The music industry has felt the wrath of the COVID-19 pandemic across the globe. From touring musicians to roadies, producers and lighting-techs, each and every avenue of the business is feeling the pinch.
Thankfully there are fine folks like those at Orange County's MixOne Sound dedicated to helping those artists pivot to find creative ways to produce, create and share their talents with the masses, albeit from a distance.
MixOne Sound has created a unique state-of-the-art stream and broadcast sound stage solution for artists, organizations, creatives and many others. The company aims to bring artist-content to their audience while also adhering to social distancing and group gathering guidelines.
Led by industry leaders in stage building, design, audio/visual for performance and more, MixOne Sound has created a state-of-the-art stream and sound stage to be the answer to what many major label and independent artists have been seeking during these trying times.
With multiple angle live streams bringing a performance direct to viewers living rooms, the MixOne stage has been doubling as a set for artist music videos in multiple genres, with other content currently being created including film, commercials, educational, corporate and much more.
Metal Injection caught up with MixOne Sound's Video Partner and Director of Film Kevin Garcia to talk aiding artists during the pandemic, working with a variety of musicians in and out of the metal-spectrum – from Swae Lee, Diamante and Tinashe, to Fever 333, Animals As Leaders and Dance Gavin Dance – and much more!
As a member of the music community, how important is it for you to provide artists with viable alternatives to help perform, promote and give back to fans?
Being that a lot of our crew is or was touring full time pre-Covid, it's been incredibly important to help bring shows back and get them back to work as artists. A lot of artists over the years have become personal friends of ours and seeing this shift in what’s been going on, it's essential to keep shows alive to the best of our ability.
Fans crave music & performance as do the artists. It's their outlet and for some the reason for living. It's been months now so many people are tired of the Zoom concert or Instagram Live as it doesn’t feel like a show, so we did the best we could to bring a real show back with current restrictions. Lights, sound, full band, etc. It's still not a show in a traditional venue but it's about as close as we can get at this time and has been crucial to a lot of people's mental headspace and art.
What are some of the major things you're hearing from clients, particularly in the rock and metal spectrum? How has this pandemic impacted the way they do business and/or strive to get content out into the marketplace?
It's made everyone pivot. That's the biggest thing we’ve heard & seen from friends and musicians all over. A lot of bands are writing new music, learning new things within it, and making the most of the time while stuck home. A lot of the rock/metal guys have loved working on content with us as we can do a big feeling show with our production. We all know there aren't fans in the building, but it's loud with great production. So it's something to help them and the fans as we wait out the current events.
Was there a learning curve at the onset of the pandemic as it came to adhering to social distancing codes and guidelines and adjusting to the remote/digital world?
There wasn’t a giant learning curve, luckily for us, as we’ve all been doing events for so long that we just follow the CDC guidelines on what’s safe along with all county guidelines. We just can’t shake hands anymore. That is still one of the weirdest things when artists come in. We already had all the tech needed in house and just had to dial it into our new streaming computer, but luckily a lot of our crew here are gamers so it was an easy move.
Any highlights or memories of working with some of these hungry and driven heavy bands like Fever 333 and Animals as Leaders? What stands out?
The Fever 333 thing was pretty wild. It meant so much to us personally and as a business and really put this streaming opportunity into perspective. The entire show was put together in 48 hours between myself, Jason Butler, Jake Allard & Peter Katsis. We just needed to get everything out there on the message that Jason wanted to portray and we did it very well and it really was the starting point of our entire new division of business here.
The biggest stand out moment was with Animals as Leaders. It was done in just one take and they played everything perfectly. It was just so fast and quick from setup to filming with them. It really shows how quickly our content can get from idea to the finish line, which is often much easier than planning a tour or one off show with a live audience etc.
How important is it for MixOne Sound to provide an experience that rivals that of an in person live performance, albeit it in someone's living room? Music fans are crying out for meaningful connections through music, now more than ever.
Our whole focus has been to do a show the best it can be done without fans being there. If the band can feel like it's a real show it comes across as such in the performance and everyone enjoys so much more through every step of the process.