Interview with Grammy Award winning Sound Engineer Steve Price
I recently had the pleasure of conducting an interview with Steve Price, who is a grammy award winning sound engineer.
I hope you enjoy this interview as much as I did.
1) I am aware of your reason and history of why you got in to the music industry but others haven't. Can you tell us a little of your history, and how you came to work as a sound engineer in the music business
My introduction to the music industry was for my father Ronnie Price he was one of the top session musicians of his day and when I was a child I would to go to the studio many times with him. I also learn’t the piano when I was a young boy but I was learning scales and I wanted to play the kind of thing he was playing. I ended up not enjoying learning the piano at all, (something I now regret of course) and gave it up, but first time I went into the control room in a recording studio and I saw all the buttons and lights I thought “now that's a job I'd like to do!”
So that became a focus of my attention and that was the only thing I could think of doing much to my careers teachers dislike.
I Managed to get a job as a tape operator at CTS studios in Wembley at the age of 18 and over the next few years work with some of the top engineers and producers in the world. I worked on films like “The Mission” and “Who Framed Roger Rabbit” amongst others.
At 21 I was promoted to engineer and for the next few years worked my way up. In 1993 I moved to work at Angel Studios where I still am today. Sadly It is one of the few big studios left in London now as most of them have closed due to new technology and the fact the the real estate they were built on is worth much more than a studio could ever make.
2) If you hadn't of gone in to the music business, what path or profession would you have taken?
Have absolutely no idea what I would've done if I didn't do what I do today and it's all I can ever think of as a child. I guess there's a good chance I'll be unemployable!
3) I know you have worked with some amazing singers etc over a number of genres. Which in particular stands out for you and why? Have you a favourite that you can tell us about?
At the age of 21 I worked with Michael Jackson, he was on the”Bad” tour, We were doing some recording for the film “Moonwalker” he made. I don't think I have ever been so nervous in my life but he was very nice to me and we got on well. I then went to see the show at Wembley Stadium and some of the work we had been doing had made it in the show, a huge buzz!I Recently had the opportunity to work on an album with Stevie Wonder, truly one of my musical heroes, a fantastic way to spend four days in A recording studio I’m not sure it get’s any better than that.I also recorded some of the album for Sam Smith “In the Lonely Hour” He is a fantastic singer with what seemed to me to be no fear, just went in and sang, great to be a part of.
4) What is your favourite genre, or genres of music that you listen to when relaxing away from work? Have you a favourite band / bands or musicians / singers?I don’t think I have a favourite Genre or style of Music that I like. I get to work in so many different fields, I always find something I like within each project that I work on or listen to. I feel It is wrong to dismiss an entire style of music as some people do. i.e. “I hate Jazz” Jazz music has so many facets to it and a lot of it shaped the way modern music is today.
5) If you could take just one album with you to a desert island, what would it be?
Sorry, I don’t think it could be one album.I guess one of my favourite singers is Frank SinatraOne of favourite bands, Earth, Wind and Fire.But I guess I could also nameBilly JoelBeyonceCount BasieDonald FagenDirty LoopsFoo FightersOscar PetersonSupertrampGino VannelliThe list goes on and on with no particular style or genre. I think that’s how I like it
6) I know you have won and been nominated for numerous awards, can you tell us what they are and how you felt when you received a) the nominations and b) hearing you had won?
It is always lovely to be up for awards, I have been fortunate to have been nominated for 4 Grammys and won 2 The first with Adele and the second this year with Sam Smith. Winning is amazing, but just being nominated and involved is right up there as well.
7) Do you always work in the same studio / studios to do your mixing or, do you get to travel to work?
I work mostly in London, My base is at Angel Studios in islington, But I have travelled quite a bit for work, My most recent outing was to Prague to record the orchestra of the TV show “Musketeers”
8) Is there an individual, band or particular type of music you aspire to that you have not had the opportunity of working with as yet?
Love to do a full on Rock album! AC/DC were the very first band I ever saw in 1980, that has stuck with me. Love to work with them.
9) Favourite dish to eat? and where? Eat with family, fancy restaurant or maybe even a picnic on the beach or out and about somewhere special?
I go to Las Vegas a bit with my wife and we have had some of what I consider the best food ever there, Last year we went to Jean Georges at Aira and had the very best Steak I have ever tasted, It was incredible! I don’t know how they did it, I have tried at home and don’t come anywhere close.
I am also very happy sitting by a pool, in the shade (engineers don’t get to see the sun much) drinking a glass of wine and eating some cheese, fabulous.
10) Finally Where do you see yourself in ten years time? Where would you like to see yourself and what would you be doing?
In 10 years time I would hope to still be doing what I am doing now, I am very fortunate to be doing a job I absolutely love. I cant see it being any better than that.
It could be a lot worse, I could have to work for a living!
I love the last picture of Steve