AS FORWARDED BY MITCH EASTER
Ted Comerford’s lifelong love of music has taken him through every twist and turn of performing and recording. His over 15 years experience has given him a comprehensive knowledge of "How It All Works"- at record labels, on stage, and in the recording studio. Artists working with Ted invariably have a great experience and frequently return to collaborate on their next record and beyond!
He has a unique ability to present artists in a way that broadens their audience and builds upon the artist’s own vision. He knows that “integrity” and “success” are NOT incompatible concepts! Ted is a person who needs a job title somewhat beyond the traditional ones left over from the music business of the past, so these days he considers himself: Sonic Instigator! This tells you that his approach is agile and creative, that making the record is going to be an Adventure! Records that contain the spark of a unique voice are the ones people care about, and this is what Ted understands and brings forward in his sessions.
Although Ted can perform all the tasks needed to make a record, he is a great collaborator and recognizes the value of bringing in a wide range of well-known music and sonic experts on his projects. Jack Joseph Puig, Paul David Hager, Jeff Juliano, Greg Calbi, Joe Zook, and Michael Brauer are among his friends and frequent associates. Because of his impressive ability to bring together the right team and realistic sense of budgets, Ted has always made records that sound first-rate even when the finances were humble.
Therefore a lot of Sonic Instigation is always going on! Recently Ted has been working on sessions for the very exciting Jonas Sees In Color and the intriguing Jukebox the Ghost, while bands he’s worked with for years like Virginia Coalition and Juniper Lane continue to have devoted fans and sellout shows. Over the years, Ted has taken a lot of Songs and helped turn them into Great Songs. Making this happen in the studio is great fun for all, and you can hear it in the results! That’s the kind of energy a popular record has to have, and it’s the kind of record Ted knows how to make.
What is a Sonic Instigator?
Ted: It's a joke. Something that started over lunch w/ Mitch (Easter). We were laughing (and grumbling) about how everyone is a "producer" these days. The word "producer" essentially means "I was around for session". HA! Bennett Kaufman (Ted's former manager and RCA President) had a perfect joke about this...
What's makes someone a music producer? A CELLPHONE (zing)
Anyway, I decided to change my "title" on my website and Sonic Instigator stuck. It's just a joke and I am still credited as producer on records.
Official Fake Definition:
n. One who deliberately amplifies ideas and incites musical creativity.
See also: producer, engineer, songwriter, musician
What experience do you have?
I've made more than 100 records. These records have been released by labels like Sony, Universal, Warner Bros, Atlantic, Side One Dummy, Yep Rock, Cherry Hill, and many more. I've been signed to major labels as well as large publishing companies. I've played too many shows to count and have toured and shared the bill with loads of amazing bands. Maroon 5, The Strokes, Apples in Stereo, Matthew Sweet, Indigo Girls, Toad the Wet Sprocket, Gavin DeGraw, Sara Bareilles , and JET immediately jump to mind. I am sure I am missing quite a few. It's always weird to talk about this stuff because you feel like a name-dropping machine, but it's been a blast so far! I have been very lucky. I've also had the opportunity to work with some of the best producers, engineers, and mixers in the music industry.
What makes you any different from other producers?
I think the "difference" that artists hopefully feel is that we are in this together. The record sinks or swims because everyone worked hard. Artist, producer, engineer, mixer, mastering engineer. EVERYONE matters. I'm very happy that many artists I've worked with realize how much I want them to succeed and I try to network all my artists and my industry contacts whenever possible. I am proud that I've helped artists get record deals, publishing deals, managers, lawyers, whatever...it's hard to get noticed these days. There are an estimated 2.5 million musicians on ReverbNation alone!!! That's a lot of music...
One thing that also gets overlooked is how happy I am to Co-produce, Engineer, or simply assistant engineer. Every artist has different needs. I am lucky to do what I love and I love being in and around recording studios. Aside from often engineering my own work I've engineered and assisted for some amazing sessions, Joe Walsh, War on Drugs, Ben Folds Five, and Polvo are among my favorites.
Why did you put so much music on your site?
Over the years I've had several sites. I just wanted a place to show off the artists and to have a simpler place to listen. I kinda hate "look at me" sites, so just wanted something that showcased the artists and the songs. I also sometimesget asked about the more production heavy, vibe-oriented tracks I've produced. They are not always the singles, but artists ask, so I put them up on the listening page. I'm always flattered when artists take the time to listen.