MUSIC MASTER MINDS – BALE
Nine months ago H&M Productions opened the doors to their recording studio in the Gulf Gate area of Sarasota, FL Founders and brothers, Marcus and Derek Ratzenboeck, classically trained musicians with Masters degrees, are happy with the direction the studio is going. “Artistically, we’re advanced, working with only the best,” says Marcus. Having worked with several local bands in Sarasota and establishing a rapport in the community, their deep roots in the music industry, along with their outside the box sound, allow them to branch out and bring nationally recognizable names into the studio; hence the new group they formed called BALE.
BALE defined in the dictionary as a “large package of raw or finished material tightly bound with twine or wire and often wrapped.” A more fitting name, there isn’t. It describes what these music masterminds can do.
People who are successful often have their finger on the pulse, changing with the time, but always several steps ahead. It’s no different with BALE. Business minded and with off the charts talent, they can play every genre, even ones you’ve never heard before. The group, in addition to the Ratzenboeck brothers, includes multi talented musician and writer Mike Partee and Matthew Borror, engineer extraordinaire and according to Marcus, “bad-ass drummer.”
“We don’t let too many people into this team for a reason – too many ideas too little done,” Marcus says, “sticking with what we do, what we know and what we’re learning.”
The core is BALE. They write the tracks and filter in feature artists like they did with Kinetic 9 and Two Headed Monster recently. They write the lyrics and lay the tracks for them; all the artist has to do is learn their stuff. “We gave Two Headed Monster some beats; they created the words,” says Derek. With collaboration from Pete Hansen, an affiliate of H&M Productions and me, Dayle Hoffmann, Independent Producer, we all pulled together and filmed a music video in two days for 2HM.
Creating energy that makes the artist comfortable even when they free-style, is priority. “How you work with people and how that chemistry flows is important, “ Derek tells me. “Were building our reputation in a different facet as musicians and artists. We’re well founded, but with our own studio, we’re still building up our portfolio and showing people what were capable of. We never want it to feel uncomfortable.”
Aside from a state of the art recording studio, H&M Productions has all the amenities an artist will need including, housing and transportation. Being so close to Siesta Key Beach, artists like Kinetic 9 are able to find inspiration within the famous white quartz crystal sand. “We can put them up in a vacation home. They do their homework and come in the next day and they’ve learned their lyrics, “says Marcus, “If it’s professional like, those are the artists we want to work with. Kinetic 9 stayed at my personal home. I felt comfortable with him. He’s a very humble guy and, in addition to being great to work with and his good ideas, he washes dishes and even folds clothes.”
With the power of technology it makes collaborating with everyone involved in the development process easier. For example, Derek Ratzenboeck, a Concert Violinist for New York City Ballet Orchestra resides in New York City. When he’s not in Sarasota, he is still able to lay tracks, create beats and acoustical design that’s sent in a file over the internet. Marcus Ratzenboeck, National Recording and Platinum selling Artist with the Rock Band Tantric and a Concert Violinist with The Florida Orchestra in Tampa/St. Pete, resides in Sarasota, makes the one hour drive back and forth several times a week for rehearsals, spends the weekend there for concerts and, if he has downtime, his computer allows him to continue the creative process. When in Sarasota, he spends ninety percent of his time with his engineers and the rest of the group at the studio – hard-work and dedication, whatever it takes. Still, it’s necessary for an artist to spend time in Sarasota at the recording studio in order to produce the highest quality product.
Both brothers agree the most exciting project they are working on now is their own. BALE is working under the radar producing and collaborating with national artists – 2013 will catapult them into main-stream considering some of the projects they’ve asked me to keep under wraps for now. Their genre is in a league of its own, described as Electronic Viper Trance. These talented musicians work with all types of artists including hip-hop, rock, classical, trance and reggae, integrating their sound flawlessly. BALE encompasses it all, just like the name states; ‘raw’ sounds that inspire the mind, a tightly bound ‘wired’ group ‘intertwining’ artists, offering a ‘complete package’ –now that’s a “wrap!”
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