Songwriter and producer Christian Medice was initiated into the music industry as a drummer with various bands when he attended Boston’s Berklee College of Music. After graduation, both career questions and ferocious student debt loomed large. As a result, a year later he moved to New York City where he began to connect with various bands via Myspace (remember those days?). He offered to produce one song for free and then, provided that everyone was satisfied, charge $100 for each song thereafter. It helped him to build both his production prowess and his industry network.
Billy Mann of Medice’s management team was acquainted with P!nk and a few years ago introduced the two. He moved to Los Angeles last year and records largely in his North Hollywood studio. In addition to P!nk, he’s worked with Halsey, lovelytheband and many others.
One of his production signatures is to use unconventional sounds when and where appropriate. “I come from a band background and grew up listening to a lot of pop music,” Medice says. “So I merged the two [to arrive at something] a little left of center. Building unique sounds has always interested me. A straight, up-the-middle pop song can get boring. I need something to take it out of that zone and make it a little bit unique.”
Medice works primarily in his North Hollywood studio. But like many producers today, he has the flexibility to record virtually anywhere. “If P!nk wants to work out of a certain studio in Santa Monica, I can just use my laptop,” he explains. “It’s pretty much identical to my studio setup. I prefer to work out of my own space because it’s more comfortable but the ability to track anywhere—it’s so easy.”
To draw the best out of a band or an artist, Medice finds that it’s best for them to become acquainted first. Fortunately, he’s the kind of person to which that comes easily. “I’ve been doing this for 10 years and have built up a lot of chops for how to deal with people,” he observes. “There’s a wide variety of personalities out there [and] I’ve learned how to make people comfortable––I’m pretty adaptable. If someone’s new to songwriting, I’m down to hold their hand throughout the whole process.”
Another of his production assets is to recognize when things aren’t going well in the studio and to shift direction when necessary. “It happens all the time,” Medice says. “I have a Little Tikes basketball hoop in my studio. It’s probably one of the best purchases I’ve ever made. Things like that can lighten up the mood. Often when we come back [to the studio], the answer is right in front of us. It’s a good way to get out of our heads for a minute.”
When Music Connection spoke with Medice, he’d recently begun production of lovelytheband’s second album. He aims to accompany the guys on tour this spring to write and record on the road. He’s also involved with The Aces, an all-female alternative band from Provo, UT signed to Red Bull Records. His dream is to one day produce for The Killers.