Grammy nominated and industry quality talent to write, record, produce, mix, and master music.
Umbo Gumbo LLC is a collaborative organization that has access to top quality professional musicians and producers to help anyone at any level take their project "to the next level." We have experience working with all levels of talent from beginners to top pros. Our production team is headed by Polo Jones, the musical director and bass player for the international superstar "Zucchero." Along with Polo, we have access to a pool of young talented musicians in the band "Mattson", all available to participate in the creative process as well as lending their significant skills to augmenting or recording musical parts. There are multiple mix engineers available in 2 high quality studios located on both the east and west coasts of the USA. Each studio has a specific vibe and feel and offers the user a wide variety of styles to complete their project. We are a very unique organization and many of our clients remain close with us for long periods of time.
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Interview with Umbo Gumbo LLC
Q: Tell us about a project you worked on you are especially proud of and why. What was your role?
A: Both of us have too many projects we are proud of to mention. Some of them are available on our website. The Mattson project has been our latest large scale project and we are very happy with it's success.
Q: Can you share one music production tip?
A: Don't spend too much time trying to sound like someone else. We encourage our clients to discover their own voice. Also, we don't focus on the technology too much and try to capture the unique features of our artists.
Q: What's your strongest skill?
A: We have a unique ability to elevate any project no matter how sophisticated or basic. We also have significant connections with many different types of musicians that we can use on our projects
Q: Describe the most common type of work you do for your clients.
A: Most artists come to us with some basic tracks and a vision of where they want us to help them go. We take their demo ideas and decide on the best plan for tracking the final product. Depending on the artist, we can augment the project with some high quality players to help give the artist a unique sound.
Q: What are you working on at the moment?
A: We have committed ourselves to helping the young band "Mattson" as they work their way up the musical ladder.
Q: Is there anyone on SoundBetter you know and would recommend to your clients?
A: We are new to SoundBetter
Q: Analog or digital and why?
A: Both of our studios are hybrid. Paul and Dave have both spent years with analog studios and know what the traditional sound of tape and consoles sounds like. We use our digital platforms to achieve the power and presence of analog but utilize the unique capabilities of digital.
Q: What's your 'promise' to your clients?
A: That the process will be fun and rewarding
Q: What do you like most about your job?
A: The chance to meet interesting people and create music with them.
Q: What questions do customers most commonly ask you? What's your answer?
A: How much does it cost and how long will it take. We try to be realistic as to the cost and timing. We are all working musicians and Polo tours the world with Zucchero, so we need to have realistic expectations. We also do not have fixed prices. We scale our fees based on each individual project
Q: What's the biggest misconception about what you do?
A: That it is easy. We spend a great deal of time making sure that our product is a good as it can be.
Q: What questions do you ask prospective clients?
A: We spend a great deal of time trying to understand our clients. We want to know exactly where they are at in their path. We also want our clients to have a clear understanding of what it will take to realize their goal. We don't over promise. High quality products take time and effort and we want our clients to clearly understand the process.
Q: What advice do you have for a customer looking to hire a provider like you?
A: Look around at all the options. Make sure you trust the producer you end up working with. Have a strong idea of what you want to accomplish and have realistic expectations. We offer a unique approach of having multiple individuals with different skill sets as well as different studios we can utilize.
Q: If you were on a desert island and could take just 5 pieces of gear, what would they be?
A: Food, water, and a guitar (We only need 3 things!)
Q: What was your career path? How long have you been doing this?
A: Polo was born into a musical family and starting touring with John Lee Hooker at age 13. Dave began playing piano and guitar at age 5. Both of us have spent 40+ years playing, recording, and producing music.
Q: How would you describe your style?
A: We work collaboratively with our clients to help them achieve their goals. We make suggestions and provide our experience but in the end, we try to help our artists develop their own "voice."
Q: Which artist would you like to work with and why?
A: Anyone reading this. We love working with new artists to help them succeed.
Q: What type of music do you usually work on?
A: We work in multiple genres and enjoy bringing elements of Americana, Pop, Rock, Country, and R&B into any project.
Q: What do you bring to a song?
A: We bring many years of experience in multiple aspects of the music business. Polo has been a recording and touring musician who has played with many "name" artists. He brings his wealth of experience to every project. Dave has engineered and mixed many projects alongside Polo and has access to many talented young artists who can participate with our clients.
Q: What's your typical work process?
A: We usually meet with the artists to get a feel for where they are at. We then review any existing tracks. We also can suggest additional musicians that can elevate the project if needed.
Q: Tell us about your studio setup.
A: We have 2 full service studios, one on the east coast and the other on the west coast. Both feature high quality rooms for drum tracking with state-of-the-art DAWs, extensive plug-ins, high quality class A mic preamps, as well as a host of high end microphones and other outboard gear.
Q: What other musicians or music production professionals inspire you?
A: We are inspired by both "old school" music as well as new young musicians creating high quality sounds.