Shelly Yakus – Mentoring
Mentors are a huge part of my story, but not all of them are like Olly Alcock who I sat with and played guitar and listened to music with. Some, like Jack Douglas and Shelly Yakus made records that inspired me to create music myself.
I grew up in a little Village called Crookham in Hampshire in England. My daily ritual was filled with visits to the local Record Stores, Boots the Chemist, Woolworth’s and The Record Box on Fleet High Street, where I sifted through albums reading the back covers assembling a mental note of all of the Musicians, Producers, Engineers and Studios who made the albums I loved! A consistent name that came up was Shelly Yakus. Shelly worked on John Lennon’s Masterpiece ‘Mind Games’ with the late great Roy Cicala, Blue Oyster Cult’s ‘Don’t Fear The Reaper, The Band’s ‘Music From The Big Pink’ and so much more!
I remember breaking up with my first girlfriend and being heartbroken, then along came ‘Romeo and Juliet’ by Dire Straits to ease my pain, recorded and mixed by of course Shelly Yakus. The great album ‘Damn The Torpedoes’ again recorded and mixed by Shelly was a huge influence on me!
Years later I moved to Los Angeles with my band and I started a studio, that studio morphed into another studio and there I met Jack Douglas. Jack was working in the room next to me and we became good friends and colleagues (although no one can match Jack’s resume, except a small elite!). One day I asked Jack about Roy Cicala and Shelly Yakus, he spoke with such huge respect for both of them and relayed how much he learned from their tutelage.
Jack introduced me to Shelly, immediately I found someone who was not only completely down to earth and approachable but was a master of his craft and a mentor to so many. Shelly through his recordings and through his friendship has become a huge mentor for me.
In today´s video I have the pleasure of interviewing Shelly and pick his brain about the making of of great records – which Shelly has recorded and mixed PLENTY! – recording techniques, production advice, songwriting and more.
It´s and amazing interview and it´s over 1.5 hours long! So grab your favourite beverage, some popcorn, sit back and learn from one of the greatest engineers of all time!
Have a marvellous time recording and mixing,