Texas Chapter Board Spotlight | Paul "Pappy" Middleton
What do you do in the music industry?
I am a recording studio designer, builder, owner, producer/engineer. http://palmyrastudios.com
I am also a songwriter, performer/musician,…and concert FOH engineer. Last year, I finished 30 years of mixing concert sound for Ms. Bonnie Raitt, along with Jackson Browne, Bruce Hornsby, Sean Colvin, David Lindley, Chris Isaak, Julio Iglesias, Kenny G, John Prine, and so many more of my heroes. I am now mixing tours for Jim Messina.
What does being a member of The Recording Academy mean to you?
I never realized how important being a member was, until I joined the Recording Academy (about 20 years ago at the suggestion of a then very young friend and engineer named Chris Bell). Chris also convinced me to run for the Texas Chapter Board of Governors. I won my seat and have proudly served since the late 90's. Being a Board Member and Recording Academy Member has been the proudest part of my life in music. Being a proud father and equally proud member of the Academy has allowed me to work with and mentor young musical talents. I love working with GRAMMY U students. The Academy is like a large musical family, where smiles, and "fuzzy feelings" abound.
Tell us about the musical influences and inspirations that helped to shape your career.
My dad was a piano player/guitar picker back in the mid 1930's. In the mid 1950's, I would sneak into the living room where dad would play piano sometimes after dinner. He would play this one blues riff that he liked and I loved,…and I finally asked him, "what is that, Pop?" He said, "it's the "boogie" son,…don't let it get ya!!" It was too late. When my oldest brother left for college (Austin-UT) in 1958, he took my dad's 1936 Kalamazoo (Gibson) guitar with him. While playing folk music outside the girl's dorm late one night, he met his soon to be wife Madeleine. I thought it then and still do to this day how wonderful it is that music can open up hearts and souls and bring people together. Clark and Madeleine are still married and still making music. The final 'BigThing" for me was my senior year of high school….1964. I was doing my Latin homework listening to KFJZ AM radio (Ft. Worth) when The Beatles were played for the 1st time in America. For everyone my age, it was the day that everything changed, Forever!
If you weren’t working in the music industry, what would you be doing?
If I wasn't in the music industry, I had planned to be a teacher and a coach.
What projects are you currently working on?
I am currently working with a very young family band out of Arkansas, called "Brothers Beckham". The guitar player is 15 years old and their style is 1960's "Cream" and Jimmy Hendricks. So much fun. I'm too blessed and so lucky.