Brionne Olsen 2009-11-14

Ladies and gentlemen, may I present to you The Most Interesting Imaging Director in the world – Brionne Olsen!

Representing imaging from South Africa, Brionne impressed us and readers of this blog from all over the world. After learning from the pros and getting the opportunity to have an exclusive learning session with David Konsky, he came back and earned the imaging crown in our 2012 Christmas Contest.

A great end to a great year in imaging and now we’re having our winner talking about switching formats, session and plugin settings of his Gary Promo some his upcoming projects in 2013.

1. 2012 must have been a pretty exciting year for you. What has changed in the last year?

Honestly, the biggest change must be the switch between formatted station. Going from AC to CHR also going from being the station producer to a show producer. It was a transition to get use to as I was a station producer for the better part of 4 years and understood the brand & the audience pretty well.

2.You changed your format from AC to CHR. How has your production routine has changed?

Even a senior station producer compiles and produces the larger part of a station’s on air imaging and promos, the advantage is the time frame, I got to finish everything. So I could plan ahead 2-3 weeks before the time and therefore the work got spread even throughout the given time frame.

Being a show producer and being part of an on air team meant that along with planning and doing prep for a show, there’s also the live on going element of a live radio show. To be able to respond immediately on request or be able to produce a piece of content on the spot with the production quality still intact. Even though I physically work less hours, the work is twice as intense because it’s all about the listener and understanding the audience we cater for. CHR production is much harder, at the limit and trendy. So in that instance, I had to rethink my production techniques and that took some time to get used to. At first, one would think that I should be thinking “out of the box”. The day, I realized that there is in fact no “box”, that was the day my approach to producing for a CHR station/radio show changed.

3. Recently you’ve made the switch to Pro Tools. How do you like it? Do you still use Cubase? Do you have a favourite DAW?

I am still on Pro Tools 10 and continue to work in this DAW. It’s a lot of fun, especially FX Plugin Automation. I literally love that feature and is very easy to apply in Pro Tools. BUT in my view Pro Tools is not the be all and end all. For me it is very similar to Cubase and the only difference I could pick up was the layout and where everything is. Other than that both programs are even Stevens.

I don’t have a favorite DAW. I enjoy learning new environments and learning from new software – that in itself is an enjoyable challenge to learn something new. It’s quite refreshing starting off with something new. A Producer/Engineer should always challenge himself, learn something new and move with the trend because you CAN be left behind.

4. What effects did you use on your winning Gary Promo? (Screenshots?)

Here are some pics from the Gary Promo:

Session arrangement:


Drive Thru FX:


Vocal FX:


Mastering Chain:


5. You came out of nothing and now you’re an award-winning producer. What do you advise all young producers which are trying to get a foot in the scene?

Award winning producer? LOL. Yeah what a great feeling it is. Mostly, because I appreciate that my work is being valued by people from different parts of the world and that I can interconnect with them.

Every aspiring producer need to ask him/herself the question: Am I producing for myself or for my audience? This is radio and you working with people. The listeners are your customers. So are you satisfying their need? Are you educating them? Giving them the content they want? It’s all nice to have a lot sound FX within a given promo or imaging piece, but what are you saying? Is the FX fitting for the message? Think beyond the sweeshes and the zaps and think creatively in terms of the context of the given imaging or promo and you will discover you’ll use less FX to make your promo more effective. Occasionally create kick ass imaging that take the listener to a different place and always remember to believe in yourself. There’s just “one” you in this world. Don’t try to sound like me or David Konsky or James Lawson or Justin Case. These guys are there because their ideas got them the gig, but it’s good to network. Ask questions. Bother someone, like Gilmar from Peru does me every now and then – which I don’t mind and I consider the right thinking. And give yourself slack if you don’t get it right the first time. You are in fact learning at that very moment.  It took Thomas Edison 10000 prototypes to create the light bulb we know today. Those weren’t 10000 mistakes. Just 10000 on how NOT to make a light bulb. It’s how you perceive things that makes the difference.

6. What will the future bring? What can we expect from you in 2013

Pranksta Facebook page cover solidbass

2012 saw the creation and launch of my very own production company called SolidBass Entertainment. Briefly it’s a multi platformed production company  focusing on radio, TV, video/audio streaming, music, music publishing and artist management. The idea came to me when I was 16. I wanted to own my own masters and not sign my music off to big record companies. So I decided, I would have my very own record label. The idea has since evolve.

2013 I will launch my music career as a song writer, producer & singer/rapper. Hopefully I can get that Grammy.

For radio, I hope to go more into being an on air radio personality and produce my own content. I have no idea what I want to do, but I know it goes beyond what many know as radio. So let’s see. 🙂

Thank you very much for the opportunity to partner with Benztown and the awesome blog posts.

Thanks to Brionne for taking the time and answering our questions. Watch out in 2013, I’m sure we will hear more from him.

  1. che says:

    nice work 🙂

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