Things That Make My Ears Go “Hell Yeah!”

Jo (aka Rev J Ellis II)

Records have always fascinated me. Even some of my earliest memories have a soundtrack of whatever was playing in the background, like my parents playing old Willie Nelson tapes in the car as we drove to my grandparents’ farm on holidays, and even before the thought of making a living from producing records entered my mind certain records just always had a “certain something” that, back then, I couldn’t put my finger on but it gave me goosebumps and drew me right into it. I later on learned that that “certain something” was great production.

I’m of the opinion that great songs don’t always equal great production, but for any production to be great the song most definitely needs to be. Through the years of honing my skills as a producer I’ve learned a lot about what I like and what I don’t like in records. Having quite specific tastes in this regard has, at different times, felt like both my biggest blessing and my biggest curse. I spend my life working towards making the records I work on sound and feel the way that the music that inspires me does. When amazing songs are captured in such a way that they jump out of the speakers, hit me in the chest and cause me to feel what the artist intended me to feel, I feel like there’s nothing in the world that compares to that.

That said, when people ask me exactly what it is that I like (and don’t like) in records, it can be pretty hard to explain. Those around me, though, know that I love talking about the things I love so I thought it would be cool to write about tracks that I feel were done particularly well. For as long as I can keep it up I’ll do this once a week. Be warned that “Revved Up Tracks With The Rev” will be nothing but my own opinions about productions that excite me and make my ears go “HELL YEAH!”, which many may find to be completely off, so please join in the discussion. We may very well learn some cool stuff from each other.

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