This is: Mike Gonsolin
This is: Mike Gonsolin
This is Mike Gonsolin, prominent music producer, CEO & owner of Trend Def Studios. We talked about his career, his favourite collaborations, our beatmaking tools Regroover & Beatformer & and much more.
Q: Tell us a bit about yourself
I'm Mike Gonsolin, I'm here with Accusonus to talk about a couple of their plugins and what I do here at Trend Def Studios. I've been into making music my whole life, I played in bands growing up, I was in a signed boy band with Tyrese the actor, when I first came to LA a few years back. Shortly after that, I got into producing, making beats, and kind of found my niche, my passion. I don't like to go on tour or leave home. And producing and running my own studio here in LA has kind of catered to that spoiled lifestyle.
Q: What was your breakthrough moment?
I don't know I can really pinpoint down to a breakthrough moment, I could definitely pinpoint to a breakthrough artist, and I would have to give that to Famous Dex. I've been working with him a long time, kinda since he first came to LA, and he's just always shown me love. He always goes the extra mile and a half to be sure that everyone he works with, no matter how big or small they are, gets the credit that they deserve, not just with me, but with everyone he works with. He's definitely got a heart of gold, and everyone who has worked with him knows that about him.
Q: Snoop Dogg, French Montana, Limp Bizkit & the list goes on. Favorite collaboration?
As far as favorite collaborators, that title would definitely have to go to, again, Famous Dex. He's awesome to work with, insanely talented, and although I've worked with a lot of people in the industry, I really enjoy working with the guy, and he, again, always makes sure that people get the credit that they deserve. And that just goes such a long ways with me. I probably did the majority of his album here, and I will continue to work with him as my career goes on and his done, and he's just got the best still I had for him.
Q: What makes your production style uniquely yours?
I might be stating the obvious, but style, talent. A lot of people go to school for music in some way or another, and I feel that's good. There is just a couple things you can't learn in school; style and talent. That's not to downplay the importance of education. I certainly spent my fair share studying new plugins, new DAW softwares. But yeah, I feel like I've always had a very standout style with production, which is one of the best things you can have in this industry, 'cause there is a lot of competition.
Q: How does Regroover help you elevate your production game?
Regroover has helped me a lot in production, primarily in hip-hop. When you're producing, a lot of hip hop producers aren't necessarily the most skilled musicians, for lack of better words, but they have great ideas, they know how to work their way in the DAW and how to bring those ideas to life. So a big part of hip hop production obviously loops. And when you hear a loop, it's not necessarily the whole loop that catches your ear or drags you in, it's a part of it, the kick, the snare, whatever. So let's say you hear a loop, you love the kick, you wanna use that, but in the olden days, you're kind of stuck with the whole loop. So with Regroover, it makes it very easy, very fast, to just extract what you want, what it was that caught your ear about that loop, put it in your beat, scrap the rest if you want, or use two or three things, rearrange them if you want. That's awesome, it's super ergonomic, it's fast, it's easy, I don't feel there was a rivaling product prior to that coming out.
Unmix Your Loops Into Stems
Q: What’s your favourite feature of Beatformer?
God, as far as that goes with plugins, hardware, beginner producer that actually spends money on that stuff and doesn't fuck with cracks, it's honestly like Christmas everyday when you get the emails for new plugins coming out. I'm absolutely addicted to plugins. I buy everything. I don't crack anything at all, and I would say I own everything, because you never know, you never know until you have a plugin in your hands and you're using it, how it could suit your production, how it could suit your mixing.
Some of my favorite plugins that still sit in my arsenal to this day are ... I almost passed on them, I almost didn't get them. I'm like, "Eh, I got something kinda like that," and then I tried it out and I'm like, "Ooh, nevermind, that's kind of a game changer."
So I would always recommend experiment with everything, don't just read the reviews, don't just watch the videos, and think you know ... because a lot of that shit is very media-biased, and you have to get your hands on something. You're not gonna buy a car looking at a video of it, you're gonna wanna get behind it, drive it, and test it out. So see how it works for you.
Q: Any advice for young producers?
I would say the most key piece of advice I've learned/taught myself over the years is not just know your worth, but defend your worth. We're living in an era where expectations are pretty high on the artist side of producers and mixers, and this whole pay you an exposure, and give me free beats. It's cool to a certain extent, I get the marketing appeal of that, but producers gotta pay the bills. So that kind of stuff only goes so far. I'm a big advocate of everyone at my company, I like to see get paid. That's not possible, I find a way. and I really think producers, more or so in hip hop, have kind of screwed themselves by giving away so much free shit that it's the norm. You tell the rapper, "Hey, I'm gonna need whatever on this beat." And it's big rapper, and they're looking at you like you're crazy. So I would like to see that change, and I think the first step to that is people defending their worth.
And I'm not saying do it in an outlandish way, but if you don't put some value behind your product, who else is?
Q: Future plans?
I'm definitely always working on a lot. At the moment the usual obviously with Trend Def Studios, a lot of production, a lot of mixing, a lot of recording, a lot of artists. A lot of artists! A lot of different albums. Tons of stuff I'm excited about, as far as that goes. But as far as future plans, we have a lot. We're starting to launch the label site of our company, we're signing artists. We've got two that we're excited about, kinda putting in the leg work on that.
And we are also branching out and opening other studios as well. So both cool things, we're super stoked about it, a lot of work, but we never shy away from that.
I wanna give a super big shout out to Accusonus for reaching out to me to do the interview. I've been a huge fan of you guys' stuff for a long time, I'm glad you enjoyed my work prior to us linking up, and I look forward to everything else you have to come for us producers.
Check out Mike’s awesome work :: Website