SoundGirls Spotlight

Ali "AMAC" McGuire

Mix Engineer - Vocal Producer

Hear Their Career

Location
Los Angeles

How did you become a producer/sound engineer?
After I dropped out of college I decided to go to audio school. I did a quick 6-month program and then hit the ground running. I took work anywhere I could for whoever was willing to let me work. I eventually ran out of money and stumbled across a gig at the upstairs of a local venue called the Legendary Dobbs in Philadelphia doing FOH (Live Sound) for local bands. That led to a chain of events of me working all over the city and eventually touring. I did that for about 6 years.  After that, I did a nationwide tour with Fetty Wap and Post Malone and realized I needed to follow my first dream of doing studio work. So I packed up my bag and moved to LA. I once again worked with anyone who was willing to work with me or even talk with me and that led to a chain of events of me working all over LA with major labels and artists. So how did I become an engineer? Networking and a lot of hours honing in my skill so when I got myself in the rooms they would ask me to stay.

What advice would you give students either going into school or just graduating about getting a job in this industry?
Only do it if you can’t live without doing it. This business is not something you jump into lightly. The rewards are high and the lows are low.  There will be days where it feels like you can’t get a yes to save your life and in all those times of self-doubt, you will have to find a way to keep going.

What are the major qualities required to be a good sound engineer in your opinion?
Patience. Patience. Patience. Whether that is patience with yourself while you are learning the craft, patience with your clients when they are trying to tell you what they want or patience it takes to troubleshoot an issue. Our main goal as engineers and producers is to help artists achieve the vision they want for themselves. We express ourselves by helping other people express themselves. Stay humble. There’s a lot of times you might know more but that doesn’t mean you know what’s right. Stay focused on the goal of expression more than the goal of making things sound perfect while still making things sounds better than your client ever imagined.

What is your recording/producing philosophy?
Do what’s right for the project. Never stop encouraging the artist. If things don’t sound right…Say something, Push the limits of sound. Be cool.

What producers/engineers inspire/inspired you?
Tony Maseratti, Serban Ghenaea, Marcella Araica, Josh Gudwin, Al Schmidt, Jaycen Joshua

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