Alumni Update: Riley Bell, Professional Sound & Business (Studio Production Major)

Riley Bell, a graduate of our Professional Sound & Business (Studio Production Major) Program, recently worked as both a producer and engineer on the Grammy-nominated album Freudian. Freudian, the debut album of artist Daniel Caesar, has received two Grammy nominations; one for Best R&B Album, and another for Best R&B Performance (For the track ‘Get You’). We spoke with Riley about the project, the nominations, and what he’s been up to since his last update.

Can you tell me a little bit about your experience with Freudian?

“I started working with Daniel shortly after his Praise Break EP, I mixed and mastered “Acoustic Break” and have been working with him since – mixing and mastering his recordings. Freudian is an extension of that relationship, the album was started about a year ago and I was more or less working on it full-time from then until August when it was released. It was a great experience, the people who were involved in Freudian are a close family and we got closer over that experience.”

What has been the most helpful aspect of your Metalworks education?

“Metalworks got me in the door at Revolution [Recording] where I started as an intern. I would end up cutting my teeth in that building, in that studio. 10,000 hours later and I got good enough to go out and work with the pros.”

Any words of wisdom for current students or your fellow graduates?

“Like anything in life, it’s all about persistence and hard work. If you’re not going to push yourself to be better than anyone else locally, or even than the records you hear on the radio, then it’s not going to cut it. Be a perfectionist, strive to be the best at what you do. That’s universal advice, not music specific.”

Riley is continuing to balance working on developing local artists with writing and producing for established mainstream artists in the U.S. His success demonstrates what can be achieved with hard work and the right knowledge-base.

We’ll be keeping our fingers crossed for Riley and the Freudian record at the 60th Grammy Awards coming up on Sunday, January 28, 2018!

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