You are sending a link to... Is A Pro Tools Certification Worth The Money?
I have been a producer / songwriter / studio owner for many years and I have worked with the best of the best engineers in the business. We just started a new Pro Tools and Recording School at our Thirteen Degrees Studio and although I am not one of the Pro Tools instructors, I thought I would bolster my skills by getting certified. So I asked a couple of our engineer-instructors if it was worth travelling to Atlanta, our closest certification center, to take the course. I also asked them something I would have never thought to ask in the many, many years of working with them... "Do you have a Pro Tools Certification?" They just said, "Of course not."
Now bear in mind, these are Grammy Winning engineers. It seems that at one point a few years ago Pro Tools Certifications were very popular for engineers wishing to increase their value in the marketplace. As the marketplace has gotten even tighter over the years, certifications mean very little. The only criteria that matters is in the final mix. How does the music sound? In the words of Beatles' producer George Martin, "All You Need Is Ears". All of the technical skills of running a Pro Tools system can be learned through a combination of short courses, hours of practice, and looking over the shoulder of people who have a proven track record in the real world of studio recording. Knowing every hot key shortcut in the world will do little for you if you can't hear why the engineer is rolling off a track at 1khz or double compressing a vocal to make it jump off the record. The most important lesson you can learn as an aspiring engineer, or musician, is to train your ears and your soul. If you can't feel the music then you certainly can't get the results you want by dialing in numbers. It is much easier to know what you want to hear first and to then learn the mechanics of how to achieve that result.
One more word of advice from someone who has worked with a bucket full of top engineers. Karma is a "bitch". Even the hottest engineers in the world cool off or fall prey to the shrinking market. Given my choice between 2 equally qualified engineers, one with the personality of an over ripe avacado and one who is an absolute pleasure to work with, guess which one I choose to work with and which one I'd like to make guacamole with? 'nuff said!
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"Great atmosphere in the studio. Extremely comfortable and easy to work and learn. The pro tools class was awesome. Dave Dillbeck and Ken Barken were great teachers and the class taught me so many tricks. And it was at a pace that was easy to understand. Extremely high quality studio. Definitely the place to be in Nashville if you are looking to record. or to take any of the classes that they offer here."...Jason Cohen (Drummer)
"Last weekend I took a course in Pro Tools and it was great! The course content was incredibly useful and I am confident that it will undoubtedly be beneficial to my musical career and ambitions. Dave and Ken are veterans in the music industry and have a lot of wisdom and valuable information to offer students. I highly recommend taking a course at the beautiful Thirteen Degrees Studio!"... Andre Madatian (Guitar, Bass, Composer)
"Beautiful studio and excellent staff. Recently took their class on Protools and learned so much about the program. The instructors Dave Dillbeck and Ken Barken were incredibly knowledgable, helpful, and an all around nice guys. Would recommend to anyone looking to get some studio recordings or to learn something new."... Justin Lacey (Vocals)
"The guys at Thirteen Degrees Studio are a wealth of ProTools knowledge, so easy to work with and reasonably priced. I highly recommend this class and the studio."... Mitchell Brown, Nashville Bass Player (Joey and Rory)
Thirteen Degrees Studio
1445 Willowbrooke Circle
Franklin, TN 37069