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Life & Work with Jonas Wilson

Today we’d like to introduce you to Jonas Wilson.

Hi Jonas, thanks for joining us today. We’d love for you to start by introducing yourself.
I’ve been a touring /performing musician since I was a young teenager. I got interested in record production and sound engineering at around the age of 18. It was the year 2000, I had some record deals and other things go sour around that time and started interning for a Producer /engineer Dave McNair. I followed him around the country, working with bands like The String Cheese Incident and Los super 7. We worked in some amazing studios around the country me mostly making coffee and learning. I was simultaneously starting a new punk rock and indie bands around Austin and had been making records for friends bands and my own on an 8trk tape machine in my parents living room and eventually I took over a barn on our property for a few years of my early 20s producing some things for small labels and bands I’d meet on the road. I opened several commercial spaces that I kept afloat while teaching at the Austin School Of Music for a decade. I eventually decided in 2010 to stop paying rent in Austin on commercial spaces and moved to a remote location to produce more bands and build out a studio in the country. In 2011 the fires that decimated the pine forest out here burned my studio and all my equipment down. I was in a rut for my 30th birthday. No studio, No Job, just took what I could and put a down payment on a place In the downtown of Bastrop. The studio just failed out here through early 2013. I just met my wife at that time and started a new band called The Midnight Stroll with my friend Aaron Behrens (Ghostland Observatory singer) So I put a tenant in the house and we moved the equipment onto his property. We toured and worked on our records and I produced bands and film scores and just worked there till 2018. My wife and I decided as that band got less busy and we wanted to get out of the apartment and buy a house. Austin just kinda priced us out. So we took a chance and remodeled the house when the tenants lease and moved back to Bastrop. I found it very different my neighbors were musicians, and my work had been rebuilding. Suddenly I was really busy and decided I needed to try running a label and put out some of my friend’s records I was producing. I made some cassettes two years and hundreds of cassettes later here I am busier than ever running Mr pink records, and my studio is still getting new clients, and the label now has over 16 bands I represent.

Would you say it’s been a smooth road, and if not, what are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced along the way?
I think I covered that I’m my previous question. Definitely not a smooth road. I mentioned my struggles to get where I am. I wouldn’t change a thing, though. Everything led me to where I am and prepared me for this moment.

Thanks for sharing that. So, maybe next you can tell us a bit more about your work?
Well, as a performer, I’m known for my work with obsolete technology like analog tape machines on stage, my roots were in blues music and improvisation. . As a producer I like to think I’m sonically adventurous and pride myself on being able to fill the shoe that needs it In most musical and creative situations. That element of improvisation still is what I thrive on. But now it’s expanded a philosophical stance, not just a performance on an instrument. I realized last ten years. I have to be more than just a musician. I had to be a cheerleader and listener and an educator and student all at once. My real job is to help artist beat their own self-doubt and provide an open work environment and a unique selection of tools and ideas. Solving problems is the job and problems that could have multiple solutions. I thrive when the ideas start running dry for my clients.

What makes you happy?
Being allowed to even participate in this adventure. I’m almost 40 and I’ve managed to make life and career out of a dying industry and be a full time artist and get curate a label of my talented friends and peers. Happiness to me is one more day I get to be involved with the community and every record or film I score I do or cassette I sell or new idea I get to see through. I always assume this can come crashing down on me as this industry changes. It’s never been a job. It’s always been a calling, and happiness is to be the gift I’ve been given of finding a passion and having the support of my loved ones and community.

Pricing:

  • Studio Day Rates $350
  • Mastering $50 a song

Contact Info:

Image Credits
Nathan edge (studio shots) Olga Maystruk head shot.

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