Featured Artist

Tchad Blake

Usually in partnership with producer Mitchell Froom, engineer Tchad Blake crafted some of the most adventurous -- at times, even avant-garde -- acoustic landscapes to hit mainstream music during the '90s. Working in typically organic, stripped-down styles (guitar-based pop/rock, roots rock, singer/songwriter records, world music), Blake's unorthodox techniques -- low-fidelity distortion, vintage compressors and effects pedals, mic filters made from everyday found objects, and so on -- gave his work a distinctive, immediately identifiable sound, which grew increasingly odd as his aesthetic developed. Blake began his career at age 25 (circa 1979) as an assistant engineer in Los Angeles; in 1983, he began a five-year stint at the Sunset Sound Factory, where he met Froom in 1986 when the two worked on Crowded House's self-titled debut. The two soon began working together often, and began a long relationship with Richard Thompson on the same year's Daring Adventures. As the '80s ended, the duo worked with Paul McCartney, the Pretenders, Los Lobos, and T-Bone Burnett; Blake also worked on some of Tom Waits' more cacophonous albums, like Frank's Wild Years and Bone Machine.