Triple-threat producer/songwriter/engineer Snipe Young (that's Dr. Snipe Young to you) got his start playing drums at age four. He divided his extracurricular efforts between sport and song and was recognized by leaders in both fields. Young was recruited by the Chicago White Sox at one point, and his salutatorian status brought scholarship offers. Young politely declined both to instead focus on music production.
After a stint in a local music-technology program at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, he decided to go it alone. Young's largely self-taught.
Today, Young can fairly drop names and can show you the signatures on his clients’ checks to back it up. His better-known clients include Sho'nuff Records, Nicki Minaj, Rihanna, Toni Braxton, Lil Jon, Timbaland, and Flo-Rida. Corporate clients include BET, Subway, and General Mills.
Young's the type of guy who gives things his all, and when he committed to PreSonus, he committed in a big way. In Young's studio, you'll find a StudioLive 24.4.2, an AudioBox 1818VSL, a Central Station Plus, and a BlueTube DP V2. Capture and Studio One are installed on his workstation.
Ask Young why, and you'll receive a heaping helping of practical Studio One advice—with a side of metaphor.
“Studio One Pro 2 is a painter's dream. I use it for composition, recording, sound design, and scoring. As a painter, my canvas has to work in all situations I find myself in: commercial, project, pre-production rooms, live recordings, and even on a plane!”
“I've been working with music since I was an early teen, and I pretty much became trapped in the typical DAWs and outboard gear until late 2010. A producer friend of mine showed me this 'too good to be be true' tool called Studio One. Knowing I couldn't compete with him using my old DAW, I purchased Studio One the next day, but I acted as if I was still using my old DAW. I was telling him it could do all these crazy things Studio One can do, and that it was just as easy to crank up and drive—I pretty much shot him down. I never told him I had made the switch to Studio One until 2012!
“What I like most about Studio One Professional 2 is the energy of the engine, meaning it's no task to start an idea and complete it in a smooth workflow!” beams Young. “I also love the fact that Studio One is not just focused on producing vocals. I can sit in front of Studio One and decide at that point what I want to do mastering, composition, mixing, sound design, etc. I feel it was built for all sonic creation and not just for one element of it.
“Groove Quantize is DAWesome, especially how easy it is to use. When trying to lock a bassist and drummer, I simply drag the drum file to the groove window, and it creates the custom groove of the drummer, or vice-versa. I highlight the file I want to quantize and hit 'Q!' Simple and locked!”
Young also takes advantage of Studio One Professional 2's permissive approach to pitching and stretching. “I love the stretching function. I can just hold Alt, move the cursor to the end of the WAV file, and stretch it to the bar I want the file to conform to! The pitch control on the info screen is ridiculous when pitch-matching drums or any sound I want to manipulate. I simply click the file, hit 'I,' and transpose. Again, very simple! Having Melodyne accessible without needing ReWire is great as well, and Explode to Pitches is great for separating multiple drum sounds.
“I keep my sessions neat and easy to ID by using the management-system colors, groups, folders, etc. I make two clicks to determine what tracks are shown and hidden. That's easy but to make it even easier I can save these different views as presets,” Young points out.
“If you are a painter and you paint with the wrong brushes, then you're hurting yourself,” Young muses. “Get Studio One Professional 2 and paint what you hear!”