Logic & Synthesis Instructor
David is a composer, producer, author and educator. He has been working with Pyramind Training, teaching ground campus classes in Logic, Sound Design, Synthesis, and other music related subjects since 2000. From 2004 to 2007 he was Pyramind Studios’ lead composer and creative director and now brings his Logic expertise to Pyramind’s online training programs.
David is perhaps best known for his online avatar, sflogicninja, with a following of over 28,000 subscribers and over 3 million views on YouTube. Since sflogicninja’s humble beginnings in 2006, he has become a globally recognized certified trainer and expert for all matters relating to Apple’s Logic Studio.
As a composer David’s compositions have been heard coming from televisions, computers, and other screens since 1996. He has written for advertising, television, independent movies, video games, and just about any other medium in need of music. He has contributed to a diverse range of projects by industry leading developers like Double Fine, Sega, LucasArts, Microsoft, THQ, Activision, and ImaginEngine, among others.
David the producer is deeply embedded in the Bay Area music scene. His latest work can be heard on albums by Lila Rose, Metal Mother, Artemis, and Mortar and Pestle among others.
“Anybody who just takes their personal time to reach out and help the masses for the love of it, as David has done in his youtube Logic Audio trainings, is unique. That’s how I discovered him! He is a superb teacher. He not only knows what he is talking about, but his unassuming, friendly and musician type- cool approach, makes learning effective and like you’re just hanging with a friend!” - Jordan Rudess
Game Audio 301 Instructor
Best known for his original soundtrack to the Academy Award-nominated film “Super Size Me.”, is also a noted expert in the field of sound for games with an impressive twenty plus year career. Steve has worked extensively with Nickelodeon Digital, where his groundbreaking work in interactive entertainment has garnered him both Webby and BDA awards. Horowitz also has a Grammy Award in recognition of his engineering work on the multi-artist release, “True Life Blues: The Songs of Bill Monroe [Sugar Hill].” Best Bluegrass Album” (1996).
Mr. Horowitz started his career in the early1990’s, and has literally hundreds of game titles under his belt for top flight companies including, Nickelodeon, MTV, SONY, SEGA, Crystal Dynamics, Rocket Science, Living Books, Broderbund, LeapFrog, Zephyr Games, Yahoo and many others.
Hometown: London, UK
An avid and obsessive musician for most of his life, Paul started his music career at the age of 12 with a classical guitar given to him by his grandmother. Paul then strung it up with steel strings, affixed multiple heavy metal stickers upon it and began to thrash. He hasn’t let up since.
After performing and recording with several bands in the UK, Paul moved to San Francisco in 2001. Since then he has worked in numerous studios throughout the Bay Area including: Fantasy Studios, Polarity Post Production, Outpost Studios, Broken Radio, and Loudville specializing in audio engineering and production, post-production, game-audio, foley, and voice-over work for film, TV and advertising.
Paul has worked on sessions for Guitar Hero: Van Halen, Aqua Teen Hunger Force with members of Chickenfoot (Michael Anthony, Chad Smith, and Joe Satriani), as well as recording projects for Keith Urban, Tony Lindsay of Santana, Dave Goelz of the Muppets, actor Peter Krause of Six Feet Under, and solo-engineered the new Tender Mercies album which includes several members of the Counting Crows.
In addition to the Pro Tools Expert certification, Paul has gained the Pro Tools Operator certification in Music and Post. When he’s not passing on his knowledge in Pro Tools and Game Audio in classes at Pyramind, Paul lends his skills and love of music to the control room at Loudville Studios in Sausalito as Senior Audio Engineer. Integrating both video and audio components for network TV as well as national advertising, work at Loudville includes recording voice-over for such popular shows as Undercover Boss; and National Geographic shows: Unlikely Animal Friends; Shark Men; Can it be Built?, and more.
Game Audio 201 Instructor
Scott has been producing designing and teaching interactive audio for multimedia since 2005 when he first pioneered the audio curriculum for the graduate Web/New Media Department (WNM) at Academy Of Art University (AAU). He is now teaching classes in Game Audio in a number of schools throughout the area. He possesses an active, engaging, and informative teaching style that breaks down the complexity and really helps students understand the concepts and practices behind sound for interactive media, not just the specifics of the applications.
In addition to his teaching, Scott continues to do professional interactive sound design work nationally and internationally. As an artist, he is significantly interested in the creation and performance of compelling sounds across a broad spectrum of contemporary, improvised, and experimental music. He has studied composition and improvisation at California Institute Of The Arts with Roscoe Mitchell, Wadada Leo Smith, Morton Subotnick, David Rosenboom, and Frederic Rzewski. He has performed at numerous international festivals and venues for experimental music on piano and electronics, and has recently designed instruments and performance interfaces using sensors and micro-controllers.
Steffen Franz (aka “Stand Out Selector”)
Hometown: New York, NY
Steffen has been in the music business for almost 30 years and brings his many years of experience to his current positions. For the past 18 years, Steffen has run his own independent record label, Positive Sound Massive Recordings, releasing over 20 different albums and singles over the past decade and a half. He has also produced dozens of albums for other people and has deep knowledge in both the production and label management aspects of the music business.
In addition to running PSM for the past 18 years, Steffen founded a physical and digital distribution and marketing company called Independent Distribution Collective in 2004 that currently manages a catalog of over 600 titles in almost 400 independent stores (and a few major chains) across the US. Steffen also developed “InstantDistro” a turnkey marketing and promotion system that now includes Print, Radio, Retail and Web promotions as well as music licensing, artist management and booking as well.
Steffen loves all aspects of the music business and teaches Music Business 101, 110, and 301 at Pyramind, an audio production school in San Francisco. In 2013, Steffen was named President of Tarpan Records, an independent record label founded by multi-platinum, Grammy winner, Narada Michael Walden, based in San Rafael, CA.
Corey Denis has been pioneering digital music marketing for 15 years, utilizing everything from early ListServs & phpbb forums to social networks and MMORPGs and video games. Her first job in the music industry was with What Are Records? where she built and leveraged online street teams and podcasts to increase sales and connect with fan bases for Frank Black, Figurine, Stephen Lynch, Maceo Parker, The Samples, Innocence Mission, Glenn Tilbrook, Tim Finn, Tony Furtado and March Records. By 2003, Denis was Director of Digital Marketing and A&R, facilitating one of the first five direct deals between Apple iTunes and an indie label.
In 2005, she moved to San Francisco to work with the Independent Online Distribution Alliance, where she was part of a team who built a promotional distribution platform allowing its member base of thousands of blogs, podcasts and online media outlets to access pre-cleared MP3s and marketing assets. In addition, she produced the non-profit Musician & Promoter Workshop Series in San Francisco, assisting local musicians with digital transitions.
In 2009, Denis started her own Digital Marketing & Social Media consultancy, serving such clients as SoundExchange, Michael Tilson Thomas, Ning, Rdio, and Vertebrae Productions. In 2011, she aligned with Dick Huey and Music PR Toolshed to create and manage Toolshed’s Social Media Strategy department, overseeing digital music strategy & marketing for such indie artists as MNDR, Kate Bush, Cat Power, Mother Mother, Ani DiFranco, Melissa Ferrick, Martin Sexton, Redd Kross, Big Scary and Wax Tailor. Denis is now focused on Artist Education, guiding music students through the twists and turns of marketing and social media intricacies. She has one patent, two cats & eight iPods.
Ableton Live Instructor
Zaak’s current projects and expertise focus on bass heavy, soundscaped, narrative driven composition for live performance. In addition to being an electronic music producer, Zaak is a painter and fire dance performer. His background in performance and visual art make Zaak a talented facilitator and visionary for collaborative creation, which is the focus of his most current project The Zenotope Collective. Zenotope is a group of performance art collaborators that combine live electronic music, multimedia projections, dance theater, and circus arts for a multisensory musical experience.
Originally from Philadelphia, Zaak’s relationship with music started with his love of punk rock. He played guitar for various punk bands as a teenager and continued his aesthetic evolution from there. He first began producing electronic music while living in Kyoto, Japan years later. Influenced heavily by the Japanese noise music scene, he focused primarily on experimental composition. After moving to New York City in 2008, Zaak began collaborating with a variety of movement artists including contortionists and Butoh dancers. Zaak then moved to the west coast to further pursue electronic music production, where upon completion of Pyramind’s Core Program Zaak wrote and produced Zenotope’s first album titled Miasma. Currently he and the rest of the Collective are developing a unique 3 dimensional light/sound/movement based structure for live performance of the Miasma album. His second album is currently underway due in early 2013.
Liam Shy is a dynamic and passionate audiophile, dedicated to the world of sound his entire life. His work includes being a Music Producer, DJ, Sound Designer, Live Sound Engineer, Audio Instructor and advocate for the electronic music community. Liam graduated from the Pyramind in 2009 specializing in Music Production, Sound Design, Mixing and Mastering. He has worked professionally as a Sound Designer and Composer including work on titles for the Wii and nationally broadcasted television commercials.
In addition Liam has run several successful music projects, most notably DISSØLV, a live EDM band specializing in dubstep and psytrance combined with classical and tribal themes. The band featured Liam as the vocalist, guitarist and live electronic manipulator – alongside violinist Valentin Santana, keyboardist Lauren Keys and Drummer Zeta Ceti. The band has opened for Infected Mushroom on several occasions including performing at the esteemed Warfield Theatre (2010) and Fillmore Auditorium (2011). http://www.dissolv.net
Music Theory & Piano
Ryan Rey is a composer, guitarist, and teacher from the San Francisco Bay Area. He writes music for chamber ensembles, symphonic band, orchestra, rock groups, videogames, ringtones, and film. At the age of 5, Ryan’s first instrument was a bright orange and neon green plastic toy guitar and his first recording setup was a Playschool cassette player with microphone combo. Using this toy tape recorder, he captured the sound of his screaming voice and feedback noises. This was his first exploration into composition. Nowadays, classical chamber music, electronic loops, heavy metal, and a mix of other genres influence his music.
In 2009, Ryan was the inaugural recipient of the Glenn Glasow Fellowship in Music Composition which commissioned “Shaped By A Burr Grinder” for woodwind quintet. He has also been commissioned by Composers, Inc., Guerrilla Composers Guild, Left Coast Chamber Ensemble Intersection Workshop, and REDSHIFT Ensemble. His compositions have been performed by Rodrigo Cortes (baritone), Guy Livingston (piano), Stephan Poetzsch (violin), REDSHIFT Ensemble, as well as numerous ensembles from CSUEB that include: Jazz Orchestra, Percussion Ensemble, Symphonic Band, and Trombone Ensemble. Feature film soundtracks include: All About Dad (2009), Liquor Store Cactus (2009), and documentary Corner Stores (2013). Other film productions include work for: CSUEB, Dirty Shoe Crew, Hemogoblin Teradactle, and Hewlett-Packard. His music has been performed in France, Mexico, South Korea, Vietnam, and throughout the United States.
Ryan holds a B.A. in Music Composition and is currently completing an M.A. in Music Composition from CSU, East Bay. He currently teaches Music Theory and Piano at Pyramind, and Recording Arts, Music Theory, Electronic Music, and Guitar at Fusion Academy. As well, Ryan is an Artistic Co-director for Composers, Inc. and also plays guitar (sometimes trombone and backup vocals) in the chiptune/folk/doom/chamber music band, The Mineral Kingdom.
Taylor Elsasser committed his life to music at the very young age of 12, starting out as a budding bass player trying to sound like Eddie Van halen in the humble town of Sparta, New Jersey. After moving to California at the age of 15, he met his business partner and drummer, Tim head, and started a progressive death metal band. Tim and Taylor were signed to Jonny Gunn productions as studio artists and eventually opened their own studio called “Quantum Studios”. They both attended Pyramind to further their knowledge of mixing and mastering, but under the tutelage of Brian Trifon (Trifonic) Taylor was driven to pursue the art of synthesis and to learn how to make banging Dubstep.
Taylor’s study of synthesis took him deep into the world of Native instruments and since he has worked on numerous projects including designing many of the sounds heard on his current collaborator and Pyramind alumni Luke Estes “Sugarbeat’s” release “Cherry Bomb”. Taylor’s passion lies in fusing glitch hop with Dubstep in aggressive mash-up’s of gritty bangers and granular robot sounds. He is also working on numerous online tutorials for Reaktor players and ensembles, which has proven his ability to follow in the footsteps of his mentor, Brian Trifon.