James Russell is the creator of Heliport Studios, one of Australia’s Premier recording studios. James has been making music since 1998 and producing and mixing professionally for the last decade. In the last 7 Years since he has been the Studio Director at Heliport James has developed a mix style and sound that has become a Heliport trademark. With his extensive knowledge of branding, the music industry and use of SSL equipment, James’ mixes have become synonymous with rich sonics and a thick analogue weight, achieved when summing through an SSL Console or Sigma mix box. James has developed his mixing style from working and learning from some of the great producers and his Hybrid style of plug in and hardware style mixing give his mixes a unique sound that only a pro knows how to achieve.
An accomplished musician in his own right and a multi instrumentalist, James spends just as much time writing for clients as he does mixing. With a highly tuned ear for music production and a flair for musical drama James is a composer, arranger and technician with a long list of credits as a producer, songwriter and engineer.
Studying Creative Music at the SAE (Melbourne) under the tutelage Ollie Olsen, from Max Q (with Michael Hutchence of INXS fame) in the 90’s, he developed a passion for producing electronic dance music, and learnt the foundations of creative music production, learning techniques such as composition, sampling, and synthesis, and cutting his teeth using old hardware patch synths, and tape and rudimentary 8 bit sampling right through to all the modern day techniques in mixing and recording.
Throughout the late 90’s James was heavily involved in Melbourne’s music scene, both as a budding musician/ Producer and promoter. During this time he worked with the likes of Jeff Buckley, The Prodigy, Crystal Method and Boy George, and also did stints as a roadie and sound tech for U2 and the Elton John/ Billy Joel tours in Melbourne.
He has turned his hand to many styles of music as a producer, in collborations and as a solo artist.
In his career James has worked with many great pillars of the Australian music industry including John Butler (John Butler Trio), Mike Howlett (Flock of Seagulls), John Hudson (Producer Tina Turner and Bay City Rollers), Troy Brady (Amity Affliction), Kalju Tonoma(Producer Temper Trap, The Living End), Wade Keirghan (Wolf and Cub) and Tijuana Cartel.
James’ producer and engineering credits are numerous, and he has been responsible for recording dreams of many independent, unearthed and up and coming acts, Mantra, Megan and the Achilles, Ayla Scanlan, The Arch Dukes, Wayward Smith, Red on Red, Dracula Palms, The Velvets, Boy in the Moon, The Vagrant City Scandal, Minor Elite and The Tea Society to name just a few.
James’ Role at Heliport Studios has seen the studio grow over recent years, and the construction of a new studio of Heliport’s (Studio B) that provides a whole new raft of services, from satellite (online) mixing and mastering to film and TV capabilities that will, no doubt cement Heliport Studios as the new force on Australian music industry’s recording scene and a one stop shop for bands, providing a full service from writing and demoing, to full recording and production design, graphics, branding and promotional support.