Where to look for assistant and engineering jobs

Discussion in 'Microphones (live or studio)' started by BrockRock, Sep 14, 2004.

  1. BrockRock

    BrockRock Guest

    I've only been living in L.A. for about 4 months, but I have been interning at a really cool studio in Santa Monica. I have sat in on many sessions learned analog recording and improved upon my knowledge of Digital recording. I have learned quite a bit but feel it is time to move on to a paid position where I will get more session work. Where is the best place to look? How to I find people who are looking for people like me? I know lots of programs and techniques and understand that it is tough to make it as an engineer in L.A. Any help anyone can give me would be wonderful. Thanks.

  2. shezan

    shezan Guest

    hey brock how are you...boi u r in LA i wish i was there.... well here is a web site which has alot of opportunities in the media.... either film radio tv music anywhere...
    hope u find wht u r looking for...
  3. OlympicPhil

    OlympicPhil Guest

    Your best bet is probably to send your CV (I believe you call them resumees over there) to every pro studio you can find an address/email address for.

    If you get no luck, do it again 2 or 3 months later.

    That's how I got my job with EMI.

  4. tofumusic

    tofumusic Guest

    Yea send it via email, fax and snail mail and then follow up a couple of days later. A buddy of mine has done this routine twice and it never fails him, both times he landed a position by the middle of the second week.
  5. EricK

    EricK Guest

    In addition to sending resume. Call them to call the studios regularly. Every 2 weeks or so. You might try jsut dropping by and talking to the manager as well. When I was coming up in Nashville I did this all the time, it worked pretty well.

    Things can change very quickly in the studio world. The studio that told you they didn't need any one yesterday, could very well need someone today. But they probably are not going to remember that they talked to you yesterday, or 3 days ago. They are going to give the job to whom ever is standing in front of them. You need to work at keep your name and face in the front of the minds of the people who stand to give you some work.

    After I finished up my internship in Nashville, I contacted another studio where I thought there was a good chance an assistant's position could open up. They started letting me come in on down days to learn the console, studio etc. They asked me to start coming in in the mornings when I could, to help assist the assistant. Well, the first morning I showed up to do that, the studio manager called me in to his office, asked if I was free that night. I said yes. He said "Great, we are going to need you to come in every night to work our night shift. We let the night shift guy go last night, and would like to give you a shot at it."

    Basically turns out that I was in the right place at the right time. But that's how it work's. It's not like an assistant is going to give 2 weeks notice and give the studio time to call in people for interviews and such, like what goes on in the real emplyment world. No, usually the assistant gets fired, or jsut stops showing up because he got a better gig. When that happens, the studio needs to get someone to fill their shoes immediately.

    So, get yourself out there! Good Luck!
  6. tofumusic

    tofumusic Guest

    That's a great post.. I've heard alot about people just being in the right place at the right time. . Like the assistant doesn't show or the engineer can't make it. In a way, personally, I see things like that as rewards.

    Which brings me to another question. . What are people most likely to be fired for in a studio environment.
    Off hand I can think of unethical things (stealing anything, (clients count too), bad attitude etc.), but have heard some real horror stories.. Like (for a runner) not chopping the fruit for the fruit bowl in perfect squares. .
  7. dustbro

    dustbro Guest

    What a waste of time... Studios don't need a resume' from someone who is going to get coffee. Besides that, they dont want someone who is already regularly practicing bad habbits.. they want someone who they can shape into a usable assistant for their facility. And don't call them on a regular basis. If they need you, they will take you on the spot. You're most likely not going to jump right into a paying assistant position either.. you'll have to intern at a place getting coffee and cleaning bathrooms until an event comes up where your services may be needed. If you are a complete moron, that chance will never come. You'll be cleaning toilets forever. If you are intelligent and know how to use ProTools, you will be useful to any studio. My suggestion is to start interning at the biggest studio in the area. That way, when you start assisting, it won't be for Joe Schmoe. it'll be for someone who really matters. You'll learn the most that way.
  8. EricK

    EricK Guest


    Maybe calling a studio every two weeks is pushing it a bit. But as for the resume, I think it is important. At least in a place like Nashville. It's a pretty tight knit community. I know for a fact the reason I was given a chance at many of the places I worked was because of the names on my resume.

    Your advice to start interning at the largest facility in the area is good advice. Your exposure is much greater at a large facility. Generally a large facility will have a few assistants on staff. The more assistants on the staff, the greater the chance one will leave, and you can be their replacement.
  9. djui5

    djui5 Guest

    Ok genius...............

    Studios who get a professional resume from someone who want's to be an intern will more likely hire that intern than a guy who just call's and say's..."can I scrub your toilets?, I'm too lazy to make a professional resume."

    The better the resume the more dedicated the person is.....

    Also...when showing up for interviews....don't wear t-shirts and crappy jeans.....dress like you want to succeed......act like a professional and you will become one.....trust me.

    It's a hard market....studios don't have the time or patience to mess with idiots.....there's too many studios closing and studios that do have work right now are doing everything possible to keep that work....having some half witted intern who could ruin a client's session and loose the studio a $hit load on money is un-accecptable.....
  10. tofumusic

    tofumusic Guest

    That's right I agree! 2 questions though.. If you make it as an intern/runner long enough for a pro studio to trust you well enough to let you begin to assist, do they usually expect you to know how to run a session, an SSL board (or whatever type of equipment they have) or are most pro studios willing to give you on the job training if you've worked (or if you continue to work) for it, oh yea and if they like you enough? I've heard of it taking close to 2 years for some of the bigger studios to start letting people even set foot in an actual session (unless they're bringing in food or something), which is understandable. I'm planning on trying to do something like this soon, to see where I'll end up if I give it my all- but I also want to be prepared, to make sure I know enough before I go into it. Like alot of people, I'm still debating as to the whole vocational school thing or just staying on this forum, reading books, mags and manuals just to have that extra confidence (since the majority in pro studios are probably coming fresh out of school).
  11. djui5

    djui5 Guest

    It really depends on the studio your at, the training you've had before interning, and how much they like you (which is really the biggest factor)...

    I've seen interns, who graduated from the same school as I did, not be able to understand how the outputs of PT's was running into the 9000J when we were mixing......
    I've also seen interns that never worked in a studio before pick up concepts I haven't thought of or haden't paid attention to...

    It's really all about attitude....and kissing the right a$$.....

    Sierously...don't be scared to brown nose, schmooze, get people their favorite candy bars for no reason......kiss a$$.....it will get you everywhere.

    I'd recommend getting a degree too...a lot of high profile studios won't hire interns that don't have a degree.......studios like that are more complicated than you can imagine and it's too easy to destroy things/sessions if you don't have at least a small grasp of what's going on.
  12. dustbro

    dustbro Guest

    Hey guy... I love the tone! Anyway, I'm only speaking on years of experience in the trenches on NYC studios. Most of the studio managers laugh at resumes.
    This isn't a 9-5 job. It's an art. Before you can become artistic, you must scrub toilets.
  13. dustbro

    dustbro Guest

    Actually, with studios closing, they want more people to work for FREE... that makes it easier for the intern who is looking for a start.
    And what kind of place have you ever seen where a studio manager would put the INTERN in a position to ruin a session? Besides tripping on a cord on the way into the control room to take lunch orders, the Studio Assistant Engineer is responsible for everything else.
  14. RAIN0707

    RAIN0707 Guest

    Stay late as possible. After sessions are over. Don't necessarily bug the senior engineers but analyze the console...the patchbays...and then go home and read up on what they are used for...how they work..etc etc...do you homework on your own cause no one is gonna have time after a long, tiring session to teach you everything. Plus, showing them that you are eager and taking an initiative to increase your own knowledge will gain some respect. A day gone by with nothing new learned is a day totally wasted. If you have already done all this then I would suggest looking for studios that allow freelance engineers to bring projects in and see if you can land some projects of your own. That is a true test. Put an ad out in some paper looking to cut some cheap demos or something for some local bands and then see if you can bring them into a nice studio to work with them. That's what I am doing right now and it's paying the bills nicely :)

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