My profile for inclusion in:

"Top 101 Industry Experts" for Cambridge Who's Who.

 

TOP 101 INDUSTRY EXPERTS

MUSIC COMPOSITION AND PRODUCTION

 

 

DEAN DRENNAN
Owner, Composer, Producer
FireCloud Productions
2611 N.E. 113th Street
Vancouver, WA 98686 USA
ddrennan@pacifier.com
http://www.firecloudproductions.com
http://www.cdbaby.corn

 

For more than 40 years, Dean Drennan has been doing everything himself when it comes to music, from composition to production. He is the owner, composer and producer for his own recording studio, FireCloud Productions, which produces cross-genre and multi-cultural music. With a talent for mostly instrumental music, he is able to paint a picture and tell a story with each song.

Mr. Drennan feels that he was given the gift of music and wants to give it back to others through his inspirational songs. A former preacher, he had worked in ministerial services for many years, an experience that has set the tone for many of his CDs, including the 16th album he just released entitled, "Place of Promise." His desire is to show others something new and different. "I try to make people think," says Mr. Drennan. "If I can [positively affect] somebody, then I have accomplished what I set out to do." He enourages different interpretations of his music from people and enjoys hearing what each person gets out of his projects. 

Everything he does is original; he never performs covers. While he realizes that many bands may choose to do so, he chooses to make his own music. It is understood that each new and upcoming band may be affected by the styles and writings of other artists, but the key lies in learning from these differences to make original music. 

He has seen many facets of the music industry and has also seen it change over the years. He has been in the music business longer than most and even had an online presence before many did as well. As he says, "This industry takes a lot of patience; If It Is not your only job, you still need to treat it as such," and recommends that artists set aside time each day to dedicate to their art. Dedication and thinking outside of the box are key factors to success without frustration. An artist can review their work again and again and never feel satisfied, but that should never stop them from releasing It.

Mr. Drennan received an associate degree in computer science from the Heald Institute of Technology, located in California. He began his career in his field through his combined interest in music and computers, and attributes his success to his honesty. 

 


 

Interview for inclusion in:

 "Top 101 Industry Experts" for Cambridge Who's Who.

 

TOP 101 INDUSTRY EXPERTS

MUSIC COMPOSITION AND PRODUCTION

CONVERSATION WITH DEAN DRENNAN

 

 

CAMBRIDGE WHO'S WHO: On what topics do you consider yourself to be an expert? 

DEAN DRENNAN:  I'm like a general contractor for the music field; I do everything. Most [artists] don't do all of it by themselves, but there is nothing that I don't do.

What characteristics help to separate you from your competitors?  I have been doing this for a longer period of time than most. I try to relay some kind of message with my works.

What motivates you?  Divine inspiration. [My ability to create music] is a gift and I am just giving it back. It was formed out of vision and took me a while to understand. It took some time to put all the pieces together and then, one day, it was like a light bulb experience.

What lessons have you learned as a professional in your field for the past 42 years? [If you listen to my different compositions] from a technical standpoint, I think you would hear the influences of a lot of the bands and styles that I listened to at the time [I created my work]. I learned from those styles. Every band has done that.

What short-term and long-term career goals are you currently pursuing?   I just go year to year. Right now, I am in the middle of revamping my studio, [an action] which has been a long time in coming. It's an ongoing process and I am always busy. I am vastly trying to make my world a whole lot bigger. There's a lot of studying and trial and error.

How do you plan to achieve these goals?   I am almost finished with fixing my studio, which has been a learning experience.

 

What is the most difficult obstacle or challenge you have faced In pursuit of your goals?    In the early years, I was not the same person I am now. I was originally a "hippie" and, while I would not promote that lifestyle, I did learn a lot from that experience and used it [to create my music].

What is the most significant issue facing your profession today?  I am always battling with copyright Issues; I keep saying that DRM (digital rights management) doesn't cut it. I am very concerned about how our administration is trying to meter this. 

Did you ever consider pursuing a different career path or another profession? How did you end up working in your current field?  Yes, I have been many things already and I may bring some of them back into what I'm doing in the near future. I will always carry music with me. I will be starting a ministry from the ground up soon; I started off as a preacher years ago and will integrate my music into it.

What are some questions that an individual interested in your field should ask veteran musicians?   If they are trying to do what I'm doing, in any phase of it, there are many things they need to ask. A lot of it will be about the physical stuff, "How do I do x, y or z?" What I would be doing is consulting and telling them all the ways they can do things. I don't want to put them in a box because that is what frustrated me. I can show them how it works for me.

What do you find to be the most rewarding aspect of your profession? After finishing so many projects, it's interesting to look at the result and see the evolution of it. It's fascinating to me because [the music industry] is always growing and expanding. [Musical pieces] are not set in stone, they can still evolve. I want to give somebody a positive outlook against all of the negative junk we get day in and day out.

What advice can you offer fellow members or others aspiring to work in your industry?  You have to have a lot of patience; don't quit. I know how busy people get, but you have to treat this as if it is your only job. You have to learn how to carve out certain hours and keep at it because it won't always click. Knowing when the album is completed is tough; sometimes, you just have to let it go. You can't be so critical of your own work that you don't release it.

Who have been your mentors or people who have greatly influenced You?   I was an original Rolling Stones fan because I identified with blues/jazz music. When they first started, they were playing R&B music. Their original story is quite interesting; they did 200 demos and were refused. The only reason they exist is because Brian Jones was best friends with George Harrison. George got a booking for the Stones and they owe it to him.

What changes have you observed in your industry/field since you started?  The Web has made a huge impact on the music industry. The ability to do what I do is available for anyone with the time and the resources; itís amazing. You can build a complete professional studio for under $10,000. The availability of the technology has made it easier to do that.

How do you see these changes affecting the future of your industry  The software and the hardware have come of age to the point that it is far easier and you have choices that you didnít have before.