Making it in any industry is super tough, especially the music industry where you are hot one second and gone the next. Add reality into that of some sorts, and the pressure on you is even higher than you would expect. However, there are a select few that find what works for them inside the industry, thrive on it, and continue to make themselves relevant and fantastic in what they do throughout it all. A good example of that is producer Donnie Klang, who is one half of the producing team at The Loft Sound Studio, located right outside New York City in Long Island.
In the past decade or so, reality television has giving audiences a first hand look into what it takes to develop the next music superstar. Shows like “American Idol”, “The X Factor” and “The Voice” have all played pivotal roles in taking a regular person and turning them into a chart topping, Grammy winning performer who becomes a legend in the industry they simply once aspired to be apart of. But what happens when you take someone who has already been through the ringer of this type of program and take their experience into their own hands and utilize it on other up and coming performers? That’s where you will find Donnie Klang and Matthew LaPorte, who have developed The Loft Sound Studio.
Located ten minutes away from me in Plainview on Long Island, Donnie & Matthew have built Long Island’s premiere music artist development factory. If you are unfamiliar with Donnie he rose to fame on MTV’s hit show “Making The Band” a couple of years ago, most notably being signed by Diddy as a solo artist as opposed to the rest of the men there who were being groomed to be the next big group in R&B and hip-hop. When your mentor is none other than Sean Combs you pretty much have the rundown as to what it takes to find that next X factor of a person or persons. Since their opening, they have developed some big new talent including MarissaAnn who was a finalist on season 3 of “The Voice” and Madison Beer, who landed a deal with the biggest artist in the game- Justin Bieber. I sat down with Donnie & Matthew to discuss more.
Hey guys! So tell me a little more about how the process of The Loft Sound Studio started?
We opened The Loft Sound Studio in 2011 with the intention of giving young aspiring singers a place where they can come develop not only their vocals in a fun innovative way- but also help train and create recording artists that are industry ready.
Donnie, do you think your experience on Making The Band helped in the process of developing the studio itself?
My experience on Making The Band was one in a million. It was really the last of true artist development that labels used to put into their artist. It’s been amazing being able to take everything I learned and the network I made and help new artists pursue their careers.
What was the biggest takeaway that Diddy taught you during the MTB experience?
The biggest thing I learned from working with Puff was that this is truly a business. I learned the ins and outs of every aspect of developing, growing, marketing, and exploding a brand.
What made you want to transition out of music and focus solely on producing at this point in your career?
When things slowed down for me- I realized from a business aspect I wanted to have something in place that can help sustain my life moving forward so that when I’m ready to work on my music again I won’t have to worry about the financial side of it. I’ll be able to just whole heartedly put my focus on creating.
Can you please let our readers know who both you and Matt have been developing and any success stories with the brand?
We helped to develop Madison Beer who secured a deal with Justin Bieber and Scooter Braun and she eventually signed to Island / Def Jam. We’ve gotten multiple teenagers onto reality music competition shows including X Factor and The Voice. Most recently we assembled a 5 member pop / R&B girl group that we are currently marketing and developing and will be showcasing to record labels in 2015. They are called The Janes. We also have been working with 17 year old soulful powerhouse vocalist MarissaAnn from season 3 of The Voice.
Seeing as we are all Long Islanders here, do you think LI gets the musical respect that it deserves?
I think Long Island is a hidden gem. We are of course in the shadow of the greatest city in the world- but it also gives us amazing opportunities less than an hour drive away. A ton of clients from Long Island that come to us used to have to travel all the way into NYC to get the type of training and services we offer- so we pride ourselves in being a little slice of the big city in Long Island.
Now that 2014 is ending, what are your ultimate hopes for The Loft Sound Studio as we enter into 2015?
Everything seems to have been culminating to this upcoming year. Everything I learned while being an artist in the industry- along with how much our business and network has grown- there will be multiple label deals signed this upcoming year for a bunch of our artists!
Learn more about Loft Sound Studio by logging on to their official site