Stories from the Studio

Discussion Panel with JUNO Nominees.

Have you ever wondered what goes into the recording sessions that captured some of Canada’s most iconic songs? Get an inside look, Saturday April 1 from 12 -2PM at LIVE on Elgin in Ottawa, ON as JUNO nominees from the Jack Richardson Producer of the Year and Recording Engineer of the Year categories gather in a discussion panel to share stories from the studio.

Tickets are available now on Yapsody ($25 or $15 for CARAS Academy Delegates & Students) and proceeds benefit MusiCounts.

Panelists include: 

Eric Ratz

Recording Engineer of the Year Nominee: “Afraid of Heights” AFRAID OF HEIGHTS – Billy Talent Warner, “Don’t Tell Me How to Live” SITTIN’ HEAVY – Monster Truck

Jack Richardson Producer of the Year Nominee: The Enforcer” (Co-producer Monster Truck) SITTIN’ HEAVY – Monster Truck, “Fever” DEALBREAKER – Royal Tusk

Eric Ratz is a JUNO Award-winning engineer, producer and mixer with over 20 years of experience. Ratz received his first break in the music business in his early 20s when he was awarded the “Chief Engineer” position at Phase One Studios, in Toronto. Ratz has worked with many of the Canadian music industry’s most successful and influential rock artists/bands including Billy Talent, Big Wreck, Monster Truck, Arkells, Big Sugar, Danko Jones and Cancer Bats. Most recently, Ratz was nominated for the “Jack Richardson Producer of the Year” award and “Recording Engineer of the Year” award at the 2014 and 2015 JUNO Awards for his work on Monster Truck’s Furiosity album (2014), Arkells’ ‘High Noon’ album (2015) and Big Wreck’s Ghosts album (2015). He was awarded “Recording Engineer of the Year” both years.

George Seara

Recording Engineer of the Year Nominee: “Treat You Better”, “Don’t Be A Fool” ILLUMINATE – Shawn Mendes
George Seara is one of Toronto’s leading mixers and recording engineers. A musician and lifelong recording enthusiast, he is known for his great musical ear and astute attention to detail. Seara works in all genres of music and recent clients include Shawn Mendes, Pentatonix, Rihanna, Drake, Holly Cole, Herbie Hancock, Sting and Chantal Kreviazuk.
In 2012, Seara won in the “Recording Engineer of the Year” award at the JUNO Awards, and has been nominated three times in this category.

Howie Beck

Jack Richardson Producer of the Year: “Work” (Co-producer Charlotte Day Wilson) CDW – Charlotte Day Wilson, “High Five” (Co-producer Dan Kurtz) ROYAL BLUES – Dragonette

Initially learning the craft of production by performing on records by others, and self-producing four solo albums, Howie Beck has also been involved in the production of albums by some of Canada’s most talented artists, including Hayden, Jason Collett and Barenaked Ladies, and most recently Dragonettte and Charlotte Day Wilson, amongst others.

Ian D’Sa

Jack Richardson Producer of the Year: “Afraid of Heights”, “Rabbit Down the Hole” AFRAID OF HEIGHTS – Billy Talent

Afraid Of Heights, Billy Talent’s fifth studio album, is musically the band’s boldest statement to date. From the brawny groove of “Ghost Ship of Cannibal Rats” to the boundary-pushing synth-textured “Horses and Chariots,” to the slow-building epic “Rabbit Down the Hole”, the record is intense and pushes the limits of what Billy Talent really is. Guitarist and main songwriter Ian D’Sa says “There’s a lot of things on this record I’ve never tried before. It’s our most experimental record yet.” That experimentation doesn’t mean the band is cutting off its punk roots, though; the album serves to reaffirm rock-‘n’-roll’s power and potential at a time when the genre’s pop-cultural currency has diminished. No track better embodies this than “Louder Than the DJ,” which is not an anti-EDM rant as the title suggests (quips D’Sa: “Some of my friends are DJs!”). Singer Ben Kowalewicz says “Rock music is what changed all of our lives. We need to nurture it and inspire the next generation of kids to pick up guitars, bass and drums—because hopefully the music will affect them the same way it affected us.” Afraid of Heights gives them every reason to take the leap.

Jason Dufour

Recording Engineer of the Year: “Push + Pull”, “Beck + Call” TOUCH – July Talk
Jason Dufour is a Toronto based engineer/mixer who is well on his way to joining ranks with the industry’s leading and in demand mixers. His recent mixing credits span a multitude of genres and includes: July Talk’s highly anticipated sophomore album Touch, along with the bands first number one single ‘Push + Pull’ ; Repartee’s critically acclaimed debut album All Lit Up, featuring their top 40 single ‘Dukes’ and buzzing alternative/pop acts such as Bravestation, Ralph, Blajk, Young Wolf Hatchlings, The Treble, and Saya – who recently signed with Polydor U.K. Dufour is also a well versed recording engineer and his recording credits include work with Coleman Hell, The Tea Party, Tokyo Police Club, Lights, and Protest The Hero’s JUNO Award winning album Volition, among many others.

Matty Green

Recording Engineer of the Year Nominee: “Shine A Light” BANNERS EP – BANNERS, “Armageddon” ARMAGEDDON – Michelle Treacy.
Matty Green began his career as an assistant engineer in studios around Los Angeles before linking up with Mark “Spike” Stent. As Spike’s assistant and engineer he gained many years of knowledge and first hand experience under one of the world’s best. During his apprenticeship, a relationship started with highly respected writer/producer Dave Sitek and Matty eventually became his go-to mixer. He is now emerging as a mixer who can work across genres, having worked on projects with TV On The Radio, Angel Haze and most recently Lady Gaga, Dua Lipa and Hurts, among many others.

Karen Kosowski*

*Special Guest Panelist (Michelle Treacy, Kira Isabella)
Canadian-born producer and songwriter Karen Kosowski recently landed a string of pop and country radio hits including her first American Top 40 with Tryon’s“Somebody To Love Me”. The list goes on with several Canadian radio successes with two pop singles for singer Emma-Lee; the #4 Billboard AC hit “It Won’t Be Christmas”, and the Top 20 AC/Top 30 HotAC hit “Worst Enemy”. Her co-write “Only The Strong Survive” (released by Wax Records recording artist Alee) spent 15 weeks on the Billboard Top 40 Canadian Country chart. She co-wrote/ co-produced the current pop hit “Colours” for Sony Music artist Michelle Treacy, which is currently climbing the Canadian Mainstream Pop and HotAC charts. She wrote and produced the music for the 2015 Pan Am Games medal ceremonies, and she has numerous tv/film placements on television networks such as HBO Canada, CBS, FX Network, Lifetime Network, TLC, YTV, MuchMusic, NickTeen, Space, and the CW, and in feature films like the award-winning thriller “The Scarehouse” and Wangofilms’ action movie “88” (starring Christopher Lloyd) – for which she was nominated in the category of Achievement in Music – Best Original Song in the 2016 Canadian Screen Awards. She received a nomination for Producer of the Year in the NOW Magazine Best of Toronto 2015. She is currently splitting her time between her studios in Nashville and Toronto working on a selection of country and pop projects, including a who’s who of Canadian country radio artists including Kira Isabella, Jessica Mitchell, Wes Mack, and Madeline Merlo.

Thank you to our event partnersHHB Communications, Keshet Productions Inc., LIVE on Elgin, Long & McQuade Musical Instruments

For information on obtaining Academy Delegate and Student tickets please contact: [email protected]

Can’t attend? You can catch the panel via live stream here thanks to Keshet Productions Inc.!