I’m Robyn

MELBOURNE
MUSIC PRODUCER

Music is my passion and always has been.

I love playing live music.

I love working in the studio.

I love breathing life into songs through production, performance and engineering.

Most of all I love seeing the joy in my clients as they hear their songs come to life.

MUSIC PRODUCER

I’m an Australian music producer, based in Melbourne. My clients are many and varied – advertising agencies, film producers, bands, but often they are singer-songwriters. They’ll come with a song, their voice and they might play guitar or piano. In these cases, I’ll typically be producing and arranging as well as playing many or all of the parts. Other clients will bring a band, so my role becomes more one of producer/engineer, along the way giving them as much input as they want or need.

Songwriters, myself included sometimes refer to songs as our babies. Songs come from somewhere deep inside, in a way we’ll never fully understand. They can be deeply personal and dear to us. That’s why when a songwriter comes to me, I’m respectful about my role as a music producer. I’ll offer suggestions I believe will enhance the song, but I’ll never change the song in a way that loses the writer’s intention. The song is king. Good production should elevate the song, but without turning it into something else.

MUSIC PRODUCTION

As a music producer, my clients are many and varied – advertising agencies, film producers, bands, but often they are singer-songwriters who want their songs brought to life. They’ll come with a song, their voice and they might play guitar or piano. In these cases, I’ll typically be producing and arranging as well as playing many or all of the parts. Other clients will bring a band, so my role becomes more one of producer/engineer, along the way giving them as much input as they want or need.

Songwriters, myself included sometimes refer to songs as our children. Songs come from somewhere deep inside, in a way we’ll never fully understand. They can be deeply personal and dear to us. That’s why when a songwriter comes to me, I’m respectful about my role as a music producer. I’ll offer suggestions I believe will enhance the song, but I’ll never change the song in a way that loses the writer’s intention. The song is king. Good production should elevate the song, but without turning it into something else.

I’ve been working professionally as a session musician, performer and producer for over 30 years, and so have built a broad repertoire of music styles. I’m comfortable producing pop, rock, country, funk, dance, R&B, soul, Celtic, new age, classical and more, from the simplest delicate arrangements to bands to full orchestration.

In music production, experience counts. Let’s pour some of that experience into your next project.

MIX ENGINEERING

When I was in my late teens and early twenties I used to get regular work as a session player in Melbourne’s biggest recording studios. This is back in the days of 2 inch 24 track Studer tape machines and MCI desks. After my parts were down I’d find myself hanging out with the engineer at the desk, chatting about signal paths, compression, subtractive EQ and general approaches to recording. I’ve never studied formally, but I’ve been learning ever since. On the job.

Mixing is a black art. There is no right or wrong way to mix a song. No special reverb setting. No magic plug-in. It’s a complex process and above all relies on your ears and experience. Today’s DAW’s (Digital Audio Workstations) with their many plug-ins have brought huge advances, but just as many opportunities to get-it-wrong.

It’s one thing to be recording your own songs in your home or project studio. It’s another thing entirely to be mixing them. A good mix can correct mistakes made during the recording process, give clarity, definition and dynamics. A good mix can make the difference between an amateur production and release-quality production.

MIX ENGINEER

When I was in my late teens and early twenties I used to get regular work as a session player in Melbourne’s biggest recording studios. This is back in the days of 2 inch 24 track Studer tape machines and MCI, Harrison and Neve desks. After my parts were down I’d find myself hanging out with the engineer at the desk, chatting about signal paths, compression, subtractive EQ and general approaches to recording. I’ve never studied formally, but I’ve been learning ever since. On the job.

Mixing is a black art. There is no right or wrong way to mix a song. No special reverb setting. No magic plug-in. It’s a complex process and above all relies on your ears and experience. Today’s DAW’s (Digital Audio Workstations) with their many plug-ins have brought huge advances, but just as many opportunities to get-it-wrong.

It’s one thing to be recording your own songs in your home or project studio. It’s another thing entirely to be mixing them. A good mix can correct mistakes made during the recording process, give clarity, definition and dynamics. A good mix can make the difference between an amateur production and release-quality production.

My Services

My Services

Music Production

In short, music production is what I do. All the other services listed here are essentially sub-sets of the complete music production service. I can provide the entire service or as much or as little as is required.

recording & editing

I’ve recorded everything from rock drums to an orchestral harp. As a musician/engineer, I keep a sharp ear on the performance. Of course, fast and accurate editing is a critical part of the process. Also, see my Studio and Piano pages

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mix engineering

I can mix your multi-track recordings whether they’ve been recorded in another studio, your own home studio or live. This may also include general cleaning up and editing as well as timing and pitch corrections.

performance

As a multi-instrumentalist with cupboards of instruments and a vast sample library I can perform everything in-house. In addition, I have access to Melbourne’s best session musicians and vocalists.

vocal production

My first priority when producing vocals is to put the singer at ease by providing a comfortable, low-stress environment and a good headphone mix. The lead vocal is the ‘money track’ and I make sure we get that great take quickly without tiring out the vocalist.

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composition

More often than not a music producer works on someone else’s music. However, if you need music, a song or even a jingle composed, I’ve written commissioned music for feature-length films, short films, TV shows, TV themes and countless commercials for TV, radio and the internet.

songwriting assistance

If you have written lyrics and melody but don’t understand music I can assist with harmonisation (chords). Perhaps you’re stuck on that elusive bridge or simply want an honest appraisal or some suggestions. I can also write the complete melodic part of the song to your lyrics.

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orchestration

Orchestral arranging is a skill honed over many years. Sample libraries have become so good that I’ve found great results can be achieved using them along with a small number of live musicians.

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mastering

I think of mixing as the art of combining the individual tracks of a recording into a complete song. Mastering is the art of combining all the songs into a complete album and into the required format for its intended use. It can also make a track punch more and stand up against other commercial releases.

Testimonials

Testimonials

Music Producer

FAQ

What does a music producer do?

In short, I see my role as music producer is to capture the essence and emotion of a song in recorded form. I will enhance it without transforming it, but can transform it if that’s what’s required, bringing the song to life whilst ensuring a stress-free and enjoyable process.

In more detail, that means analysing the music and considering the best way to present it. What is the purpose of the production? (eg: a demo, commercial release, keepsake). Would the music benefit if some parts were changed, added or removed? Does the writer or the band have specific requests? What instruments or vocals would enhance it? Who will be playing and singing – the artists, band members, myself, session players? What is the budget? And so on. It is my role to consider all these things.

When it comes to the recording process, traditionally the music producer would be seen working alongside and directing the artist, musicians, engineer, arranger and often others. Today those roles tend to overlap. I am almost always the engineer as well as producer and often the arranger and musician. Being both engineer and producer enables me to manage a smooth efficient flow of the recording process whilst also keeping a working mix which the artist can readily review. Being multi-instrumental I am easily able to communicate with other musicians, and also play parts as needed.

If you’re a vocalist, my goal is to create a relaxed environment, give you a great headphone mix and guide you through the song, giving feedback, suggestions and encouragement to get the best possible result. I tend towards a session that flows and has spontaneity, rather than endless takes. I’m always on the look out for a great natural performance – any rough edges can often be touched up in the mix.

I can’t read or write music. What do I need to bring into the studio before I begin?

All I need is to hear the song in some rough form. For instance, you could send a simple recording you made on your phone or you could sing it to me in the studio. You’ll also need to convey the harmony (chords ) you’ve written, for instance played on guitar or piano. If you don’t have chords, also see “I have written some lyrics, but not the music. Can you help finish my song?”

It’s helpful if you can point me toward another song or songs that have elements which you would like included in your song. This way I don’t head in the wrong direction with the production style. You can bring a recording of a song or send links to existing songs for me to reference.

I have written some lyrics, but not the music. Can you help finish my song?

Yes, I have some writers who come to me on this basis. In this instance we share ownership in the song 50/50, as a song is considered 50% lyrics and 50% music.

I also have some writers who come to me with lyrics and a melody for those lyrics, but no harmony (commonly called chords). In this case I harmonise (write chords for) the song and would have a 25% share.

I don’t know any musicians so how do we go about producing my song?

Many of the my productions are done single-handed (ok, two hands). I’m proficient on bass, keys and guitar and have developed my own technique to play drums samples live via keyboard – I’ve had professional drummers hear my drum programming and ask me who played drums! I also have access to Melbourne’s finest session musicians and singers. It all depends on the song, its requirements and your budget. As music producer, I’ll guide you through the process and make recommendations.

Can you write the manuscript for my song?

I can write manuscript for a complete song as well as individual parts as required, for example brass or string parts for a recording session. However depending on the size of the job, I work with professional arrangers which I may recommend as they do this all the time and will be better value.

Keep in mind manuscript is not required if your goal is to record the song in the studio. When I produce a song, I don’t need manuscript. Some people like to have the melody, lyrics and chords written out as a keepsake which I can do for you.

How do I get copyright to make sure no one steals my song?

Songwriters often worry that someone is going to steal their song. I have good news and good news. The good news is that song theft is extremely uncommon. I know a couple of very experienced music lawyers who can count on one hand the number of times they’ve seen it happen. The other good news is that copyright is free and automatic. As soon as you’ve made a recording of a song, whether it be in a studio, on your phone, or written on manuscript, as long as there is some proof of date (which digital recordings usually have), then you as writer automatically own the copyright in the song. You simply need to present that recording and its date to prove that the song is yours. For instance if I produced your song, you’d have the recording, we’d have email entries with dates and I’d have the digital production files with dates in my archives. That’s more than enough proof.

We’re a band. What are the advantages of coming to you instead of a regular studio with an engineer?

It all depends on what you’re looking for. If you’re happy with your sound, your style, your musicianship, your direction, then a recording studio with an engineer may be all that you need.

However there are two levels of support I can offer above that of “studio with engineer:”

1) Studio with musician/engineer: Recording with musician/engineers such as myself can increase the efficiency of the session and improve the end result. During a recording session I’m not only monitoring the technical aspects of the recording but I’m also listening to the musical performance and leading the session based on that performance. A productive recording session needs to flow so a good engineer will constantly make decisions on the spot whether to stop and fix, or keep recording and fix later. If that engineer is also a musician they are better equipped for such decisions, plus they are better able to communicate with musicians.

For more complex arrangements I can follow a score to make sure parts are being played correctly. This makes it less likely that errors in the recording will go un-noticed and be difficult to repair once the musicians have all gone home. It also takes some pressure off the band leader / arranger during the recording.

This all makes for a fast, efficient session, confident in the knowledge that someone with “good ears” has it all in hand. My rate will likely be higher compared to studio-with-engineer, but the time taken to record will likely be less, so at the end of the day there may be little difference in cost. And musically, the end result will almost certainly be better.

2) Studio with Producer/engineer: If you’ve got the songs and the band, but your direction is still unclear, or you need help musically, I can guide and advise as music producer. I’ve performed, taught and produced in music styles including rock, prog-rock, classical, country, jazz, dance/electronic, chill, to name but a few.

Can you record an orchestra on my song?

There are several ways to achieve this. The simplest and cheapest is for me to produce in-house using my East West Platinum Orchestra sample library. If there are any feature or specialist parts, I have access to Melbourne’s finest session players. The results are so good that it’s difficult to tell from a full orchestra.

However, if a real orchestra is actually needed then the process is to produce a draft for approval using the sample library, have charts produced and finally record. The recording can done here in Melbourne however I also have access to a very affordable orchestra in Prague – we simply connect with them via Zoom to give feedback at the time of recording. Once their recording is completed they send the recorded orchestral tracks over to me to mix in my studio.

Our band has a brass section. Can you record them too?

Yes, I have loads of experience recording the best brass players in Melbourne. Many have said how much they love their sound when recorded here. It’s probably due to my years of experience playing with them on stage and in television bands, therefore I know how they are supposed to sound.