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CreativeLive’s Matt McMonagle: Keeping the Airwaves Clean + Crisp

by Topher Kelly
CreativeLive Staff Profiles, featured

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CreativeLive strives to air excellent content every single day. But we also know that it doesn’t stop with our content; we want to give our audience the chance to experience it with crisp, excellent quality. Today, we talk to Matt McMonagle, the man responsible for making our San Francisco courses sound oh-so-good.

What do you do at CreativeLive?

I’m the lead audio engineer here in our San Francisco studios. Basically, I’m responsible for making sure anyone on screen who needs to be heard are heard, as well as facilitating the behind-the-scenes communication between our tech and production team while we are on air.

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When you were a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up?

When I was a kid I wanted to be an off-road race car driver, a professional punter in the NFL, a professional golfer, and a business owner (my own boss). All of them…at the same time.

Seriously?

Yes.

What do you do for a ‘spirit break’ when you’re feeling a slump at work?

I’ve never had a slump at CreativeLive- this is the best place on earth to work and I love being here all the time. But theoretically, if I had a slump, I’d probably head to the gym and bust out a quick workout- Get that blood flowin’! Yeeeaaah!

Do you have creative hobbies?

I love mixing and mastering music that I believe in. It is my favorite way to combine my pragmatic nature (e.g. organizing a session and creating a balanced, symmetrical mix) with the creative potential of musicians’ vision (introducing depth and interest to enhance the emotion of a song). I like lighting a few candles, turning the lights off, and getting lost in a mix, only stepping out of my zone for hot cocoa or cold beer.

Where do you go to be inspired? 

I find inspiration in books (How to Win Friends and Influence People, Drop Dead Healthy, Born to Run, Mixing With Your Mind), in my personal heroes (Arnold Schwarzenegger, Phil Dunphy, Brian Tracy), and very often from my friends and family around a campfire — hot dog cooked to perfection in one hand, beer brewed so close-enough-to-perfection in the other.

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Matt and the CL team broadcast a wedding. Photo credit: Kenna K

Who is your favorite cL teacher and why?

I loved Ben Greenfield’s class so much that I made it my principal goal of 2014 to achieve ultimate human performance by 2015. I’ve reshaped my diet, exercise routine, and outlook on health and fitness largely based on his course and plan to carry this mindset through the remainder of my long, healthy 100+ year life.

If you were a CreativeLive instructor, what would you teach?

I would teach my interpretation of Dale Carnegie’s system of How to Win Friends and Influence People. It’s not rocket science, but it’s amazing how many people (outside of CreativeLive) don’t know how to get along with others. I think that many people just need the seed of cheer planted in their mind- the realization that life is easier when you are nice to others- that you get what you give — life feels better with a smile.

What’s the strangest/most awesome thing you’ve ever done in a job?

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I was lucky enough to be part of UberLIVE at SXSW with Chase Jarvis and a handful of great CreativeLive employees. My role was to rig up an SUV with audio equipment and then sit in the front seat of said SUV with a mixer in my lap, live mixing interviews with incredibly interesting people for two days. Where else do you get to do that?

You are headed to a deserted island, what 3 things do you take?

I would request the highest rated book on how to survive on a deserted island, a very sturdy multi-tool, and a long lasting fire starting device.

What do you do with CLers outside the office?

I’ve been skydiving, enjoyed music festivals, gone camping and climbed up a waterfall, rung in the new year, had picnics in cemeteries, played kickball, danced many a night away, and even passed out in jail at 4am filing police reports.

Where do you see education going in the future?

I see, support, and subscribe to the DIY educational model.

 

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Topher Kelly

Topher Kelly is a San Francisco-based freelance writer and editor at CreativeLive. Follow Topher on Twitter@Topher_LIVE.