About John Nanni, The Producer

When John is producing others, he absolutely loves to help inspire them. To handle all of the technical aspects of recording, so they don’t even have to think about that. He likes to capture their performances. He likes to get the best out of each and every one. If they track multiple takes, he can hear if they either play a certain section a certain way, the way they want or, if they sing it a different way, he can help them find whatever emotion they’re looking to achieve.

WHAT DO YOU LIKE ABOUT PRODUCING OTHERS OR YOURSELF?

I’m a big believer that every track must be super quality. Then when you combine all the tracks together you have an excellent product. Producing myself is fun, but it takes me longer because I am not accountable to anybody. So, in a way, that’s why the HICKORY RUN album took a while for me to finish it. Funny story about coming into my producing chops… One evening at the Tin Roof on Music Row, I was talking with Michael Knox, Jason Aldean’s producer and I told him that I’d been working on my rock album, LIFE’S WINDOWS, for five years. He looked over his glass of beer at me and said, “Well, you better get faster!’”

WHAT GENRES DO YOU LIKE TO WRITE IN OR PRODUCE?

I think I’m more straight-ahead, but pop, rock, and country are the main three. I’ve written everything from classic rock to twangy country including jazz instrumentals. As far as producing, I tend to work with performers who are similar, that have pop chops, or folk chops, or a little bit of country. People have told me that I have a gift for bringing out their best talents. That’s one of the highest compliments I’ve ever gotten.

WHAT DOES THE CHALLENGE OF PRODUCING DO FOR YOU?

I think you have to be a bit on the OCD side to enjoy it as much as I do. You have to be so focused on detail and so focused on finishing something. Being a professional project manager has helped me understand how projects have to get done. Being a music producer is very similar to being a project manager. You are responsible for managing everything from your budget, to scheduling studio time, to preparation, to charting the songs, to making sure artists are doing what they have to do and making sure you can line up top session players when you need them.

All of that comes together to make a musical project succeed. It is a ton of work, actually, but I enjoy taking the variety of pieces and parts and combining them into a song, into a mix, and making sure everybody’s doing their job, that every instrument is right where it needs to be. When you put it all together it has to communicate cohesively. At the end of that process, is where my ultimate satisfaction waits.

WHAT WOULD YOU MOST LIKE TO BE REMEMBERED FOR MUSICALLY?

Just the joy that I bring to each project—my love of music, my respect for the artist, and the quality of my productions.

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