Close Up: Skip Saylor

Skip Saylor

Mixing Outside the Box: Credited on eight of Billboard’s Top 300 selling records of all time, veteran producer, mixer and engineer Skip Saylor launched his career working on classic projects with the likes of Tom Petty and Blood, Sweat & Tears (under Jimmy Iovine and Roy Halee) and later engineered for everything from famed R&B artists The Whispers to TV and radio commercials. His first studio on Larchmont hosted many classic sessions, including Grammy winning k.d. lang’s Ingenue, Guns N’ Roses’ Use Your Illusion I & II, Ice Cube’s The Predator, Santana’s Supernatural, Boyz II Men’s II and Foo Fighters’ The Colour and the Shape

Since 2006, Saylor has worked his magic in a studio he built out of a two-story barn with natural acoustics on his ranch property near the Van Nuys, CA airport. Developing a pitch perfect old school meets new school approach, he loves when young indie artists come in and are blown away by the sound achieved by his analog gear, often saying they can’t go back to “in the box.” Working frequently with his young, contemporary “wrecking crew” of fellow producer-mixers Courtney Travis and Alan Pohl, and still using his 100 input SSL from the ‘90s, Saylor likes to say he “promotes the marriage of analog and digital.” He also sets himself apart from some of today’s mixers by “never mixing completely in the box” and using real equipment along with plug-ins

Multi-Genre Clientele: In recent years, Saylor and his team have mixed tracks for Billy Ray Cyrus, DDG, French Montana, Flo Rida featuring Intl Nephew and Oya Baby, actor-singer Cody Christian, Glasses Malone, Kendrick Lamar, Dave East, Fridayy, Mack 10 and singer-actress Dizzy Harris. Whether marquee names or upstart independent artists or bands, they sometimes begin the recording process at home, then come to Saylor’s place (which he sometimes dubs “The Compound”) for finishing and mixing, taking the tracks to the next level. “One of the best compliments I ever got,” Saylor says, “was from an artist who said I completely changed the mix in less than three minutes, making it jump out of the speakers at him. That’s what I’m always aiming for.”   

Quote from Skip: “My studio was built around the idea of being an engineer-producer with my own space, but I have a lot of friends who book the studio to do their projects. My job is mostly helping artists and producers realize their vision. Everyone has a dream of what their record will sound like before they start it. The challenge is, can we meet that vision or maybe exceed it? I like to say that the job of a producer, co-producer or mixer is to guard the castle (meaning the artist), and are we helping make that artist all that he, she or they can be. Is the castle we’ve created Buckingham Palace or are we turning the artist into a rental house in Winnetka? We would like to think that we are better than most at what we do.”

Contact Skip Saylor, 818-300-0400