AES Section Meeting Reports

Universidad de los Andes - September 28, 2020

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On this panel, Andrés Castro gave us advice for a lifetime to excel as future audio producers.

He talks about what he considers his very first chance: playing the guitar at church, which helped him loosen in front of an audience. His only certainty concerning music as a career (and that of his family), was that it was an all or anything career pursuit. Finally getting the courage to take music seriously, he finds support within musicians Carlos Agarra, and Gabriel Rondón. Andrés highlights Rondón's harmony teaching method as the most effective.

His greatest source of knowledge was staying close to whomever exercised the profession, practicing, helping all he could, and doing it for free. His professional opportunity came in 1997, at 23 years old: "I used to stowaway into the recording studio", he comments about the production of Tengo Fe, Carlos Vives' number eighth studio album. He lands a major role to produce Fruta Fresca. From then on, he has continued to gain the trust and sympathy he is known for today within the music industry.

Andrés highlights the importance of supporting artists, learning to understand them and being part of their creative process. He fiercely defends his values as a producer: the biggest goal is not to break the project's message so it fits all commercial success expectations, but to defend the project's message so it aims higher than expectations.

"Amazingly talented people exist in every and each musical gender, and it is not measurable by awards". The rush of winning goes away, people forgets and moments of glory vanish; yet "the realest prize a producer will ever win is listening to their work and knowing that it was the best possible result achieved. He then reminds us of all those songs written by 10+ producers, born with the sole purpose of a Grammy and getting viral, never mind them being an artistically mediocre product.

His best songs have come from genuine feelings, stories "that have the power to move your entire soul", and valuing and respecting whomever he works with. Hellas, the two values that helped him forge the personality that has characterized him not only as great producer, but as a person: humility and authenticity.

Thankful to AES and to Andres Castro for this opportunity,
AES Uniandes.

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AES - Audio Engineering Society