Check out the Signature ETY•Heads that use our products. Click on one of the products below to see a complete list of ETY•Heads who use them.
Engineer & Producer
Al Schmitt is a 21-time Grammy-winning engineer and producer, who has produced pristine, innovative and inspiring recordings, stretching across four decades and into the future. Mentored by the legendary Tom Dowd, Schmitt has worked as an engineer and producer, Gerry Mulligan, Chet Baker, Henry Mancini, Ray Charles, Frank Sinatra, Sam Cooke, Jefferson Airplane, Al Jarreau, Steely Dan, George Benson, Natalie Cole, Diana Krall, Jackson Browne and Neil Young and many more.
"I like the Music-Pro 9-15's, but my wife keeps borrowing them..."
Senior Front of House Engineer - B.B. King Blues Club & Grill
Alex Valenti has been a professional musician and sound engineer in NYC for the last 25 years. He has mixed front of house and monitors at B.B. King's for the last six years for locals and artists such as Patti Labelle, Paul Simon, Isaac Hayes, George Clinton, Bootsie Collins, Ronnie Montrose, Leslie West and Teddy Riley. He is also the bass player and producer of reggae band Skadanks, and has toured with such acts as Queen Latifah, Super Cat, JR Reid and Rita Marley.
"I have been using the Music-Pro 915 earplugs both while working at my venue and playing bass in my band and love them. The frequency response is great. I can hear every instrument, and speech is clear and intelligible even at low levels. These are a must have for the working musician.
The ER-20's provide maximum hearing protection with a much better frequency response than foam plugs. I love these as my go-to hearing protection!"
Associate Music Director for American Idol
Andy Street is associate music director for American Idol and serves as both coach and auditioner. TV programs for which he's composed are watched in over 100 countries throughout our world. His compositions, arrangements and musical direction have won many major industry awards in England, Europe and the United States. He continued the recording projects begun by the late Joe Raposo featuring the music of Sesame Street for BMG Kids record label. He composed all the music and songs for "Madeline" an animated series which won a Cable Ace Award in 1994 and an Emmy in 2002. Further animation includes many series of "Strawberry Shortcake", and recently "Angelina Ballerina" which airs on PBS. Other work on animated series includes "Hurricanes", "Double Dragon" and "Ultraforce". Andy's collaboration with Nigel Lythgoe consisted of hundreds of television shows during the 1980s and 1990s and continues to this day with incidental music he writes for 'American Idol' and 'So You Think You can Dance'.
"The MusicPro 915's are most useful during prolonged sessions of music played at high volume and I am impressed by the comfort and their clarity of sound in all kinds of music."
Associate Band Director, Naperville Central High School, Naperville, IL
Mr. Estes has been an active teacher, arranger, clinician and adjudicator in the Chicagoland area and various areas in Texas. In addition to teaching full time as an elementary general music teacher, Mr. Estes served as the composer and marching percussion instructor for the Waubonsie Valley High School Drumline. Mr. Estes also serves on the design team as Battery Coordinator and Snare tech for the Open Class Pioneer Indoor independent WGI marching percussion ensemble.
"I am loving the Music•PROs!! The Music•PROs offer two wonderful features that you don't get from a traditional earplug. 1. Audio enhancement and 2. Instant filter adjustability! These features are so convenient for the on-the-go Band Director. It's truly comforting to know that my hearing is being preserved, even enhanced with the Etymotic Music•PROs!"
Guitarist, Producer, Engineer
Drummer, producer and engineer Brent Paschke has written, produced and played on some of the most influential rock and pop records of this generation. Using his unique talent to cross genres and deliver a product that spans the entire musical spectrum, Paschke has worked with everyone from Pharrell, Katy Perry and Gwen Stefani, to Ryan Leslie and Ne-Yo. Paschke is most noted as one of the founding members of the Star Trak/Neptunes signed band Spymob and the guy behind all guitars on all N.E.R.D. In Search Of... Built strongly on the undeniable talent making him one of the strongest guitarist in the game, Brent Paschke's passion and versatility allows him to be an impressive triple threat in the studio - covering writing, producing and playing. Brent currently lives in Los Angeles and works with some of the biggest major label musicians in the industry.
"I love using the MusicPROs to check out music and other bands before our set. Having a professional set of attenuating ear plugs for this purpose is great. Using them when I'm walking around the venue and at times in close proximity to the speakers is a big plus in my book. The MusicPROs have also been great when placing mics on loud guitar cabs in the studio. Through the years, I've found that this is hardest on my ears. With the MusicPROs, I can get into the booth and adjust mics without my ears taking a beating."
Musician and Educator - Missouri Southern State University, Royal Thunder Drum Line, Gateway Indoor, Miami, OK High School
Brian Fronzaglia, Professor of Percussion and Director of Athletic Bands at Missouri Southern State University holds a Bachelor's degree in Music Education from Penn State where he was also awarded the Performer's Recognition Award. He holds a Master's degree in Percussion Performance from Michigan State University and is currently pursuing a Doctorate of Musical Arts in Percussion Performance at the UMKC Conservatory of Music.
Brian, performing on many stages has been seen throughout the United States and Europe. Most recently, Brian has been seen performing throughout Italy and has also been seen performing with the Sunflower Music Festival Orchestra, Kansas City Symphony, Kansas City Ballet, Lyric Opera of Kansas City, Kansas City Symphony Chamber Orchestra, The American Opera Studio, Flint Symphony, Lansing Symphony, Altoona Symphony, Nittany Valley Symphony, Northland Symphony, St. Joseph Symphony, Pennsylvania Centre Chamber Orchestra, National Wind Ensemble and the Detroit Chamber Winds and Strings. Brian, a part-time member of the group Marimba Sol de Chiapas was also a member of the Bluecoats Drum and Bugle Corps. A founding member of the NFL's St. Louis Rams "Battering Rams" drum line, Brian is currently the Director and Arranger for MLB's Kansas City Royals "Royal Thunder Drum Line."
Along with being a clinician for the Yamaha Sounds of Summer camp, Brian has also served on the faculties at Penn State University, the Grumo Music Festival held in Grumo-Appula, Italy and the Flint Institute of Music. He is currently an active adjudicator throughout the Midwest and has been a consultant and arranger for several high schools across the nation. He has been on staff with WGI Independent World Finalist, United Percussion and also the DCI World Finalist, The Glassmen Drum and Bugle Corps. Brian is currently a staff consultant for WGI Finalist, Gateway Indoor Percussion.
Brian is a Yamaha Performing Artist/clinician and is also a performing artist/clinician for SABIAN Cymbals, Remo Drumheads and Innovative Percussion Sticks and Mallets. Brian has given numerous master classes, performances and clinics throughout the United States. As a performer Brian has been active in commissioning and premiering new works for percussion and has been recorded on numerous labels and his compositions are published through Knight Wind Publications, Yamaha Corporation of America and Row-Loff Productions.
"In the course of a week I teach everything from private lessons to marching band, percussion ensemble, indoor drum line in addition to performing on stage. I typically hate using earplugs because you sacrifice the quality of sound with attenuation/earplug use. These earplugs change the entire game. I cannot believe how clear the sound is using the MP-9-15 with the attenuation. I use my earplugs in all musical settings and I cannot even notice they are in.... simply amazing! Bravo to the folks at Etymotic for their commitment to health and well-being within the arts and for their superior quality products. A must have for every musician!"
Educator/Musician/Adjudicator - Morehead State University Percussion, Lexington Philharmonic Orchestra, WGI Percussion Judge
Dr. Brian S. Mason, Associate Professor of Percussion at Morehead State University, is a highly respected innovator of the contemporary marching percussion ensemble. His career in the DCI activity spanned more than two decades, claiming numerous awards and honors with the Cavaliers, Phantom Regiment, and the Santa Clara Vanguard. In high demand as a clinician, performer, and adjudicator, he has appeared throughout the United States, Asia, Europe, Canada, and Mexico, and his compositions have been performed around the world.
Currently, Brian coordinates the percussion studies program at Morehead State University in Morehead, KY and also directs the award-winning Marching Percussion Ensemble, featured on VicFirth.com in a web-based instructional video series, Marching Percussion 101. Off-campus, he is a member of the Percussive Arts Society Board of Directors, is president of the KY Chapter of the Percussive Arts Society, is a contract section player with the Lexington Philharmonic Orchestra, and appears as a guest artist with high school and university percussion ensembles across the US.
Brian received his D.M.A. and B.M. as a student of James B. Campbell at the University of Kentucky, and his M.M. at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas as a student of Dr. Dean Gronemeier. He is a member of the Vic Firth Education Committee, the P.A.S. Health and Wellness Committee, and the P.A.S. Marching Percussion Committee. Brian has published articles in Percussive Notes, has been interviewed in Modern Drummer and Band and Orchestra Magazine, and co-authored the 2000 Modern Drummer Readers Poll's "No. 1 Drum Set Method Book," The Commandments of R&B Drumming (Warner Brothers). Brian is a performing artist for Mapex Drums, and Majestic Percussion, Vic Firth sticks and mallets, Zildjian cymbals, Evans drumheads, and Grover Pro Percussion, and his original works are published through Row-Loff Productions, Bachovich Music Publications, and Tap Space Publications.
"Hearing protection for musicians is a must and there is no company that provides a better resource for protecting our ears than Etymotic. The MusicPro 9-15s give me the comfort of hearing things at reasonable volumes with the flip of a switch no matter what environment I am in, whether it be teaching, performing, or judging. Thanks to Etymotic hearing protection I have much more energy at the end of long days in loud environments and I am confident that my career in music will be enhanced through the healthy choice of using these exceptional products."
Charles Morgan is a Grammy nominated, award-winning music educator. He is a Professor of Music, the Music Coordinator, and Director of Bands at Joliet Junior College. Born and raised in New Lenox, Illinois, Charles studied trombone with Jerry E. Lewis, Edward Kleinhammer, and Mark Fisher. He received his Associate of Arts degree from Joliet Junior College in 1991 and his Bachelor of Music emphasis in education from Northern Illinois University in 1993.
He was Director of Bands at Glenwood School for Boys in Glenwood, Illinois; Laraway School in Joliet, Illinois; and Shabbona Middle School in Morris, Illinois. In 1998 he was hired as the Jazz Band Director at Joliet Junior College. He received his Masters of Music Education from VanderCook College of Music in 2003. In 2004 he was selected for the bands and brass position at Joliet Junior College.
His teaching duties at Joliet Junior College include applied brass, music fundamentals, and conducting. He conducts the 90-member JJC Community Band. Charles has served as an adjudicator throughout the state at many junior and senior high school music festivals. In 2010 Joliet Junior College honored him with the Distinguished Alumni Achievement Award. Charles is also a two time GRAMMY Music Educator Award Quarterfinalist for 2014 and 2015. In 2012 Charleswas selected and continues to serve as the Music Education editor for The College Music Society's online Symposium.
As a performer he has played with many artists including, Tito Puente, Tom Scott, Marvin Stamm, Denis DiBlasio, Pete Christlieb, Clark Terry, and Jim Pugh while he was a member of the Northern Illinois University Jazz Ensemble. Professionally he has shared the stage with Gary Puckett and the Union Gap, The Grass Roots, Tommy James and the Shondells, Peter Noone and Herman's Hermits, The High Society Orchestra, The Buddy Rich Big Band, and has been a member of The Buckinghams since 1998. With The Buckinghams he has appeared on Good Morning America, NBC Concerts at Noon, WGN; recorded a special for PBS "60's Pop Rock Reunion" released on CD/DVD by Time Life; and performed at both the 55th and 56th Presidential Inaugurations in Washington D.C. He can also be heard on their recordings "Yesterday, Today," "Live and Well," "Standing Room Only," "Reaching Back," "The Joy of Christmas," their CD/DVD "Up Close," and most recently he appeared on the WTTW special concert series "Cornerstones of Rock", which is currently airing nationally and just released on CD/DVD.
"I cannot say enough about how great Etymotic products are. From the podium to the stage, I have not found a better product for hearing protection. My Music-PRO's go with me everywhere. The quality of sound is something you have to try to believe."
Band Director, Plainfield Middle School, Naperville, IL
Mr. Vanderwall is in his first year as the director of bands at John F. Kennedy Middle School. Mr. Vanderwall maintains an active role in the music education community as a percussionist and music technology enthusiast. He has served as percussion staff for the annual IMEA All-State Honor Band percussion section as well as a district level audition judge. He has also been a clinician at the VanderCook College of Music Day of Percussion, and is a published composer under Drop6 Media, Inc. of Denton, TX. Mr. Vanderwall regularly works with a number of high school marching percussion groups and has experience working with WGI Marching Percussion Ensembles as well.
"Etymotic's Music•PRO hearing protection has been amazing after only one day's use. I can feel the difference between the 9 dB and 15 dB reduction, and I love the 6 dB boost while in 9 dB mode. As an educator, I can still hear intonation and balance while blend is more apparent than before. It even helps me hear questions from my most soft-spoken students!"
Principal Trombone, National Symphony Orchestra
A native of Colorado, Craig Mulcahy joined the National Symphony Orchestra trombone section in 2006. Prior to this appointment, he held the position of Principal Trombone of the Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra for seven years. During his training at the Juilliard School in 1998, he won the first annual Zellmer-Minnesota Orchestra Trombone Competition. He also holds a bachelor's degree from the University of Northern Colorado.
"With Etymotic's new earplugs, the ability to listen to my colleagues to create a high quality musical environment no longer has to compromised. They've taken the fear out of sitting in front of a loud crash cymbal or trumpet section."
"Love the MusicPRO from Etymotic. Nothing like protecting the ears and actually hearing better. These things are cool!"
Concert Promoter - JAM Productions LTD
"I probably spend over 100 nights a year in small clubs and theaters listening to loud music. Hearing protection is extremely important to me. The Music•Pro 9-15 has been amazing. It allows me to hear music naturally, but also to have a conversation with someone without having to remove the earplugs or have someone scream in my ear. They're by far the best earplugs I've ever used."
Born in Iowa and raised in a musical family, Dick Oatts was introduced to the saxophone by his father Jack Oatts, a respected jazz educator and saxophonist. After high school, Dick attended Drake University and in 1972 began his professional career in Minneapolis/St. Paul.
In 1977, he moved to New York City and became a member of the Thad Jones/Mel Lewis Orchestra. Since then he has recorded and toured with Red Rodney, Eddie Gomez, Vic Juric, Bob Brookmeyer, Mel Lewis, Dom Salvador, Jerry Bergonzi, Flim & the BB's, Fred Hersch, Dave Berkman, Soren Moller, Terell Stafford, Jon Faddis, Lalo Schiffrin, and Ray Mantilla.
His big band and larger group experience includes performances with the Vanguard Jazz Orchestra, Mel Lewis, Carnegie Hall Jazz Band, Lester Bowie, Joe Lovano, Sam Jones-Tom Harrell, Paquito D'Rivera, Jim McNeely, Tito Puente, Kenny Wheeler, and Gunther Schuller. Oatts has also been featured with the Stockholm Jazz Orchestra, Danish Radio Big Band, Norboton Jazz Orchestra, Metropole Orchestra, and the UMO Big Band in Helsinki. He has accompanied such vocalists as Joe Williams, Sarah Vaughn, Ella Fitzgerald, Neene Freelon, Mel Torme, and Milton Nascimento. He has recorded solos for pop artists Luther Vandross, James Taylor, and Everything But the Girl.
"I have been playing saxophone for most of my life, and have tried numerous earplugs. They all seem to alter or buffer the sound. The MusicPRO earplugs were not only incredibly comfortable but the sound heard is crystal clear. I would recommend them to any musician! It's never too early to protect your hearing."
From the Rod Stewart Band, both his platinum award winning recordings and touring band, to the critically acclaimed MTV "Unplugged And Seated" release with Ronnie Wood of the Rolling Stones, Don is an accomplished Multi-Instrumentalist.
The list of instruments he plays is long and varied; Violin, Mandolin, all sorts of Electric, Acoustic and Slide Guitars, Bass, Viola, Octave Mandolin, Harmonica, Banjo, Bouzouki and 5 String Viola These are his main instruments. There are more, but why go on?
Born in London England, Don grew up near the foot of the Appalachian mountains in Easton, Pennsylvania. He began playing Fiddle, Mandolin and Guitar at the bluegrass festivals all around the state. After moving to the town of State College he began playing gigs with "Hey Pedro" and "DOA" while in school at Penn State University.
After his "Schooling" in Pennsylvania Don moved to Los Angeles to attend Musicians Institute and pursue his music. While studying Guitar Don became a Recording Engineer at MI's newly built recording studios, as well as the first call Live Sound Engineer for the many seminars and shows offered as part of the curriculum. Don did sound for Stevie Vai, Robbin Ford, Steve Morse, Joe Pass, Jeff Berlin, Tommy Tedesco just to name a few.
As one of the original founding members of the resurgence of Acoustic Music in LA in the late 80's, Don landed a recording session playing with the Legendary Rod Stewart This pairing led to Three world tours, Two Gold and One Platinum record.
After working with Rod Stewart for almost five years,Don released his first CD.
SwampRockBlues ; A collection of Slide Guitar based music. Inspired by the tradition of the Delta Blues; Organic, Acoustic, and Passionate. These steamy songs resonate with the beautiful yet haunting sounds of the deep South.
SwampFunkBlues ; is Dons second set of recordings, Electric Funk and Acoustic POP... covering a wide range of style and emotion . This time with his band "WaterDawgs", Don sings and Rocks The Electric and Acoustic Guitars, Violin, Mandolin, Lap Steel and Harmonica ... as well as a few choice Bass lines.
Don will soon be touring in support of this release. In the mean time he will be playing local shows around the Los Angeles area.
Don also plays with the Black Shamrocks, a traditional Irish Rock band and The Makepeace Brothers an acoustic rock band
"I have a collection of earplugs and have always been searching for the perfect set. Now I've found it. The clarity with the ETY•Plugs (ER-20's) is the best I've heard!"
Jacob Powell's musical journey began in Lawrenceburg, TN, a sleepy little town south of Nashville where he grew up listening to the Allman Brothers, George Jones and George Strait. He attended Middle Tennessee State University where he majored in music business. It was then at a bar in his hometown where he met songwriter/producer Ben Daniel. He invited Powell to cowrite with Brandon Kinney and himself and a new creative partnership was born. When executives at Sony/ATV heard the songs emerging from those sessions, Powell landed a contract with the publishing giant. Powell's debut disc showcases the depth and breadth of his artistry. He sings country music with an authority and authenticity that come from both God-given talent and hard-earned experience.
"I go to a ton of live shows and it's been really nice to have the MusicPRO's on hand. They're designed so that I can hear every lyric and guitar lick. I'm so impressed and will never leave home without them!"
Musician, Music Industry Professional, Educator - Ghostly International & Quite Scientific Records
Jeremy Peters is the Director of Creative and Business Affairs for Ghostly Songs. Since joining Ghostly in 2003 he's risen thru the ranks from intern to directing the operations of the group's publishing, copyright administration, master licensing, original composition, and music supervision activities. Jeremy has worked on projects with brands such as Nike, Victoria's Secret, FIJI Water, HUMMER, Motorola, Ford, Chevy, and Sprint/Nextel as well as numerous Television, Video Game, and Film projects.
In his non-existant spare time, he is the co-founder of an indie imprint, Quite Scientific Records, is part of the group that organizes 826Michigan's Mittenfest, and is a communications and new media consultant and organizer for progressive and center-left political campaigns. He currently serves on the Board of Directors of 826michigan, as Co-Chair of the American Association of Independent Music's Licensing and Publishing Committee, Co-Chair of the Ann Arbor Film Festival's Local Advisory Board, and on the Community Advisory Committee for The Neutral Zone's Youth Owned Enterprises.
He's been a resident of Washtenaw County for the past eleven years and graduated from the University of Michgan with a BA in Political Science and Music, and has recorded and/or performed with The University of Michigan Men's Glee Club (on a double Platinum record, to boot!), The Friars, Western Michigan University's Gold Company II, the University Musical Society's Choral Union (with the Detroit and Ann Arbor Symphony Orchestras), the Lakeshore Chamber Singers, the Choir of Christ Church, Grosse Pointe, Chris Bathgate, Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr., The Silent Years, Matt Jones, Fred Thomas, Frontier Ruckus and others.
"I work in the music industry and hearing is part of my bread and butter -- as such, I need to protect what is bringing me my livelihood. I've used many of Etymotic's products over the past few years (ETY•Plugs, Musician's Plugs, and now these...), and swear by them. It is cool to enjoy music, but not cool to go deaf.
The fidelity is amazing, especially with the Music•Pro series -- and to boot, they work great to dull the ambient noise on a plane ride. Music sounds crystal clear, equally balanced, and still shimmers, but just at levels safe for consumption by your ears.
I highly, highly suggest you invest in the long term health of your ears, do yourself a favor, and get yourself a pair of Music•Pro earplugs. You won't regret it."
Singer-songwriter and producer Jimmy Robbins signed to Universal Motown Records in 2007. He began work on a full-length album and toured the country between 2007-2009. During the summer of 2009, Jimmy toured on Radio Disney's dTour before joining Mitchel Musso's tour. Jimmy's major label album See Through Secrets was then digitally released on September 8, 2009, and he officially began cowriting and producing with and for other artists in 2010, including for Blake Shelton, Florida Georgia Line, Keith Urban, Miranda Lambert, Thompson Square, and Sara Evans.
"I thought they were really great! A lot more comfortable than the kind I've used on the road for years and they did their job really well!"
Clarinetist, Chicago Symphony Orchestra
The first Asian musician ever appointed to the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, as well as the longest-serving clarinetist in CSO history, John Bruce Yeh joined the CSO in June of 1977, having been appointed solo bass clarinet of the Orchestra at the age of 19 by Sir Georg Solti. Recently, he has performed as guest principal clarinet of the Philadelphia Orchestra as well as of the Seoul Philharmonic in Korea. A prize winner at both the 1982 Munich International Music Competition and the 1985 Naumburg Clarinet Competition in New York, Yeh continues to solo with orchestras around the globe. Passionately committed to music education, Yeh has also served for 26 years on the faculty of DePaul University's School of Music, and he joined the faculty at Roosevelt University's Chicago College for the Performing Arts in 2004.
"Your timing is impeccable, as are your (MusicPro 915) earplugs. They arrived today, just in time to protect me from the loudest piece (possibly) ever written, Respighi's Feste Romane, which we rehearsed with Maestro Muti today. These plugs are just the ticket, allowing me to hear everything, including the Maestro's instructions, while damping the onslaught of the brass band!"
Production Manager, Audio & Front of House Engineer - B.B. King Blues Club and Grill
Karl Schwarz is production manager for the B.B. King Blues Club and Grill in New York City. He is an audio engineer, front of house engineer and tour manager, as well as guitar technician and monitor engineer.
"The 15db setting on the Music•Pro 915's seems best for concert situations, more consistent with mixing music, and has a sharp reference to what the music and the room are doing. The 9db setting is better for street and subway environments. They amp quiet conversation, but pad the louder sounds of the train engines, and horns, making them much less abrasive."
English Horn Player, National Symphony Orchestra
Kathryn Meany Wilson joined the National Symphony Orchestra in 1997 as solo English horn player and oboist. Previously she was a member of the Tulsa Philharmonic in 1996, the New World Symphony in 1995, and the Colorado Symphony in 1994. She has also performed with the Lake Superior Chamber Orchestra and the New York Philharmonic. Originally from Minnesota, Ms. Meany Wilson received her bachelor's degree from Oberlin Conservatory and her master's degree in performance and literature from the Eastman School of Music. Upon graduation in 1994, she was awarded the prestigious performer's certificate.
"In the past, I had to remove and replace my earplugs repeatedly during concerts and rehearsals so that I could hear myself and my colleagues during soft passages and still protect my ears during loud sections. The MusicPro 9-15's have allowed me to significantly minimize the number of times that I need to do that. They've helped me to reduce the stress associated with playing in such a potentially loud environment and they've increased my enjoyment of my job."
Contra Bassoonist, Montreal Symphony
Michael Sundell was appointed to the contrabassoon position with the Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal in 2011. Prior to coming to Montreal, Michael was a member of the Colorado Symphony. He has also held positions with the Milwaukee Symphony, Tulsa Philharmonic, and Virginia Symphony. A dedicated teacher, as well as performer, Michael always enjoys sharing his love of music with new generations of music students.
"Wow! The (Music•Pro 915s) are great! I especially like the 9 dB setting. I was able to hear ensemble and intonation in soft passages, while I never felt the pain of loud brass entrances right behind me. The 6dB gain effect is very helpful because it seems to perfectly compensate for having the plugs in the first place. (With the exception of the slight underwater" effect just from having them in your ears. I think the slight amplification helps with this though.) Definitely the best earplug I've ever tried by far."
Freelance Drummer - Musician, Businessman
I am originally from New Orleans but my family moved to Miami when I was 8 years old. When I was in high school we moved again, this time to the Atlanta area. I was active in my high school band program, gaining valuable experience in marching, concert, and jazz bands. After graduating in 1973, I went to the University of North Texas, noted for its jazz education program, and in 1975 I attended the University of Miami, another notable music school.
My professional career began during my senior year in high school when I was hired to work in a band at Six Flags Over Georgia. Later I began playing club dates in the hotels along Miami Beach. Eventually I went on the road with the Glenn Miller Orchestra, traveling in a bus doing one-nighters across America and Canada. I moved to Los Angeles in 1981 and began freelancing. There I gained experience in a wide variety of live and studio settings and was fortunate to work with some well-known West Coast musicians.
While living in LA I studied with some wonderful drummers including Joe Porcaro, father of rock and studio drummer Jeff Porcaro, Roy Burns, founder of Aquarian Drum Heads, and funk pioneer David Garibaldi from Tower of Power . My real mentor, however, is the great jazz drummer Jeff Hamilton. I spent many years studying and hanging with him and he still kills me every time I hear him play.
I left L.A. in 1989 to serve as an artist in residence for the jazz studies program at Saint Francis Xavier University's school of music in Nova Scotia, Canada. After completing the term, I decided to move to Atlanta, settling there in 1990.
I was offered a position as the house drummer for the Ritz Carlton Hotel playing with ensembles ranging from jazz trios to big bands, and it turned into a nine-year stay. I played the popular Ritz Carlton Big Band Christmas concerts at Spivey Hall for many years. I was part of several July 4th concerts from Lenox Square aired on local TV featuring a 90-piece orchestra and chorus with a live audience of 250,000 people.
In 2000, I left the gig at the Ritz to freelance and teach. Since then I've been involved in theatrical productions at the Canton Theatre, Libby's Cabaret, and the award winning Alliance Theater revival of Jelly's Last Jam. I still love big bands and have worked with Larry Elgart, The Knoxville Jazz Orchestra, the Atlanta Pops Orchestra, and the Birmingham Symphony Orchestra. I also played a concert recreating the Miles Davis Birth of the Cool album featuring trumpeter Marvin Stamm at Washington and Lee University in Lexington, Virginia. Presently I enjoy working with a lot of different artists in a variety of settings.
In 2004 I started a company called Cymbal Masters, LLC with a team including Bill Norman and Jeff Hamilton. We began as the North American distribution company for Bosphorus Cymbals. Since then we've added Stanton Moore as a partner and ended our relationship with Bosphorus. Cymbal Masters now owns, markets and distributes Crescent Cymbals.
I have been playing and teaching drums for more than thirty years and now have added running a cymbal company to the list. I consider myself very fortunate to be doing what I love to do.
"Hearing protection is very important to me because I make my living either as a drummer or owner of a cymbal company. I jut got a pair of MusicPro 9-15 earplugs. They are the best noise protection earplugs I've ever used. In normal environments I use the 9db setting. With that setting, I can hear everything much clearer through any background noise, knowing that the plugs will also flatten out excessive noise for protection. When I play the drums, I use the 15db setting. It allows all sound to pass through up until it reaches dangerous levels, then shuts it all down evenly for protection."
Few drummers will ever enjoy a career with such success and diversity as Mike Baird. The LA-based drummer was well on his way to fame when he kicked off his recording career in 1973. Armed with talent, technique, the ability to read music, and a dynamic style that centered on 'the groove', Mike quickly made a mark for himself as a first-call studio player. Everyone wanted him: Journey, the Moody Blues, Bob Dylan, Celine Dion, Al Green, Larry Carlton, Kenny Loggins, Hall & Oates, Michael Jackson, George Benson, Cher, Three Dog Night, Burt Bacharach, Randy Bachman, Stevie Wonder, Michael McDonald, David Foster, Joe Cocker, Rod Stewart, Tina Turner, Frank Sinatra and many others.
"For me, hearing protection is paramount. In one word, the Music•Pro 9-15's are 'UNBELIEVABLE!' They allow me to have a clear conversation while drumming, and my ears do not experience ringing or fatigue at the end of a gig. I wish I had this technology years ago."
CEO - Rhythm X, Inc.
Mike Scott is a clinician, consultant, and the CEO of Rhythm X, Inc., a non-profit music education company in Dayton, Ohio. Mike earned his Bachelor's Degree in Music Education from Miami University in Oxford, Ohio in 2012. There he studied percussion and conducting and completed the Farmer School of Business Summer Institute. Before beginning his career as an administrator and teacher, Mike was an active performer in the marching arts. In 2011 Mike was the conductor of the Bluecoats Drum and Bugle Corps of Canton, Ohio and was a performer in Rhythm X's percussion ensemble from 2011-2012. Mike was also a member of the Miami University Marching Band for four years, serving as the drum major during the 2011 and 2012 seasons. In 2013 Mike began work at Rhythm X, Inc. as the Operations Director, managing the business development and logistics of the organization. He was also the Director of Instrumental Music at St. Ursula Academy in Toledo, Ohio. There he taught band, orchestra, and general music in grades 6-12. Prior to the 2015 competitive season, Mike became the first full-time employee at Rhythm X, Inc. as the company's CEO. There he works with the organization's President Tim Fairbanks to develop the future strategy of the company. During the summer months, Mike travels the country with the Bluecoats Drum and Bugle Corps as the group's Tour Administrator. He has also served as the tour manager of The Cadets Drum and Bugle Corps of Allentown, Pennsylvania. Mike proudly endorses Innovative Percussion, Etymotic Research, and Fred J. Miller Inc.
"The ETY•Plugs are the quintessential earplug. My students can get safe and effective hearing protection with an inexpensive yet high-quality earplug. Every musician should have a pair!"
Sound Engineer - BB King Blues Club (Manhattan); Saint Vitus (Brooklyn)
Nick has spent the last 10 years learning about and working with live sound in venues all around New York. At his home base, Saint Vitus, in Brooklyn, he has mixed for heavy metal bands YOB, Inquisition, Helstar, The Descendents, among others. More recently he has worked with artists such as Cyndi Lauper, Jay-Z, The Rolling Stones, and RUSH.
"I've been using the MusicPro 915's on an almost nightly basis at my venue, and I love them. They finally save my ears and have been an incredibly welcome addition to my audio toolbox!"
Rich Gastwirt is one of the most sought after concert photographers. His images have appeared on a variety of music websites as well as in print publications such as Rolling Stone, Billboard, the New York Times, and the Boston Globe. He is the only photographer to have twice been recognized with Billboard Magazine's coveted People's Choice Award in their Ultimate Music Moment Contest (2009, 2010) and he is the official photographer of the Newport Folk Festival, Gathering of the Vibes Festival, and Life is Good Festival. He often covers several concerts per week in the Boston area and his work can be seen at www.stageshooter.com.
"I love that (the Music•Pro 9-15 high-fidelity earplugs) almost disappear when not listening to music - I enjoy the airy" nature of not having sound blocked. This is very useful backstage when roadies are moving stuff around. Being able to hear a case that is about to be rolled into the back of your heels is important! The automatic gain control is very fast. Music with significant dynamics didn't sound compressed or weird. I tried them at the FOH mixing desk and they sounded very nice and transparent from back there. Love the case. Very protective in my pocket...""
Rich Redmond is an influential touring/recording drummer/percussionist. His versatile, dynamic, and rock solid drumming is the sound behind many of today's top talents. Rich has toured/recorded/performed with: Jason Aldean, Ludacris, Kelly Clarkson, Bryan Adams, Joe Perry, Jewel, Miranda Lambert and many others. As the drumming powerhouse behind Grammy nominated mega star Jason Aldean, Rich has recorded 10 #1 singles with over 7 million albums sold and over 13 million single downloads. As a high-energy live showman, Rich plays sold out shows of 25-30,000 fans nightly in amphitheaters, arenas and stadiums across North America. Rich was voted "Best Country Drummer" and "Best Clinician" by Modern Drummer Magazine in 2010 and "Best Country Drummer" by Drum! Magazine in 2011.
"The Music•Pro 9-15 electronic earplugs are the smartest in the industry. With a flip of a switch, they not only protect your hearing, but also filters sound in an extremely balanced way. A great tool!"
Keyboards, Poi Dog Pondering
Keyboardist Rick Gehrenbeck, aka Mr Egg Germ quickly made his way around the Chicago live scene in the '90s with his unique blend of old-school sounds and jazz/funk stylings, combined with the modern sensibilities of an electronic music producer. This has enabled him to perform throughout the world with legends like Sugar Blue, Bootsy Collins, Gladys Knight, Charlie Wilson, Poi Dog Pondering, Mr ALI, Peven Everett, and the J Davis Trio. He recently co-founded The Booty Movement Coalition with long-time collaborator and jazz grammy nominee, vocalist Typhanie Monique. As Mr Egg Germ, Rick combines his past and present into a melange best described as organic.funk.technology (think deep house, funky down tempo, and soulful steppers). He has released original tracks on Loveslap, ILI, D'lectable, Bass X, Esntion, Fourplay, and LAY. In addition, Rick has produced/performed on countless remixes (Patricia Barber, Jesse De La Pena, Uncle Milty, DJ Dealer, Gene Farris, Anthony Nicholson), composed and produced commercial music (McDonald's, Walter E. Smithe), and composed and produced a film soundtrack.
"I've used custom molded musician's plugs for years, but always feared losing the tiny filters when inserting and removing (I actually did lose them a couple times). With the Music•PRO's, I just leave them in and switch from 15db top 9db setting. Being able to switch that setting helps while on stage too; if I have a problem with my gear, I can flip to 9db setting and never be completely exposed to full stage volume. Universal tips are comfortable and no more putting the 'left' plug in the 'right' ear. The reduction is smooth and musical. Fast enough to pick up a nasty monitor feedback spike with no noticeable recovery time."
Principal Bassoon - National Symphony Orchestra
Sue Heineman has been Principal Bassoonist of the National Symphony Orchestra since September 2000. Prior to joining the NSO, she held positions with the New Haven, Memphis, New Mexico, and New Zealand Symphony Orchestras. She has appeared as soloist with the NSO on numerous occasions, as well as with the Kennedy Center Chamber Players, comprised of principal players from the NSO. Ms. Heineman has performed as guest Principal Bassoonist of the Los Angeles Philharmonic and is a frequent soloist at conferences of the International Double Reed Society. A former member of the Aspen Wind Quintet, she has performed with the American Chamber Players, Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival, Santa Fe Opera, and Metropolitan Opera. As a student she participated in festivals at Tanglewood, Banff, National Repertory Orchestra, and Los Angeles Philharmonic Institute.
Originally from Philadelphia, Ms. Heineman holds a Bachelor of Music degree from Eastman and a Master's degree from Juilliard. She also completed a Bachelor of Arts degree at the University of Rochester, graduating summa cum laude with Phi Beta Kappa honors, and was the recipient of a Fulbright Scholarship to Salzburg. Her teachers include Shirley Curtiss, David Van Hoesen, Milan Turkovic, Judith LeClair, and Stephen Maxym. A frequent guest clinician at conservatories and festivals throughout the US and Canada, Ms. Heineman is on the faculty of the University of Maryland School of Music.
"Ever since my first professional job when the principal trumpet shouted Sue! Duck!!!" before his solos I've been using earplugs in various forms. The most frustrating part is the disconnect from your aural surroundings, and the Music•Pro 9-15 are the best solution I've found. Particularly in rehearsal they allow me to stay connected with the instructions of the conductor without constantly scrambling to get plugs in and out. In certain situations they actually make it easier to hear my colleagues across the stage. The custom fit ear molds are by far the most comfortable earplug I've used.""
Musician , Recording Engineer - Poi Dog Pondering
I've been in and out of bands for the last 25 or so years. Currently, I play guitar with Poi Dog Pondering. I also record and mix music. Playing and making music is an important part of my life.
"Critical listening is one of the more important aspects of recording and mixing music so protecting the hearing I have left is very important to me. I have a pair of the Music Pro electronic plugs and I use them all the time. I wear them during gigs and rehearsals of course but I also rely on them during my daily life. People don't realize how loud Chicago is - particularly downtown Chicago. I wear my plugs whenever I commute on the train or walk through busy downtown intersections. I love the fact that they don't compromise intelligibility during conversations too.
Director of Artist and Entertainment Relations for Taylor Guitars
Tim Godwin is Director of Artist and Entertainment Relations for Taylor Guitars. He was formerly Artist Relations manager for Line 6. Tim's work has included establishing relationships and partnerships with many artists including Zac Brown, Jason Mraz, The Edge of U2, James Taylor, Lenny Kravitz, and Dave Mustaine of Megadeth.
Prior to working for Taylor and Line 6 world, he toured the world as a guitarist with notable acts including Air Supply and Laura Brannigan. He has also accompanied GRAMMY award winning country star Shelby Lynne during an appearance on The Jay Leno show and performed as a member of the house band on Fox's "Sunday Comics." Tim co-founded the band Farmer with music producer Marshall Altman, and their collaboration led to a publishing deal with EMI and a record deal with Aware Records, current home to multi-platinum artists John Mayer, Five For Fighting, and Train. Recently, he composed music for the film short "Last 3 Minutes" directed by Po Chan and filmed by Shane Hurlbut, ASC Director of Photography for "Terminator Salvation."
"I love going to concerts, and protecting my hearing has always been very important to me. But, I hated stuffing foam earplugs in my ear and having the sound be muffled, so in the past, I opted to suffer the damage regardless of sound level - not very smart! Then, I tried the MusicPRO•915's and fell in love with them! Now not only am I saving my hearing, but I can hear the full dynamic range of sound. They also work great when taking your 13 year old daughter to a concert of her choice - they mute all of the high pitched screaming!"
Timeflies started in 2010, and after releasing only singles, they released their debut album, The Scotch Tape in 2011. They also started Timeflies Tuesday - a YouTube series in which they are able to stay connected with fans by releasing remixes, performing live covers, and freestyling over original beats. In April 2014, they debuted their latest album, After Hours.
Cal started singing and freestyling in high school, and while in college, joined a band called The Ride. This blues, funk and hip-hop band was when Cal later teamed up with The Ride's drummer, Rez, to form Timeflies in October 2010. Cal's musical influences include Robert Johnson, Janis Joplin, Muddy Waters, and his favorite, Big L. Cal's biggest strength, and weakness, is his love for scotch.
Rez got an early start in production after building a studio in his basement for multiple high school bands. Rez works mostly in Pro Tools and Ableton Live, and plays mainly drums, guitar, and piano. Rez spent a few years DJing in college, double majoring in music and philosophy. In regards to his Timeflies production, Rez cites Porter Robinson, Benny Blanco, Pretty Lights, and JR Rotem as major influences. He is also a serious Green Lantern fan.
"The ease of mobility coupled with the quality of this product make it a must have for anyone who frequents themselves in extreme decibel atmospheres."
George Lewis Jr., also known as Twin Shadow, is an American new-wave synthpop musician. In 2000, he started the band Mad Man Films, but in 2006 left and moved to Brooklyn, NY where he later recorded his 2010 album Forget and 2012 album Confess. He was named Band of the Week in 2012 by Rolling Stone and in the same year, was the voice of the host on Grand Theft Auto V's "Radio Mirror Park." He's been featured as a performer at Coachella, Pitchfork Music Festival, Bonnaroo, and supported Florence and the Machine on their 2011 tour.
"I'm the type of musician who plays loud music and hates, hates, hates using earplugs. I find that the high end and fullness I lose with store earplugs distracts me from connecting with the music. But, I want to be making music for a long time. The MusicPro's do what I've always wanted an earplug to do, which is keep the sonic picture intact and protect my ears when things get sketchy."
Bassist Victor Wooten began his musical career at age three when his brother Regi taught him to play bass. He made his stage debut at five, performing with his four older brothers in the Wootens, playing songs by R&B mainstays like James Brown, Sly & the Family Stone, War, and Curtis Mayfield. After opening for acts like Mayfield and War, the Wootens recorded an album in 1985. By 1988, he moved to Nashville to join a rock band, and the following year met Bla Fleck, the banjo player for New Grass Revival. As the Flecktones, the group earned numerous accolades, including four Grammy nominations and a number one album on the jazz charts.
Along with solo albums like 1996's A Show of Hands and the following year's What Did He Say?, Wooten contributed to albums by friends David Grier, Paul Brady, and Branford Marsalis. His third solo album, Yin-Yang, which featured appearances by Fleck, Bootsy Collins, and the Wooten Brothers, was released in 1999. Released in 2001 Live in America, a double-disc package, documented four years on the road. After tours with the Flecktones and a 2001 release/tour with the group Bass Extremes, Wooten returned to his solo career in 2005 with the album Soul Circus. Released in 2008, Palmystery included turns by violinist Eric Silver and harmonica player Howard Levy. In 2011, Wooten formed his own record label, Vix Records.
"I wasn't smart enough (or educated enough) to wear earplugs growing up and I have a constant ringing in my ears as a result. The MusicPro's are ingenious and deal with a VERY important issue."