At Regrown Recordings, giving native artists an opportunity to step up | Herald Neighborhood Newspapers


In a repurposed dwelling on Hayes Avenue, close to Baldwin Harbor Park, Matt Barba, the proprietor of Regrown Recordings, is quietly contributing to the Nassau County recording and music scene.

Barba opened the studio in July 2019, in his mother and father’ previous home. Since then he has helped Lengthy Island artists file music, podcasts and different audio work.

 “I do know what it takes to run an expert studio,” Barba mentioned. “I needed to take that and distill it right into a small dwelling studio the place native artists can afford high-quality service.”

Most not too long ago, Barba, 26, a 2014 graduate of Baldwin Excessive College who now lives in Queens, labored with two native artists, Andrew “FancyCat” Fonseca and Jill Bellovin, on new albums. Bellovin, who graduated from Baldwin Excessive in 2013 and is a co-founder of Universe Metropolis NYC, an aquaculture farm primarily based in Brooklyn, mentioned she met Barba in the highschool band program, they usually reconnected in 2019, when she heard that he had opened a studio. She ebook timed with him, and recorded a two-song challenge, and an alternate rock and folks album, “Flip to Gentle.” 

Barba helped carry her imaginative and prescient to life, Bellovin mentioned, and was skilled and attentive. Her album is ready to be launched in February, independently on streaming platforms, below the stage identify Jill B. Lovin.

“Rising up, there weren’t many artistic shops round in Baldwin,” Bellovin mentioned. “So I used to be actually excited to assist an area recording studio and produce my music with him.”

Fonseca, one other native musician, mentioned he has been working with Barba for a few 12 months. Regardless of the disappointment he expresses in his music, Fonseca mentioned, he had plenty of enjoyable with Barba whereas they have been recording.

“Matt Barba is nice,” Fonseca mentioned. “He’s good on the fly, he’s obtained a well-rounded array of devices and really helpful software program. Working with him has been a pleasure.”

Fonseca mentioned he met Barba on the Baldwin Public Library through the coronavirus pandemic, when Barba was employed by the library to file native artists in reside units at his studio, which aired on the library’s Fb web page. Fonseca mentioned that after talking with Barba briefly, he realized he needed to work with him.

“He’s constructed a pleasant, cozy studio proper right here in Baldwin, which I’d’ve by no means identified was there,” Fonseca mentioned. “However I’m glad I do know it’s there now.”

Apart from musical recordings, Barba additionally hosts the Sarutobi Sports activities Podcast within the latest enlargement of his studio, the podcast room. Initially, he mentioned, he hosted the podcast in his important recording room, organising folding tables. However when the podcasters, John Mootoo and Mylz Wilson, of Baldwin, and Justin Thomas, of New Rochelle, needed to work with him frequently, he determined to develop his studio into an unused room.

Barba grew up within the Hayes Avenue dwelling together with his siblings, Nick and Danielle. It was ravaged by Hurricane Sandy in 2012, however since then his household has renovated it and raised it about 4 toes. His mother and father nonetheless reside there, however they let him flip the primary ground right into a studio. 

He constructed it on a funds, he mentioned, which pressured him to be artistic with its design. He was impressed to construct with recycled and “upcycled” supplies, which in flip impressed the identify Regrown Recordings.

In 2019 he began driving round Baldwin, amassing discarded supplies, and posted alerts on social media, asking for recycled or waste supplies. He constructed two desks, one for the principle recording room and one other for the podcast room, out of recycled completed plywood. On of the partitions within the recording room was customary from random items of wooden. He realized woodworking and development abilities from his father, who’s additionally named Matt, which, the youthful Matt mentioned, got here in useful.

“I’ve at all times had the DIY mentality,” he mentioned. “I had the instruments and the abilities, so I did it myself.”

In July 2019, he mentioned, he started promoting, and opened the studio to native artists. “I actually needed this place to be a spot the place I can pursue my ardour and hone my craft, whereas performing as a haven for native artists in Nassau County,” he mentioned.

Barba has identified his entire life, he mentioned, that he needed to work in music. “I’ve been a musician my entire life,” he mentioned, having realized devices like trombone in elementary faculty, and guitar at Baldwin Center College. “Creating music isn’t an choice for me. I must do it to really feel fulfilled and be completely happy. As a lot as I like making my very own music, I spotted the enjoyment in my life helps others create theirs.”

When he performed Guitar Hero on his Play Station 2 in fifth grade, he recalled, he was impressed to find new music. “It launched a era of youngsters round my age to all of the guitarists and musicians that our mother and father listened to,” he mentioned. “I do know it helped me to need too play devices and dive into the world of music.”

After he graduated from highschool, Barba studied music enterprise at Syracuse College, graduating in 2018. He mentioned his expertise there impressed him to study audio engineering and recording. In school, he mentioned, “I spent plenty of that point experimenting and attempting to determine the most effective methods to file music. Being in a music faculty, I had plenty of pals, and budding artists, who have been trying to file issues.”

Though there was a recording studio on campus, Barba defined, it tended to be full of scholars doing work for courses. So he and his pals produced reside DIY exhibits in his condo off campus.

“I used to be doing no matter I might to get my arms within the audio recording world,” he mentioned.

In the summertime of 2014, he interned as a sound engineer at Cove Metropolis Sound Studios in Glen Cove. The next 12 months, he started one other internship, at Full Stack Manufacturing NY, a Brooklyn-based reside occasion manufacturing firm that he now owns. He joined the corporate, he mentioned, to study reside manufacturing as a stagehand and audio engineer, which he did for seven years. In 2018, when the proprietor retired, Barba was requested to take over the corporate.

In 2016, he had spent a semester of his junior 12 months at Syracuse finding out music recording at Jingle Punks and Excellent Sound Studios in California. There, he mentioned, he had the possibility to work alongside artists like T Ache and 21 Savage, which heightened his want to be a sound engineer.

“That was an eye-opening expertise, and I used to be actually working at a special degree, Barba mentioned. “This made me notice I might file music at an expert degree.”



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