Audio-Technica, the Recording, Radio and Film Connection (RRFC) and Clyne Media, Inc., recently hosted the second annual Csaba Petocz Master Class Scholarship at Mix L.A. studios in Los Angeles. The scholarship, which has become an annual audio education event created to honor the legacy of the beloved producer/engineer, was held in September, and six lucky scholarship winners were selected by the Recording Connection to attend this advanced audio workshop conducted by five-time GRAMMY® Award-winning mix engineer Chris Lord-Alge (Green Day, Keith Urban, Rise Against, Pink, Carrie Underwood).
A three-time GRAMMY nominee with 37 number-one record credits and 32 platinum or multi-platinum albums, Csaba was one of the greats, living and recording in Los Angeles and Nashville while working closely with the top names in the industry, from Metallica to Larry Carlton, John Michael Montgomery to Alanis Morissette, Aretha Franklin to Elvis Costello, Morrissey, Al Stewart and more.
The workshop, which was open to advanced audio engineering and music production students, had Lord-Alge focusing on the essentials of being an engineer/producer, with special emphasis on mixing, production and gear, along with a focus on the “business” side of the job – a subject that is often overlooked as part of an audio education program.
The day began with Chris Lord-Alge, who was a longtime friend of Petocz, addressing the students about Csaba, his work ethic and what it takes to make it in the industry. “I have always viewed my work as not just a job but a full-time gig – it’s a life, and that’s how my friend Csaba viewed it as well. You can’t just put your toe in the water – you have to dive in with both feet and swim your butt off,” stated Chris Lord-Alge. “That type of attitude, that kind of vibe and commitment comes through the second you walk through that studio door and that’s the kind of engineer/producer clients are looking for.”
The sessions then began with Lord-Alge taking the students into the control room of his Mix L.A. studio and giving an overview of the session, followed by discussing his view on recording, the various audio formats, the importance of choosing the right piece of gear for the job and melding analog with digital. Throughout the day, Lord-Alge interacted with the students, always explaining in detail the various aspects of what he was teaching. Of particular interest was when Lord-Alge began discussing the business aspect of the recording process and being confident when dealing with clients and record labels. Many of the students commented on how this information was invaluable, as they had not been exposed to this subject previously and how important it was for their client relationships.
“I would say the most important thing you need to have is organization and confidence,” stated Lord-Alge. “Even if you keep your work organized and know how to engineer and how to do this or that – that’s just mechanics. But if you can do all that, but can't keep your face forward, your attention up and be confident, it's a complete failure. Because the confident one is the one that stands out and wins.”
Michael Edwards, Audio-Technica Vice President, stated, “We are so glad that we are able to continue to honor Csaba. Working with some of his closest friends like Joe Chiccarelli last year, and Chris Lord-Alge this year exposes a new generation of audio professionals to his experience and work ethic, while acknowledging and paying homage to Csaba’s accomplishments throughout his career. CLA and his staff couldn’t have been any more accommodating, and the event was so successful that we are planning to do it again in 2019 with the goal of honoring Csaba’s achievements and passing on his philosophies and work ethics to the next generation of audio professionals.”
Brian Kraft, Chief Academic Officer/COO of Recording Radio Film Connection & Casa Schools, stated, “This year’s event with Chris Lord-Alge gave the students a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to learn from one of the greats of our industry while honoring the legacy of Csaba. Everyone here at the Recording Connection is looking forward to participating in next year’s event and keeping this scholarship going for years to come.”
For more information, please visit audio-technica.com.