If there is one word that sums up Ronan Chris Murphy’s musical career, it is diversity. Ranging from work with YouTube sensation Tay Zonday to over a dozen albums with progressive rock legends King Crimson, from Norwegian art metal pioneers Ulver to pop superstar Jamie Walters or iconic Greek vocalist Alexia (Vassiliou), Ronan’s work spans the globe both figuratively and literally.
He got his start playing in the early Washington, DC punk scene in a band called Freak Baby (which was also Dave Grohl’s first band who joined after Murphy left the band) and he went on to play in the 80’s scene that would later be dubbed grunge or alternative. He shared the stage with the likes of The Flaming Lips, Henry Rollins, Death Angel, Die Kreuzen, Iron Cross, Dinosuar Jr., All and GWAR.
By the beginning of the 90s, Ronan made the shift full time to production and engineering, working in Boston with a strong emphasis on hip-hop, electronic music and Americana, including studio work with the great Martin Sexton. While in Boston he also studied synthesis part-time at the Berklee College of Music, where he was the head of the Berklee student Digital Audio Group. A few years later he was invited to be a producer/engineer in residence at the Banff Centre for the Arts in Canada, focusing on jazz, classical and experimental music. While there he worked with artists such as Chucho Valdes y Groupo Irakere, Los Muñequitos de Matanzas Norma Winstone, Kenny Wheeler, Joan Labarbara, The Banff Festival Orchestra and Kaija Saariaho. During this time Ronan was also one of the producers of the International Computer Music conference.
After leaving Banff, Ronan relocated to Seattle where he worked as an Audio Lead for the Microsoft Network, working on the team that helped pioneer synchronized audio, MIDI and animation on the Internet. After a year in the corporate world, he went back to music production and engineering and found himself immersed in the world of progressive rock and bouncing between the U.S. and England for several years. During this time Ronan worked on over a dozen albums with King Crimson, as well as albums with the likes of Steve Morse, Terry Bozzio, Steve Stevens, Nels Cline, Tony Levin and The California Guitar Trio, and working on the crew of the G3 tour with Robert Fripp Steve Vai and Joe Satriani (as a tech for Robert Fripp).
Having musical interests far beyond “prog,” he continues to work with artists from all around the globe in virtually all styles of music. Some highlights include producing “Rustic Living for Urbanites” for Pete Teo, which is widely considered one of the most important albums in the Malaysian singer/songwriter scene and spent 3 months in the top 10, recording tracks for legendary Greek singer Alexia, which reached #1 on the Greek jazz charts, and Icelandic art/pop band Soundspell, which was a top 20 album in Iceland. Ronan produces, mixes and masters for clients from around the globe at his Veneto West studio in Santa Monica, California, in addition to traveling to work with various artists around the world on a regular basis.
In addition to producing and engineering full time, Ronan has always been an avid educator. In 2003 he launched Recording Boot Camp®, which helped pioneer the concept of the “one week recording school,” presenting workshops around the U.S. and Europe, including the “Italian Villa Boot Camp” in a villa-based studio in North Italy. The business presents in-person Recording Boot Camps and Mixing Boot Camps, as well online courses and consulting.
He has been a lecturer or panelist at SXSW (South by Southwest), NXNW (North by Northwest), The Action Poetry Festival, the International Organ Festival, The Berklee College of Music, The TAXI Road Rally, The Musicians Institute, 2NMC, The Society of Composers and Lyricists, the International Computer Music Conference and many others.
In 2009, Ronan launched Ronan’s Recording Show, one of the first online shows about recording, which over the years has garnered millions of views.
Ronan’s consulting business has a wide range of international clients ranging from hobbyists in home studios, to major label artists with pro studios, as well as houses of worship, academic institutions, and pro audio manufacturers. Recordingbootcamp.com