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RD White

Artist Info
Name
RD White

Base of Operations:
Los Angeles

Occupation:
sound design and sound effects editor, computer musician, DJ and music label owner

Official Website:
http://www.thedesigneddisorder.net

Background:
RD White currently works as the head Sound Designer for film and television at The Engine Room Studios in Hollywood, CA. His credits include The Omen movie web trailers (20th Century Fox), Tim and Eric Awesome Show, Great Job! (Adult Swim/Cartoon Network) and many independent feature and short films.

In White’s decade of DJing, he has toured the UK and EU twice, played hundreds of shows in the US and hosted more than 50 music events in Los Angeles. He has released records on Touchin’ Bass (UK), Colony Productions (UK) and his own label The Designed Disorder (US). In his spare time, White makes music, travels the West Coast DJing and runs one of the few experimental-electronic music labels with worldwide distribution.

RD White
Multi-talented RD White has done sound design for various film and television productions including Tim and Eric Awesome Show, Great Job! and The Omen movie web trailers

White on M-Audio hardware: “My studio setup is ultra minimal—I have practically no outboard gear. The heart of my studio is an Apple Power Mac G5 dual 2.5GHz and EX66 reference monitors with an SBX subwoofer. I use my trusty Oxygen8 to trigger samples for both my film work and music—it’s compact and does exactly what I need. 

“The MicroTrack 24/96 rarely leaves my side—I capture all of my field recordings and the occasional bit of Foley with it. I then transfer the samples onto my G5, load them into my software of choice and get busy editing. Our studio is on the set of feature films with the MicroTrack capturing location recordings that we’ll use as sound effects when the film is in post-production.

“On stage I keep it light with a MacBook Core 2 Duo, X-Session MIDI controller (for controlling my DJ application) and a FireWire Audiophile. Both virtual decks of my DJ application are routed to outputs one and two on the Audiophile, and the monitor output is routed to three and four, which I have assigned to the headphone output. The X-Session sits perfectly on my laptop, just below the keys. I configure my setup so that I deal with as few cables as possible, in as little space as necessary. All of my M-Audio gear helps me to achieve this.”

White on M-Audio software: “Virtually all of my sound design is created with the Wizoo WizooVerb W5. There isn’t a film I’ve worked on since the W5 landed that I haven’t used it in. It’s super powerful and ultra intuitive—definitely one of the top convolution reverbs available.

“Anytime I’m allowed to go crazy, especially with paranormal, science fiction or horror films, the first plug-in I’m eager to use is iZotope’s Trash. I think creative distortion is one of the more overlooked sound effects in film today, and Trash seems to transcend the distortion tradition.  It adds a unique madness to a scene, making the film truly stand out. Trash can also be found in nearly all of my music arrangements. A lot of times, just slapping Trash on my beats makes them knock harder than compression.”

What he is proud of: “I’m young enough in the field of sound design that I’m not jaded, so each film I finish is a huge accomplishment. The films I’m most proud of are those in which the director has given me enough creative license to conceptualize a unique soundscape—not just for each scene, but the movie as a whole. However, the real moment of pride comes from that first screening, watching my sound consume the audience and take them for a ride!

“Musically, I think my biggest accomplishment has been DJing. A decade later, there’s still nothing for me like making a crowd dance, especially when the tracks I dropped were made by my friends (and myself, of course).”

His songwriting and production process: “For me, technology is everything. Every sound I create is made with a computer and every sound I capture is recorded digitally. I don’t even write my notes on paper anymore—my MacBook does it all.

“My process for making music is less structured, but I almost always start with a beat. I hear beats in my head all day long. Some people sing in the shower, but I beatbox! When I towel off, I go straight for my MicroTrack and record it before I forget it. Later on in the studio, I play it back to refresh my memory, then start laying it down.

“My sound design process always starts in a creative meeting with the film’s director. This establishes their overall vision and helps me get a sense of how they think and operate. Next comes the spotting session, where we watch the film and discuss how sound can help, add to or ‘sell’ a scene.  Because I’m generally the sole sound designer/sound editor on a film, I essentially get to create the entire soundtrack—hard effects, special effects, Foley and atmospheres.” Why M-Audio? “About three or four years ago when the X-Sessions were released, I snagged one, opened my laptop and set it down right on top of the track pad, just below the keys. It fit perfectly, the skies parted and the heavens illuminated my keyboard—I was finally free from the DJ mixer. The X-Session completely changed the way I set up and performed—mixing hasn’t been the same since!”