Electronic Musician

BJ Burton

As a member of several punk and indie rock bands, producer, songwriter and mix engineer BJ Burton began recording bands during his teenage years. More intrigued by a career in production than a life on the road, he went to engineering school and branched into voiceover work while interning at a music studio. As a member of North Carolina-based indie pop band The Love Language, Burton moved into the producer’s chair for albums Libraries and Ruby Red, propelling him towards an astonishing five-time Grammy award-winning vocation.

Despite purchasing a studio in Minneapolis, he currently resides in LA and advocates an experimental, push/pull approach to musicmaking. The somewhat reclusive Burton has worked extensively with Bon Iver’s Justin Vernon and Sylvan Esso, most notably on respective studio albums 22, A Million and What Now. His fast-growing reputation would later lead to collaborations with industry titans such as Chance the Rapper, Miley Cirus, Kanye West and Eminem – the latter sparked by songwriting sessions with renowned producer Mike WiLL Made-It.

Did you always have an interest in how music was made from a production viewpoint?

My parents were really into The Beatles and my grandfather loved bluegrass, but I rebelled. I was into punk and metal – the loudest, craziest shit I could listen to. I was trying to make music myself, so was trying to read as much as I could about my favourite records and had an interested in how producers or engineers like Rick Rubin and Rich Costey were doing it. But this was when you only had AOL or instant messenger, so it was hard to really find out what was really going on.

What did the word ‘producer’ mean to you?

I’m 33 now but it’s only been over the

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