Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by ben4572, Oct 11, 2007.

  1. ben4572

    ben4572 Guest

    Hello Everyone,
    I'm new to the forums so first let me say hello :). I am a sophmore in high school and have been looking for things to do for my life since 8th grade. And so far music producer/engineer sounds like the best career for me. I have been playing and listening to music since I was very young, I picked up violin in kindergarten, then learned trumpet in 4th grade, and then drums/ percussion in 5th grade to now. But, since the beginning I have always been interested in how the recording process was done and the mixing of different tracks. Recently, I had the opportunity to record drums with my drum teacher for the first time and I loved it. However, I would like to learn more and I discovered the Full Sail school. There's a one year course for recording and supposedly it has great reviews from many people in the music business.

    -Has anyone here attended the Full Sail school and what are the courses like?
    -I hear that the music industry is very shaky and you can either make it really big as an engineer/producer or you can be very broke and be making minimum wage. If I attended a school like Full Sail would they help with career placement and put me in a job that would keep me financially sound with an average income?

    Thanks for your time :D.
  2. Link555

    Link555 Well-Known Member

    Mar 31, 2007
    North Vancouver
    Honestly, it is extremely hard to make a great deal of money as an audio slave. There are a lot of very talent engineers and not enough gigs to pay the bills. My suggestion is to get your degree/tech first, and get a source of reliable income.

    If you like music and audio, you will eventually have to learn electronics, acoustics, economics, accounting, and marketing. Why not get a degree in one of those areas first. This will allow you to get a day job, and make enough money to support your audio addiction. As well you will be learning skills you can use in your future audio career. Then if you still think an audio school is a good idea, by all means go for it.

    The other way is to get the audio courses done and the diploma. Head out into the TV, or post areas and work essentially for free for 2-5 years. Then get a break and start making enough money to live, but not enough to have a family, let alone retire well. Sure you may win the lottery and become the next Bob Rock and actual get paid what you are worth. But personally I would try to keep a few more options available.
    Just my 2 cents,

    Best of luck!
  3. Dani

    Dani Guest

    some really good advices I think,I am on my way( a long way) to becoming producer/engineer too,and I am also trying to get a degree in IT engineering at the moment cause that will give me the money I will need to follow my plan A which is becoming producer/engineer
  4. Thomas W. Bethel

    Thomas W. Bethel Distinguished Member

    Dec 12, 2001
    Oberlin, OH
    Home Page:
    Full Sail is an excellent school that is VERY EXPENSIVE.

    I personally know three graduates of Full Sail.

    One works for GC

    One works for Verizon selling cell phones

    One works for a major music retailer.

    The guy who works for Verizon graduated first in his class and is an excellent audio engineer but soon realized that he could make more money selling cell phones than he could being an audio engineer.

    The guy who works for GC talks a good game but I am not sure how "in depth" his audio knowledge is.

    The one who works for a "major music retailer" worked for me for a while as an intern and he is very very good but after trying to find work in the real world decided that he needed to work to make some money for food and lodging and so he got into retail audio sales. He still wants to be an audio engineer but the sad fact is their are many more people seeking work than there are places that want to hire them. He is still doing engineering for friends after hours to keep his chops up and he still sends out resumes but so far no takers.

    One FS graduate who applied for an internship here was "horrified" to learn that we did not have an SSL console or all the latest and greatest play toys he had used at Full Sail. Since we are a mastering operation we have no real need for a console and I don't have the budget that Full Sail has to buy all the new toys. I think he is going to be VERY disappointed in that many studios that might want to hire him are also not going to have all the flashy toys he "needs" or wants.

    All the advice you have received so far is very good,

    Get a degree from a good 4 year college in something that you want to do and do audio as a second career or hobby.
  5. RecorderMan

    RecorderMan Distinguished Member

    Mar 28, 2001
    MY advice is that unless you are crazy or already rich don't try to become a producer/engineer. It's about as likely to happen as winning the lottery.
  6. tzer

    tzer Active Member

    Oct 23, 2007
    You can still become a producer/engineer...

    You can still become a producer/engineer... but it does not have to be your vocation (career). Rather it can be your avocation (something you do outside of your career).

    I have been involved with music since age 6 - and I am almost 40 now. I have been in the studio, on stage at clubs and other event venues, recorded and produced my own material as well as friends' stuff - all in all, it's been a very rewarding music/engineering/producing experience - and yet I've made virtually no money at it.

    I have a lot of music-related projects. A studio project band, a free-form jam band, my own personal songwriting/producing project, etc... I believe the reason I continue to LOVE music is because it is NOT my career. If it were my career, the voluntary nature of how I do it today would be traded for a mandatory thing where I have to do it whether I want to or not. Nothing sucks the pleasure out of a once-loved hobby than being forced to do it all the time in spite of your mood or desire.

    So - sorry for the long rant - but you can do what many of us here do and begin setting up your own project studio, start taking some classes or doing self-study and begin developing your engineering and producing skills. If you start now, ask the right people the right questions and spend your money wisely, you can be recording, producing and engineering before you know it!

    Good luck!
  7. DaveBenjamin

    DaveBenjamin Guest

    The Los Angeles Recording School has an EXCELLENT program and they've just revamped the career development courses/staff. The school itself has a tremendous relationship with major studios as well. Plus, you're right in the dead center of Hollywood! (That could go either way, haha)
  8. metaldog

    metaldog Guest


    I don't know anything about the Full Sail school you mentioned, but my advice is don't listen to naysayers...

    If you really feel that is what you want to do, you believe in yourself and you are prepared to deal with whatever comes your way to achieve it then stick with it.

    Any advice telling you to stick to a "safe" job is dangerous advice. It's like saying "Choose something that bores you, that you will never have any interest in and will probably make you a bitter, cynical & unhappy person when you you are older". The only reason people do not succeed, myself included is not because of the odds being stacked against you. People overcome short odds all the time. It's called success.

    Some people beat cancer when they've been told they have 12 months to live.

    Working towards being a producer is nothing compared to that, especially if you are passionate about it.

    I wish you the best of luck and never give up on your dreams.
  9. TheBear

    TheBear Guest

    ya. i went to mcnally smith college of contemporary music. and it was cool and all and i loved the time i got to be in the studio, but sadly i didnt have a whole lot of time, or to me wasnt enough time so i left. and from my experience and how i like to be hands on. i think itd be better to just try and get internships and at studios, or just read up every single bit of information online and build up ur own diy studio and get to know the in's and out's of equipment and get the ear for everything. cuz a big part of it all is training ur ears. but a big thing is to never give up and if you really want it...ur gunna get it, but you gotta bust ur ass and prove urself that you deserve to be in those dream studios with massive amounts of priceless eq's, pre's, compressors, acousticly perfect rooms, huge consoles, etc.

    good luck to you and everyone who's chosen this path...we all need it haha.


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