We had the good fortune of connecting with Van Isaacson & Sam Roller and we’ve shared our conversation below.
When we started as a studio, we made a decision to invest in the artists we work with and their careers. A lot of young, up and coming artists typically don’t have the same financial support that a label-supported artist would, and their music may even be better. Our goal has always been to work with artists on music we love, not take money from their pockets beyond their means. Ideally, we’ll keep working with these artists until financial backing comes along and we’re able to grow their careers as a team.
Oftentimes taking these risks pays off in more than just our production fee — we’ve been able to develop relationships with artists that hopefully allow us to flourish alongside them as things progress. All of the time and effort we invest in these artists could easily be seen as a risk, but for us, it’s just how it should be.
Alright, so let’s move onto what allows you to succeed professionally?
We’re really community based and believe that music is best when it is collaborative and when it tells a story. Both of us have studied music in different capacities over the years and spent time practicing our instruments and respective crafts, but ultimately we’ve gotten to where we are from being open to new ideas and allowing everyone’s strengths to come through. It’s taken some time to get to where we are, but we certainly wouldn’t say it was hard. There’s a lot of talent around us, and we’re lucky to be able to work with such amazing folks.
If you had a client coming in to work with you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Here’s what it would look like in Nashville:
– Each day we’d have about two 4-5 hour long sessions, separated by lunch at a local East Nashville spot (Mitchell’s Deli or Mas Tacos are preferred).
– There are a few great coffee shops in East Nashville for the mid-afternoon pick me up, including but not limited to Sip, Portland Brew, and Frothy Monkey.
– Post evening session we’d likely grill out as the studio has a great little backyard area to hang out in.
– Later in the week (assuming work is done for the day), we have a couple favorite bars that would be on the docket. Dee’s Lounge, The Cobra, Pearl Diver, and for a close to the week, Attaboy.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
We met through artist Allison Mahal, and went on to form Lovegrove Studios after our first project together with her, the Me Now EP. She’s been a constant in our lives both as an artist but also a good friend to both of us, and we wouldn’t be doing this without her.
Several other artists along the way have helped us find out more about our styles and the way we work, but artist Leah Jean has been a consistent collaborator and makes producing fun, arguably the most important aspect of the job.
Lastly, while we run the studio as a duo, our work wouldn’t be nearly as listenable if it weren’t for our amazing mixing engineer Hayden Tumlin, who acts as the adult in the room. Our favorite mastering engineer Cameron Row is the icing on the cake and has been working with us since we started as well.
Matt Blum @blumshootsfilm