August 19, 2023
Steven "RAWQWLTY" Tejeda is a Dominican born Engineer, Mixer & Producer from East Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania, currently residing in Brooklyn, NY.
Apart from accruing some awesome credits working out of Jungle City Studios NYC, a fun and different highlight would be becoming part of the Spotify & Gimlet Media fiction series department. Working on an assortment of amazing immersive audio stories and shows that the world seems to really be digging right now. Shows like Red Frontier and an upcoming show by Jordan Peele and his company Monkey Paw Productions have been the biggest highlights thus far.
My role is usually one of engineer and vocal producer when I'm engineering and mixer is my role for some projects following recording. In the Audio series world, my main role is Dialogue Editor.
Music was ALWAYS around me growing up. Being of Dominican descent, I was exposed to plenty of Latin genres like Salsa, Merengue and Bachata as well as Ballads, R&B and Hip-Hop down the line. This made my palette for music and hearing sounds very wide and defined.
My main inspiration was initially my grandfather who would bust out a guitar at most family gatherings and start playing and singing. In my adolescence, some of my biggest inspirations became Noah "40" Shebib, Manny Marroquin, Dr. Dre & Timbaland. Their unique sound and musical impacts in my life as well as the industry were literally life changing.
A big moment of frustration for me was definitely migrating from PA to NY and going from having a whole studio room to going to a NY apartment where space was... well, much less. So having to make a studio space when I first came to the city was a bit of a headache and had a small impact in some of my mixing work but I quickly re-adjusted and made it work. Part of that was relying on great headphones to reference on which is what has brought to my attention the Audeze brand from all the high praises from some of my peers as well as one of my heroes, Manny Marroquin.
Lately I've been finding myself really enjoying summing mixers. I've owned/demoed the Burl B32, SPL Mixdream and RND Orbit 5057 throughout the last few years and have loved using them and what hey bring to my previously mostly digital workflow.
Train your ears but also take care of your ears!
Since I got into music, headphones have been integral for me for that up-close and personal listen pass. There're times I start off a mix or edit in headphones and there's times I just reference through them to make tweaks in the end. They're obviously also super important for when I'm on the go and need to make edits or tweaks on the road or in hotel rooms.
They have allowed me the highest fidelity listening experience I've ever had on headphones. Never have I heard so much detail and separation between elements while mixing on headphones. They allow me to confidently make mix decisions that translate every time.
I have recently been working on mixing rising star Juanialys' debut album and these have made a huge difference in my workflow specially when making mix tweaks in less-than-ideal listening environments.