Grammy-winning prof helps SBCC students record music

Rebekah Khoury

Upcoming bands can take advantage of City College’s sound-recording secret, a professor who can provide a direct link to the music industry while offering students tips and the opportunity to visit or work at his professional recording studio, Santa Barbara Sound Design.

Professor Dominic Camardella, who has received two Grammy Awards nominations, not only teaches Music 120 A and B, courses centered around sound recording and electronic music, but also offers students internships and hands-on training with professional equipment. City College student Josh Collopy has taken advantage these resources.

“Dom is a top- notch musician who has taught me a lot about how to act, and proper etiquette in the studio” Collopy said.

Collopy plays guitar in an experimental progressive rock band, Says the Sun, and is currently taking the course with his fellow band members. The band has been together for a year. The band’s drummer Sean Corcran is presently enrolled in the Work Training course offered through SoMA, which has given Says the Sun the opportunity to work on portions of their EP in Santa Barbara Sound Design’s “Studio B,” Camardella said.

“We achieved a dynamic understanding of how we sound together as a band which has really helped in the making of our CD,” Collopy said of the group’s recording experience.

The group utilized Camardella’s knowledge of sound recording and the music industry to create a professional sound for their album.

“There were parts we thought sounded good and Dom agreed, but thought they could be even better,” Collopy said. “We trusted his judgment because he is so experienced.”

Collopy said that the most frustrating part of the recording process is getting the tracks to sound perfect and having all band members agree on the final product.

“People don’t see the intense [recording] process when they purchase the CD,” Collopy said. “It can go from sounding horrible to sounding beautiful- and to do that takes a lot of time and effort.”

Camardella eased the stress of recording. Collopy said that having connections to someone like Camardella at this point in their career is a “huge help because knowing people in the music profession increases your chances of succeeding.”

Recording at Camardella’s Santa Barbara Sound Design has a base rate of $1,250 per day plus engineering costs, but he tries to make the studio as affordable as possible when the band has a budget for recording, Camardella said. This type of experience wouldn’t be possible without Camardella, Collopy said.

—Rebekah Khoury is a Journalism 271NFstudent. She wrote this story for a class assignment.