Chris Sugiura

Mixing Engineer, Bassist

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2 Reviews
Chris Sugiura on SoundBetter

Hello, I'm Chris! My passion is helping translate an artist's internal vision and getting it onto "tape". I've been producing, engineering and mixing records for the last decade and would love to help you amplify your sound. I believe in finding the right fit for making records. If you listen to any of my work and feel some connection, reach out!

I am currently working out of my home, in the box (ITB) studio. While I have access to various studios, I find my workflow (and budget) is best when working in my own space. The studio is equipped with a Universal Apollo and majority of the UA plugins. I also use: Fabfilter, Plugin Alliance, Soundtoys and Slate Digital among many others. I use an SSL UF8 for fader riding automation. My preferred DAW to work in is Pro Tools. While prices are generally fixed, I'm always open to negotiation and seeing if I can work within your budget.

MIXING/MASTERING:
My approach is that you send me your individual tracks or busses (typically keeping your processing), your favorite rough mix and at least one general reference track or album. From there I will listen, contemplate and craft a mix to the best of my abilities. I enjoy asking questions to ensure delivering the best product. Turnaround time is usually quick but often based on a couple factors that we will discuss.

PRODUCING/ENGINEERING:
If you are in the NY area and would like to discuss creating or working on tracks in person, contact me!

BASS:
Whether you want me to construct a bass line or are looking for a more precise execution, I'm your guy. Contact me for further discussion.

I'd love to hear about your project. Click the 'Contact' button above to get in touch.

Credits

Discogs verified credits for Chris Sugiura
  • Mighty Tiny
  • The Painted Horses
  • Lords of Sealand
  • Smokin' Ziggurats
  • Duncan Nielsen*
  • DonCat
  • DonCat
  • Lords of Sealand
  • Tim Cohen (2)
  • Smokin' Ziggurats
  • PRYS
  • KKY
  • Smokin' Ziggurats
  • James Devane
  • Duncan Nielsen*
  • Smokin' Ziggurats
  • DonCat
  • Matt Pond PA
  • DonCat
  • Lords of Sealand
  • Tim Cohen (2)
  • Smokin' Ziggurats
  • PRYS
  • Goodnight, Texas
  • Various
  • Smokin' Ziggurats
  • James Devane

Languages

  • English

2 Reviews

Endorse Chris Sugiura
  1. Review by James Devane
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    by James Devane

    Chris has worked on mixing two of my records and I have been extremely happy with the results. It is clear he put a lot of thought into each mix, and gave me very clear and thorough notes about all the changes that happened. I learned a lot about mixing just from reading his notes! He was also fast, and very dedicated to making sure he got my tracks sounding the way I wanted. Highly recommend.

  2. Review by Kyle Kelly-Yahner
    starstarstarstarstar

    Chris has amazing ears, a knack for knowing exactly how to bring a sonic idea to life, and the chops to perfect that idea. Working with him on mixing and mastering my EP was a treat.

Interview with Chris Sugiura

  1. Q: Analog or digital and why?

  2. A: I will always believe in studios and consoles for producing and tracking. Getting out of your bedroom or usual music room and normal headspace can be such a large element in making something unique and great. For mixing, I believe that ITB digital mixes can yield similar, albeit different results to an analog mix.

  3. Q: What's your 'promise' to your clients?

  4. A: To deliver a product that I am 100% behind and to put my stamp of approval and name on. That doesn't always translate to the $20k pop mix of your dreams but I will do everything in my wheelhouse to get as close as possible!

  5. Q: What's the biggest misconception about what you do?

  6. A: Having a particular sound that can translate from record to record. As a producer who is constantly writing, creating tracks and arrangements, you can control majority of the sonic elements at your disposal. As an engineer and mixer, we are at the mercy of the information put in front of us. There are so many ways to produce a track, even if my tools are more or less the same, it always yields different results.

  7. Q: What questions do you ask prospective clients?

  8. A: Lots of questions! The more questions I ask and you answer, the better rapport we develop and the quicker we can be on the same page language wise. What does "warm" mean to you? Feels like a loaded question but really its a test on how to get me on the same page as you with terminology and knowledge.

  9. Q: What advice do you have for a customer looking to hire a provider like you?

  10. A: Be prepared and understand the difference in professional courtesy and personal investment.

  11. Q: What was your career path? How long have you been doing this?

  12. A: My goals have always been the same: work with great artists I believe in and help them make great records. I've been a freelance engineer since 2011 when I made my first studio record in Somerville, MA. I spent the last decade in the Bay Area and am now trying to make more industry moves in NYC.

  13. Q: How would you describe your style?

  14. A: Adaptive. I don't believe I have a "sound" or a particular element as a go to. As a producer I will be your day to day management, arranger, lyrical editor, therapist or simply a guiding hand. The excitement of making records is that each artist and project present uniquely different challenges and goals. My job is to meet the expectations to the best of my ability and fill in the gaps that need to be filled.

  15. Q: Can you share one music production tip?

  16. A: Workflow is more important than leaving room for creativity. If you are prepared and cover your bases at each step of the recording process (pre production/tracking/overdubs/mixing/mastering), the random creative ideas will naturally flow into the sessions and songs. Leaving unknown variables and loopholes in hopes that creativity strikes will almost always create disappointment and unintended pressure.

  17. Q: What type of music do you usually work on?

  18. A: I enjoy working on projects in the many rock n roll genres most. That flavor speaks to my ears the most. That being said, sometimes working outside of what you love yields the best results...

  19. Q: What's your strongest skill?

  20. A: Communication. The easiest way for all parties to be satisfied is to be as communicative as possible. If the work isnt to you liking after the first pass, tell me. There are never hard feelings about making the client happy.

  21. Q: What do you bring to a song?

  22. A: Experience in listening and working on music for the better parts of two decades. There is no ego for me in mixing. I don't necessarily see it as artistic or creative in the sense that I am trying to bring more to the table. My job is to use what ingredients are there and ultimately make your production to make it the best it can be.

  23. Q: What's your typical work process?

  24. A: Once the "stems", rough mix and references are received, I will import them into a session and make sure the tracks are identical to the rough mix. From there I will bounce between the rough mix and the references until I feel like I have a solid understanding on where to take the tune. While my workflow varies, I will typically finish my first pass early in the day, reference on different speakers and devices while making notes and tweak the pass in the afternoon. I'm usually great for finishing one mix per day, but it depends a lot on you and the material you send!

  25. Q: Tell us about your studio setup.

  26. A: Currently running an almost total in the box (ITB) setup. Universal Audio Apollo as my front end if I need to track anything and also as my back end for mixing. The UAD plugins have been the standard in my arsenal for a long time, they are so great and musical.

  27. Q: What other musicians or music production professionals inspire you?

  28. A: Blake Mills. I respect him as both a talented musician and writer and as a fantastic producer. From more pop/rock records to artistically diverse stuff. It's all great!

  29. Q: Describe the most common type of work you do for your clients.

  30. A: Since the pandemic, remote mixing. Clients will send me their best production mixes (with effects they've selected) and send me individual tracks or groups to be taken to the next level. For remote mixing, the chosen effects help give a broader picture of what they are going for. That paired with a rought mix and couple references and we are good to go!

Gear Highlights
  • Universal Apollo
  • SSL UF8
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