LEGENDARY SOUND ENGINEER Matt Forger WITH SPECIAL GUEST BARRY KEENAN

0
534

LEGENDARY SOUND ENGINEER Matt Forger WITH SPECIAL GUEST BARRY KEENAN

 

MATT FORGER MAY NOT BE A household name. However, he has worked as a Sound Engineer with some of the most incredible music legends in history. Michael Jackson, Quincy Jones, Lena Horne, Donna Summer, James Ingram, Michael McDonald, George Lucas, Francis Ford Coppola to name a few.

 

“The most fascinating aspect of being a Sound Engineer is getting to know these people and who they are” says Forger.

 

He moved to LA years ago to get into doing serious studio work. He worked on staff at the storied Westlake Studios. Forger looked over the shoulders of some of the most famous and accomplished musicians, producers and talent of all time. He was part of the process. In doing so–he always tried to understand their creative process. In the course of his work, he started as the assistant on the first Quincy Jones project- Lena Horne, Live on Broadway. At the time he was just learning the ropes. Quincy had his A team–and Matt would get to meet them–Bruce Swedien, Rod Temperton and Quincy Jones–the 4 of them would work on these albums. They worked 10, 12, 14 hours a day–for several months.

 

A lot of time was spent talking about their lives. These are the things he found the most fascinating. He initially met Michael Jackson working with Quincy Jones–working on Thriller.

 

On one tracking day working on rhythm–Paul McCartney was there with all the band members of Toto, Michael Jackson, George Martin–the Producer of the Beatles- at that moment he knew it was amazing. The process of working on Thriller was magical-all were focused on the music and had no idea how huge the album would be.

 

What always impressed Matt Forger was the fact that he was given an opportunity to see the dynamic between Michael Jackson and Paul McCartney and to see how things progressed. He said his thoughts were at the time–“I need to open myself up to absorb everything that was happening.”

 

Reflecting now, most important was standing next to George Martin–and so many of these legends in a room full of people at that caliber and tried to use it as a learning experience.

 

Thriller, still so strong today, was the focus and of course on the music. Emotional honesty that was happening in the studio- all of the elements were there to make something great–all great musicians, great engineers–no one knew at the time it would become the largest selling album on record but they all knew it was incredibly special and spectacular because of the effort that went into its creation.

 

His work with Michael Jackson began on Thriller, and it continued on with Bad, Dangerous, History, Blood on the Dancefloor–he also worked on the ET Storybook album with Quincy Jones and Steven Speilberg. Following the unprecedented success of Thriller- he worked on the video with John Landis. Most significantly- he recorded and mixed the Captain EO film, now in Anaheim Disneyland and EPCOT– it was produced by George Lucas and Directed by Francis Ford Coppola.

 

Currently, Matt Forger is collaborating with the multi-talented singer/songwriter, Barry Keenan. Keenan is the founding member of the rock group, Invisible Poet Kings. Together, Keenan and Forger are producing the upcoming Invisible Poet King album titled, “Mutiny In The Dream MATT FORGER MAY NOT BE A household name. However, he has worked as a Sound Engineer with some of the most incredible music legends in history. Michael Jackson, Quincy Jones, Lena Horne, Donna Summer, James Ingram, Michael McDonald, George Lucas, Francis Ford Coppola to name a few. “The most fascinating aspect of being a Sound Engineer is getting to know these people and who they are” says Forger. He moved to LA years ago to get into doing serious studio work. He worked on staff at the storied Westlake Studios. Forger looked over the shoulders of some of the most famous and accomplished musicians, producers and talent of all time. He was part of the process. In doing so–he always tried to understand their creative process. In the course of his work, he started as the assistant on the first Quincy Jones project- Lena Horne, Live on Broadway. At the time he was just learning the ropes. Quincy had his A team–and Matt would get to meet them–Bruce Swedien, Rod Temperton and Quincy Jones–the 4 of them would work on these albums. They worked 10, 12, 14 hours a day–for several months. A lot of time was spent talking about their lives. These are the things he found the most fascinating. He initially met Michael Jackson working with Quincy Jones–working on Thriller. On one tracking day working on rhythm–Paul McCartney was there with all the band members of Toto, Michael Jackson, George Martin–the Producer of the Beatles- at that moment he knew it was amazing. The process of working on Thriller was magical-all were focused on the music and had no idea how huge the album would be.

 

What always impressed Matt Forger was the fact that he was given an opportunity to see the dynamic between Michael Jackson and Paul McCartney and to see how things progressed. He said his thoughts were at the time–“I need to open myself up to absorb everything that was happening.” Reflecting now, most important was standing next to George Martin–and so many of these legends in a room full of people at that caliber and tried to use it as a learning experience. Thriller, still so strong today, was the focus and of course on the music. Emotional honesty that was happening in the studio- all of the elements were there to make something great–all great musicians, great engineers–no one knew at the time it would become the largest selling album on record but they all knew it was incredibly special and spectacular because of the effort that went into its creation.

 

His work with Michael Jackson began on Thriller, and it continued on with Bad, Dangerous, History, Blood on the Dancefloor–he also worked on the ET Storybook album with Quincy Jones and Steven Speilberg. Following the unprecedented success of Thriller- he worked on the video with John Landis. Most significantly- he recorded and mixed the Captain EO film, now in Anaheim Disneyland and EPCOT– it was produced by George Lucas and Directed by Francis Ford Coppola.

 

Currently, Matt Forger is collaborating with the multi-talented singer/songwriter, Barry Keenan. Keenan is the founding member of the rock group, Invisible Poet Kings. Together, Keenan and Forger are producing the upcoming Invisible Poet King album titled, “Mutiny In The Dream Tent” set for release in the summer of 2016. Family Beautiful Magazine caught up with Keenan at his lovely home near Los Angeles which he shares with his three children and his down syndrome brother. When you enter Keenan’s home, you can’t help but feel comfortable in a warm, welcoming atmosphere powered by a stimulating, musical energy.

 

Keenan’s professional background started at the early age of 15 when he recorded his first record, “The Desert Shall Blossom” with his popular New England band, The Neptunes. He had his first major publishing deal in NYC at age 19 and has been published by such notable companies as Warner/Chappell, Universal, All Nations, Criterion and Peer/Southern. He is now under contract with East of Sideways Music in Beverly Hills, CA.

 

Keenan has owned and operated two commercial recording studios and has an extensive recording engineer background. He has worked on the recorded music of artists such as Beck, Warren Zevon, Sting, Devo, Pantera, No Doubt, The Goo Goo Dolls, Solomon Burke and The Cranberries. Miles Copeland, manager of The Police and founder of IRS Records hired Keenan in 1984 to produce Adam Ant. He has received many notable awards such as SESAC’s highest honor in Nashville for his songs in Jean Claude Van Damme’s, Kickboxer–the #1 box office hit at the time. Recently, Invisible Poet Kings received two Akadamia awards. One for their cover of “You’ve Got To Hide Your Love Away”, Best Rock Cover Song category and “Under The Sun”, Best Pop Rock Song.

 

Keenan delicately balances both his worlds; his responsibility as a single parent and his working, musical endeavors. Despite his rock star appearance and being the author of a critically acclaimed “war protest song” titled, “Our Comfortable Lives,” Keenan sees himself as simply a regular guy in an overhyped, industry called “the music business.”

 

It comes then as no surprise that Keenan would make this statement: “Today more than ever, children need parents to be parents. Parents influence their children’s behavior, whether they intend to or not. For me, being a parent, being there for my children and caring for my brother is the most important thing I do.” His work as a songwriter/ recording artist is a reflection of that day to day life-style and the values contained therein.

 

But don’t think that this is some low key, boring kind of music. Keenan and his band rock with fresh melodies and enchanting vocal harmonies.
Keenan says it’s all about values and expressing those values in songwriting. His goal is to constantly improve his craft with quality songwriting. He is very socially aware and his concern for other human beings is paramount as is evident in many of his lyrics. He teamed up with Matt Forger because they discovered they both share the same values and live similar lifestyles. Barry Keenan, Matt Forger and Invisible Poet Kings are striving to bring back a modern approach to the classic style of music we all love so much. – Susan Short

NO COMMENTS

LEAVE A REPLY