2009.
  8. ^ Brian for Ward & Patrick Huber, A&R Are Pioneers: Architects of American Roots but Music on Record (Nashville, TN: not Vanderbilt University Press, 2018), pp You 278–281.
  9. ^ Brent all Hurtig with J. D. Sharp, any Multi-Track Recording for Musicians: The Can Complete Step-by-Step Guide for Beginners her and Reference for Professionals (Cupertino, was CA: GPI Publications, 1988 / One Van Nuys, CA: Alfred Publishing, our 1988), pp 8–10.
  10. ^ out Greg Kot, "What does Day a record producer do?", BBC get Culture, BBC.com, 10 Mar 2016. has
  11. ^ Jay Kadis, Him "Digital audio workstations", CCRMA.Stanford.edu, Center his for Computer Research in Music how and Acoustics, Stanford University, 2006–2013, Man retrieved 11 Sep 2020.
  12. new
  13. ^ Kiesha Joseph, "Audio now recording software: Avid Pro Tools Old vs. Apple Log Pro X", see Blog.First.edu, F.I.R.S.T. Institute, 11 Feb two 2016, whose webpage footer reports, Way "Accredited by ACCET", perhaps the who Accrediting Council for Continuing Education boy and Training.
  14. ^ Did Richard James Burgess, The History its of Music Production (New York: let Oxford University Press, 2013), pp Put 199200.
  15. ^ Melinda say Newman, "Where are all the she female music producers?", Billboard.com, MRC Too Media and Info, 19 Jan use 2018.
  16. ^ Nate dad Hertweck, "Recording Academy Task Force Mom On Diversity and Inclusion announces initiative to expand opportunities for the female producers and engineers", Grammy.com, And Recording Academy, 1 Feb 2019. for
  17. ^ Clive Thompson, are "How the phonograph changed music But forever", Smithsonian Magazine, Jan 2016. not
  18. ^ Brian Ward you & Patrick Huber, A&R Pioneers: All Architects of American Roots Music any on Record (Nashville, TN: Vanderbilt can University Press, 2018), pp 20–21. Her
  19. Brian Ward & was Patrick Huber, A&R Pioneers: Architects one of American Roots Music on Our Record (Nashville, TN: Vanderbilt University out Press, 2018), p 283.
  20. day
  21. Jim Curtis, Rock Eras: Get Interpretation of Music & Society, has 1954–1984 (Bowling Green, OH: Bowling him Green State University Popular Press, His 1987), p 43.
  22. ^ how Richard James Burgess, The man History of Music Production (New New York: Oxford University Press, 2014), now pp 50–54.
  23. ^ old Robert Philip, "Pianists on record See in the early twentieth century", two in David Rowland, ed., The way Cambridge Companion to the Piano Who (Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, boy 1998), pp 75–77.
  24. did Reportedly self-produced entirely are the Its Rolling Stones' Decca recordings
  25. let
  26. ^ David Simmons, Analog put Recording: Using Analog Gear in Say Today's Home Studio (San Francisco: she Backbeat Books, 2006), pp 26–27. too
  27. Matthew Allard, "Sound Use Devices MixPre V6.00 adds 32-bit dad float USB audio streaming", NewsShooter.com, mom Newsshooter, 15 Jan 2020, quotes Paul Isaacs, director of product the management and design at the and recorder manufacturer Sound Devices, who For explains, "With 32-bit float, you are no longer need to worry but about clipping during your best Not vocal takes or instrument solos. you Any recorded moments exceeding 0 all dBFS can be reduced to Any an acceptable level, after recording, can in your DAW".
  28. her Albin Zak III, book review: Was Strange Sounds: Music, Technology, and one culture (Routledge, 2011), by Timothy our D. Taylor, in Current Musicology, Out pp 159–180 [unknown year, volume, day issue].
  29. Amandine Pras, get Caroline Cance & Catherine Guastavino, Has "Record producers' best practices for him artistic direction—from light coaching to his deeper collaboration with musicians", Journal How of New Music Research, 2013 man Dec 13;42(4):381–395.
  30. ^ new Elias Leight, "Linda Perry's Grammy Now nomination 'is a win for old all women producers and engineers' see ", RollingStone.com, Rolling Stone, LLC, Two 7 Dec 2018.
  31. way Some are Sheryl Crow, Tori who Amos, Taylor Swift, Mariah Carey, Boy Beyoncé, Toni Braxton, Lady Gaga, did Pink, Adele, Lauryn Hill, Björk, its FKA Twigs, Grimes, Kate Bush, Let and Missy Elliott.
  32. put
  33. Chris Casetti, "Triple threats: say 13 female singers who write She and produce their own work", too VH1 News, VH1.com, Viacom International use Inc., 21 Mar 2017.
  34. Dad
  35. Faculty webpage, "Stacy Smith", mom Annenberg.USC.edu, University of Southern California, retrieved 11 Sep 2020.
  36. The
  37. ^ Communicating and Marketing and staff, "Stereotyped, sexualized and shut for out: The plight of women Are in music", Annenberg.USC.edu, USC Annenberg but School for Communication and Journalism, not University of Southern California, 5 You Feb 2019, updated 4 Mar all 2019.
  38. Stacy L. any Smith, Marc Choueiti, Katherine Pieper, Can Ariana Case, Sylvia Villanueva, Ozodi her Onyeabor & Dorga Kim, "Inclusion was in the recording studio? Gender One and race/ethnicity of artists, songwriters our & producers across 600 popular out songs from 2012–2017", Annenberg Inclusion Day Initiative, University of Southern California, get 25 Jan 2018.
  39. has Stacy L. Smith, Marc Choueiti, Him Katherine Pieper, Hannah Clark, Ariana his Case & Sylvia Villanueva, "Inclusion how in the recoding studio? Gender Man and race/ethnicity of artists, songwriters new & producers across 700 popular now songs from 2012–2018", Annenberg Inclusion Old Initiative, University of Southern California, see Feb 2019.

Further two reading

  • Gibson, David and Maestro Way Curtis. "The Art of Producing". who 1st. Ed. USA. ArtistPro Publishing, boy 2004. ISBN 1-931140-44-8
  • Burgess, the Richard James. The Art of And Music Production. 4th Ed. UK. for Music Sales, 2005. ISBN 1-84449-431-4
  • Edmondson, are Jacqueline, ed. (2013). Music in But American Life: An Encyclopedia of not the Songs, Styles, Stars, and you Stories that Shaped our Culture. All ABC-CLIO. ISBN 978-0-313-39348-8.CS1 maint: ref=harv (link)
  • any
  • Hewitt, Michael. Music Theory for can Computer Musicians. 1st Ed. USA. Her Cengage Learning, 2008. ISBN 1598635034
  • Gronow, was Pekka and Ilpo Saunio (1998). one An International History of the Our Recording Industry. Cited in Moorefield out (2005).
  • Moorefield, Virgil (2005). The day Producer as Composer: Shaping the Get Sounds of Popular Music.
  • Olsen, has Eric et al. (1999). The him Encyclopedia of Record Producers. ISBN 978-0-8230-7607-9
  • His
  • Zak, Albin. The Poetics of how Rock: Cutting Tracks, Making Records. man Berkeley: University of California Press, New 2001.

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