Behind the Board with Producer/Engineer Sylvia Massy
By Alison Richter
As seen in Guitar Girl Magazine Issue 9, Autumn 2019
“This is the best job in the world. It’s like I get to be a part of a band for two months, and then I get to leave that band and go on to the next band for a month and leave that band and go to the next one for a few days. I’ve joined so many bands, and these connections with people last a lifetime. I’m still in contact with the people I recorded in the late ’80s. They’re friends forever. We go through this emotional roller coaster together, and I’m helping them realize their emotional communication through their stories. I feel like I really contribute to making
these dreams happen for people. What a great job! I would recommend it for anyone.
The challenge with being a girl and starting out, again, is at one point you will have to make the decision: Is it going to be family or is it going to be career? You can’t get away from it. If you’re really serious about doing this type of thing and making it a lifelong career, there will be that point. If you’re fine with not having kids, or if you have a support system, that’s great; you can have it all.
It’s difficult to make money right away, so you will be broke for a while, but if you can eat ramen and have roommates and drive a crappy car, you’ll love life. My life today — I can’t believe it. I travel around the world. Last year I was in twelve countries. This year I’ll be in another fifteen countries. It’s just insane. And I get to record in all these unusual places. I get to be so creative, and I wouldn’t trade it for anything!
So be patient. I’d say for anyone getting into it, be patient. When you move to a new town, give it a couple of years, try to make as many connections as you can, be likeable, don’t be afraid, don’t be shy. With shyness you become a wallflower, so you have to really stand out in the crowd, and you’ll make it. And be good at what you do. Know your stuff. There’s so much ahead for anybody who wants to do this, and I’m very excited for all the girls who are interested in getting involved.”