We had the good fortune of connecting with Nicholas Setter and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Nicholas, how do you think about risk?
As someone who tends to overthink the possible outcomes of important decisions, I’ve found it difficult to take risks at times. I can get caught up in weighing the pros and cons of a situation, but at some point you need to move forward and accept what you decided. Of course this depends on what we’re talking about because certain decisions can have more of an impact on your life than others, but following your gut is important.
In terms of taking risks in your career, it’s important to have all the information you need to help yourself feel better about your choice. Once you’ve made your decision you need to get behind it 100% and stop overthinking beyond that point. I’m currently transitioning from my full-time office job to following my passion in music. Leaving behind a steady income with benefits for a freelance career is certainly a risk, but I’m doing what feels right for me. Life is too short to not take risks.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I’ve been working on music for brand videos lately and I’ve really been enjoying that process. I like how the directors/editors have their own vision for the music and I need to execute that the best I can. This usually brings me out of my comfort zone in terms of what I would have made on my own without direction, but ends up yielding great results. In these projects I’m composing the music, producing/arranging the parts, playing the parts, and mixing myself. I’m also always excited to work with artists as a co-writer or producer because this process also makes you grow and think outside the box a bit.
It took me a while to realize where I wanted to be within music. I played guitar in bands growing up, writing and recording ourselves in my friend’s basement (shoutout to Mike Gordon). While in college I focused on songwriting & production, but still played live gigs along the way until a few years ago. I do enjoy playing live, but I realized I gravitated towards spending time in the studio where I felt I could be more creative. I dove even deeper into educating myself on how to become a better mix engineer so I could improve the quality of my work which ended up inspiring me to update the way I produce. I feel like you should always be learning along the way. It’s the only way you get better and personally it’s the only way I can check-in on my progress and be honest with myself.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
We would definitely need to stop a Salazars for some tacos & margaritas first. Followed by Frogtown brewery and Eagle Rock brewery for “desert” and a good hang. Hiking up at Griffith Observatory is always needed after some tacos.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
My shoutout goes to my love Kelli Kay. She has been there for me for all of the ups and downs through our years together. She is always helping me grow in different ways and has played a big role in helping me get to a point in life where I get to work on what I’m passionate about. I couldn’t have asked for a more supportive partner. I really don’t think I would be where I am today without this lovely lady.
I also want to give a shoutout to Casey Kalmenson. I started working on music with Casey shortly after I first moved to LA. We started the group “Little Monarch” together and still make music along with producing for other artists. At this point we have a great shorthand when working together and she’s always inspiring me.
Adam Brown, Casey Kalmenson, Kelli Kay