Bonzai Beat with Chris Lord-Alge

In this episode, five-time Grammy award-winning producer, engineer, mixer and musician Chris Lord-Alge shares insights into his career in the ever-changing music business.

Five-time Grammy award-winning producer/engineer/mixer/musician Chris Lord-Alge (aka CLA) started as an assistant engineer at H&L Studios in Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey, where he worked on projects with The Stylistics, The Softones, Van McCoy and others. He soon moved on to become a staff engineer for Sugarhill Records working on The Sugarhill Gang’s “Rapper’s Delight” and Grandmaster Flash’s “The Message,” “White Lines” and others.

He gained notoriety in the early 80s for his engineering and mixing on James Brown’s “Living in America,” included on the Rocky IV soundtrack; James Brown’s “Gravity” album; Joe Cocker’s “Unchain My Heart” album; and Tina Turner’s “Foreign Affair” album.

CLA also mixed and added production to many Singles and 12" remixes, including Madonna’s “La Isla Bonita,” The Rolling Stones’ “Too Much Blood,” Bruce Springsteen’s “Dancing in the Dark,” “Cover Me” and “Born in the U.S.A.,” The Cars “Hello Again” and U2’s “3 Sunrises.”

In 1988, he moved operations to Los Angeles and worked at A&M Studios, Skip Saylor, The Grey Room, Larrabee, Summa Sound and many years at Image Recording. The projects continued: Green Day (“Nimrod,” “American Idiot” and “21st Century Breakdown”), Eric Clapton, Phil Collins, Joe Cocker, Rob Zombie, The Replacements, John Prine, Melissa Etheridge, Elton John, Jewel, Duran Duran, B.B King, The Black Crowes, Sheryl Crow, Pink, Courtney Love, Alanis Morrisette, Sum 41, U2 and many others.

In early 2009, CLA and Waves Audio began working together and released the Chris Lord-Alge Artist Signature Collection of audio plug-ins. In 2011, he started working with Mix with the Masters and giving one-week seminars at Studios La Fabrique in Southern France — an exclusive learning experience for music producers and engineers who want to gain first-hand studio experience and learn from the best.

In 2012, he worked with Slate Digital and created a drum sample library and the Audio Legend series of videos. In 2017, CLA started his relationship with Avantone Pro and Black Lion Audio. They released the CLA 10 and CLA 10a speaker re-creations of the widely popular NS-10 studio monitor, which has become the biggest selling passive studio monitor in the world.

Mr. Bonzai is an award-winning photographer, author and interviewer. He has written more than 1,000 articles for outlets in the United States, Europe and Asia. He has published numerous books, including Studio Life (Mix, 1984), Hal Blaine and The Wrecking Crew (Mix, 1992), The Sound of Money (Focal, 2000), Faces of Music (Cengage, 2006), Music Smarts (Berklee Press, 2009) and John Lennon’s Tooth (BookBaby, 2012). His photos and articles have appeared in Rolling Stone, The New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Billboard, Mix, EQ, Keyboard, Daily Variety, Hollywood Reporter, Los Angeles Magazine, Disney Channel Magazine, Sound & Recording and Relix, among others.