“It’s not over until the fat lady sings…”
Name: Murray Lake
Occupation: Studio Owner @ Sentir Studios, Producer, DJ
Current Location: Sydney
The first thing I did when I woke up this morning was…Crawl to Campos for filtered Mexican coffee and avocado on toast.
When I was a child I wanted to be…An olympic swimmer! I spend a huge part of my childhood in the pool. After that, a property developer.
The studies I took to get where I am…Carpentry trade and Builder’s License! Not really music related at all, but it did come in handy when i built the studio.
I’m inspired by…Stories of how successful people got to where they are. Im particularly excited but the creative process behind a project. There is something very inspiring in discovering how someone you respect crosses a hurdle.
I admire…Philippe Zdar! I think his work is incredible! His magic with MC Solaar, Cassius, Kindness, Phoenix and more recently Flo Morrissey; have become sonic benchmarks for other aspiring producers around the world.
I recently worked with Aeroplane and we were chatting about this exact question. He then started talking about Sebastien Tellier’s masterpiece ‘La Ritournelle’. This was the first time i had listened to the record, and it’s now become my favourite for a few different reasons. It wasn’t until after we’d listened that he told me the story behind this record and that Zdar had recorded and mixed it. This just cements the fact Philippe Zdar is a genius.
The tools I can’t live without…Software would be Pro Tools 11 HD.Hardware would be an E-mu SP 1200 drum machine, Yamaha CP70 piano, Roland RE-201 tape delay, API 550A EQ and a pair of AKG C460B microphones.
I’m most creative when I’m…In the studio in the dead of night. Your phone doesn’t ring, no on is emailing you and it almost feels like the world is asleep so you can immerse yourself in the music without any distractions.
My favourite book…The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao.
I’m currently listening too…
Curtis Harding – Soul Power
Flo Morrissey – Pages of Gold
Joakim – Tropic of Love
Jamie Lidell – Jim
Al Green – Call Me.
The obstacles that have come my way…The entire process of building a studio from scratch; quite literally every single day was an obstacle. Floating floors, suspending ceilings, wiring balanced and unbalanced equipment, satisfying the Acoustic Engineer.
My favourite place in the world…East coast of Tasmania.
I would like to travel…Petra, Jordan.
My travel essentials are…Earplugs, camera and film.
One thing I would like to do but haven’t got around to it yet…Collaborate with Mark Ronson & Philippe Zdar.
The highlights over the past 12 months have been…One of the highlights was obviously building the studio; but since completing that, its been the catalyst for the things that came. Recording and mixing for MK, Freddie Gibbs, Thandi Phoenix and most recently an inspiration of mine; Aeroplane!!
The latest project I’m working on…A 70’s soul album. Real instruments, vintage microphones, preamps and 1/4” tape.
Advice I have to share for those who want to get into this profession…Don’t worry about comparing yourself to anybody else.It sometimes seems everyone else is moving forward, and you’re trapped not going anywhere, but as long as you trust your intuition, willing to make sacrifices and have conviction in what you’re doing, everything will work out fine.You’re running your own race.
Photography: Katie Kaars
Interview: Michelle Owen