Bryan Cook is a professional music mixer and engineer based in Los Angeles, California, who works with artists big and small using gear both vintage and modern.
Bryan got his start in the music industry by cutting analog tape with razor blades and calibrating Studer A800 machines at Blue Jay Recording Studio in Carlisle, Massachusetts. He was a student at the Berklee College of Music in Boston at the time, playing jazz and studying music production and engineering. The internship at Blue Jay gave Bryan the opportunity to observe producers like Tom Dowd and mixers like Michael Brauer.
After graduating from Berklee, Bryan headed to Los Angeles, where he was hired as a runner at the legendary A&M Studios, which later became Henson Studios. Before long he earned his spot as an assistant engineer, working on sessions with No Doubt, the Wallflowers, Bruce Springsteen, Aimee Mann, Rage Against the Machine, Maná, and others.
It was in a session with the band Live in 2000 that he first saw the digital revolution about to take over the music industry. Techs wheeled out the analog tape machines to make space for a Pro Tools rig. A newfangled webcam streamed the session online for fans around the world to see.
Bryan struck out on his own in 2002 and grew more familiar with digital tools – learning how to seamlessly edit together different takes, tune vocals, and manage hundreds of tracks. For four years, Bryan was the engineer and mixer for producer and composer Mike Andrews, working on projects such as Inara George’s All Rise, Gary Jules’s self-titled album, and the soundtrack to the movie Walk Hard (starring John C. Reilly). He also recorded and mixed the “Age of Aquarius” finale for the Judd Apatow movie The Forty-Year-Old Virgin and the soundtrack of Miranda July’s Me and You and Everyone We Know.
In recent years, Bryan has mixed songs by a variety of artists, including U2 and One Republic (including a song on the platinum-selling Native album), Jem, and Meiko. He has recorded Cheap Trick, Duran Duran, Richie Sambora, Delta Rae, and others. His work for Train includes recording songs on Save Me San Francisco, including “Hey Soul Sister,” a single that went six times platinum. He earned a Norwegian platinum record for engineering and mixing Big Bang’s Edendale. And he recorded the Raconteurs, Fleet Foxes, Iggy Pop, Queens of the Stone Age, Cold War Kids, Damien Rice, the Eels, and Autolux for Nigel Godrich’s well-received From the Basement series.
Most of the mixing projects were done in Bryan's studio, which is equipped with ProTools HDX running on a MacPro. His collection of analog outboard gear includes an EMT 140 plate reverb, a Retro Sta-Level, a Distressor, an 1176, Transient Designers, guitar pedals like Memory Man, Holy Grail and others, a rack mount sans amp, a dbx 120x and a Leslie speaker cabinet. For plug-ins, he uses UAD, Soundtoys, FabFilter, Waves, Altiverb, Valhalla and much more. He runs Apogee converters into a Folcrom analog summing mixer fitted with JCF Audio LEVR active summing modules. His stereo bus features an NTI EQ3D equalizer and Dramastic Obsidian compressor. He listens to his work through Dynaudio BM15A speakers, but also uses an old-school boom box from the '80s and a variety of other small speakers and headphones to make sure the music sounds right in the real world, too.
Whether he is working on pop, country, punk, or indie rock, Bryan prides himself on professionalism and warmth in the studio. It’s his mission to help musicians produce their best work by creating an environment where they have the courage to take risks. Bryan's long-term clients appreciate the trust they've built with him so they can push each other creatively. Through this collaboration, he hopes his musical ear and technical expertise lead to sounds that appeal to the heart as well as the head.