I’ve dedicated the last 20 years to music: learning multiple instruments, playing live shows, engineering/mixing, etc. My history has led me to assist other artists in getting the sound they are seeking. I understand the process and put massive work ethic, my heart and soul into giving you a product you can be proud of. Let’s work together!
Mixing a song from start to finish is likely a one week project (varies per project) depending on the amount of editing and versions required. It is more important to get it right. One of the most important parts of mixing is the initial recording; make sure you have high quality recorded tracks with plenty of headroom so I have good ingredients to mix with.
It starts with an idea. One part of production is song-writing and arrangement, while other parts include sound design, instrument choice, and production texturing. There are varying levels of production which can drastically change per genre. Some prefer light production while others prefer highly processed songs. A high effort in production does not necessarily mean synthetic songs. Songs can be organic wherein the production part of these songs if making sure you get “that” sound you heard in your head.
Recording / tracking is one of the most important steps—after songwriting — to end up with a pristine final product. If you are on a budget and can’t afford a major studio, we may be a good fit. My home recording studio has all the needs for a full band: drums, guitars, vocals, and keyboard/synths. I recommend first putting together a rough demo of your song before this phase.
- Receive files
- 1st draft
- Final product
I'd love to hear about your project. Click the 'Contact' button above to get in touch.
1 ReviewsEndorse Shaun Mykal Walker
Shawn Walker will help you sound better than you ever imagined. Stylistically some engineers are stuck in the past or present. Shawn has his hand on all timelines. Knowledgeable of frequency placements, EQ sweep, plug in heaven, outboard gear, tone, etc.
Your stuck? your lost? Let him help you. Be open to feedback. He wants a win for your mix, as much as you do. Hire Mr. Shawn Walker.
Interview with Shaun Mykal Walker
Q: Tell us about a project you worked on you are especially proud of and why. What was your role?
A: My solo work is something I am proud of. One of my most recent songs "Carpe Diem" did very well on Spotify with over 24K streams and on YouTube, 34K views. I wrote, produced, performed, tracked, and mixed this song from start to finish. I am happy with the results and paired it with a cool video. I'm hoping for some more gems like this that get even more notoriety.
Q: What are you working on at the moment?
A: I am mixing a post-hardcore song for the band Thus Far. I've worked with them before and they decided to use my services again! This song is heavy and full of screams -- love it. Looking forward to the end product.
Q: Is there anyone on SoundBetter you know and would recommend to your clients?
A: I've worked with one person on SoundBetter but ended up going with a company rather than an individual user (per this project, that is what was needed). I haven't worked with enough people to recommend someone, but I'll make sure to investigate more.
Q: Analog or digital and why?
A: A mix. Analogue in always sounds better coming in. It's easier to work with tracks that are already in good shape. I also like putting analogue gear on my master bus. I seldom use analogue on individual track mixing because (A) it's much too expensive and (B) it slows the work flow. Some analogue gear actually sounds worse than without it. It's the expensive gear that usually sounds better but it will empty your wallet real fast. IN short, I'm a hybrid mixer where analogue is best for me during tracking and on the master bus.
Q: What's your 'promise' to your clients?
A: I promise I'll make 1000 mixes until your happy with the product. It's more about getting something we are both happy and can stamp our name to. I will make the song sound like what your head perceives.
Q: What do you like most about your job?
A: It's a challenge. Every mix is a different equation. I can't always apply the same methods and have to think outside the box. There is always the opportunity to do something that no one else has done before. I also love when a client says "how did you do that?!", it's a great feeling when they get a piece of work back they didn't expect would sound better then what they thought.
Q: What questions do customers most commonly ask you? What's your answer?
A: Can you make the guitars punchier? Yes! Sometimes the recording has a low frequency (depending on how it was recorded) that kills the punch or a high-hiss due to too much trebly gain. I removed that using multi-band compression and combine this with a parallel amp modeling track. A good recording will always beat out any processing, but my processing usually does the trick. I always ask if they have DI tracks or other takes that aren't as muddy -- sometimes, processing can't fix everything.
Q: What's the biggest misconception about what you do?
A: That I'm just starting out. I haven't just started out. Recently, I've made mixing more of a profession. I don't do this for money, I do this as it's what gets me up in the morning. My job pays the bills for music. Because of this, I don't have the accolades some other mixers may have, but I share similar skills; in time, I will have those accolades.
Q: What questions do you ask prospective clients?
A: What get's you up in the morning? What are your goals and objectives? What do you want this song to sound like? Who is your inspiration? How important is the right song vs the right production? Are you on a strict budget? Who have you worked with in the past; what did they do well vs what could they have done better? Why did you choose me?
Q: What advice do you have for a customer looking to hire a provider like you?
A: Work with someone who can be passionate alongside you, who does this to feed their soul, not purely for money. Look for someone you can grow with and is eager to learn and adapt.
Q: If you were on a desert island and could take just 5 pieces of gear, what would they be?
A: Going to make believe there is power on the island and choose: computer (can't live without that), drum set, SG guitar, Mojave mic, and UAD interface/preamp.
Q: What was your career path? How long have you been doing this?
A: I've been an artist for 20 years and mixing for about 10 of those. I wasn't until recently (when I could afford gear) that I really stepped up my game. I've taken many mixing classes, worked live sound and mixed plenty of artists (including myself). I'm hoping for a breakout artist to get to "the next level". I'm currently getting Protools certified as part of my never-ending learning journey.
Q: How would you describe your style?
A: I am soul influenced. Lyrics are important to me and I want them to jump out. I like edge and find myself having more dense mixes these days. Most of my music is bittersweet. I like darker subject material and sounds. My style is really an accumulation of vintage soul, edgy instruments, and overall punch.
Q: Which artist would you like to work with and why?
A: I really love Bishop Briggs vocals. I would love to sit down with her and work on a song together. She has this classic soul voice that I truly love. She has an edge to her I like as well as the note choices she picks. I would love to work on an edgey soul infused rock/electronic song with her. #dream.
Q: Can you share one music production tip?
A: To create separation for loud instruments (snare, vocals) I do a couple things: 1) for the snare, I always side chain compress the overhead mics. I dip them around 1 - 2 dbs when the snare hits. This makes the snare much fatter. I also use parallel compression on the snare to get warmth combined with attack. 2) for vocals, I bus all music to a separate stereo track and dip the EQ where the vocals sit. This give nice separation. I also use a couple stereo imaging plugins to widen or narrow vocals/music until they have even more separation. The same trick for the snare, I apply to vocals; I side chain bus any reverbs and delays so the initial hit of the vocal can be heard where the tail of reverbs and delay pops just shortly after. This helps with diction and creates a nice smooth and creamy sound.
Q: What type of music do you usually work on?
A: I typically work on rock projects although I have mixed: world, electronic, acoustic, pop, etc. I like rock as those are my roots. I also like the punch of live drums -- can't beat it.
Q: What's your strongest skill?
A: Creating punch and separate between music and vocals. I want to hear what the artist is saying so diction is important to come through via compression and transient tricks. I am also an artist first so I understand the whole process, not just one part.
Q: What do you bring to a song?
A: 20 years of writing and performing experience. Nuances of learning whether through online classes or hands-on experience. I have a keen ear for every instrument as I've prided myself on playing most of them. I know where they sit in the spectrum and truly understand what they should should like. I want to feel like I'm in the room and I bring that to every mix/production I work on.
Q: What's your typical work process?
A: First I like to understand the artist's goals and determine if we are a good fit. Then we discuss scheduling followed by receiving necessary files that I can review. After everything is accumulated, I start my process: comparing to reference tracks, cleaning up phase or timing issues, etc. Once all the framework is done, I make sure to listen to the context of the song and start to map out production/mixing ideas. I massage the project until my client is 100% happy, then I send out high quality files for them to get mastered and/or more.
Q: Tell us about your studio setup.
A: I have a mixing, instrument and drum room in my house. I purposely bought this house to build an at home studio. I mix through UAD hardware and software and use Protools as my DAW. I have a blend of hardware processing (e.g., SSL Fusion, Tegeler Tube EQs and Compressor, etc.) as well as a ton of plugins (e.g., UAD bundles).
Q: What other musicians or music production professionals inspire you?
A: Incubus, Bishop Briggs, Sam Cooke, Warren Huart, Stevie Wonder, Killswitch Engage, Avenged Sevenfold
Q: Describe the most common type of work you do for your clients.
A: I predominantly mix rock songs with an emphasis on vocals and guitar. I work with artists in developing vocals remote and at my studio. I also record all instruments at my studio for locals bands.