‘An epic, worldwide community’: Inside PMFC, one of the industry’s fastest growing professional networks

In November 2020, Richard Beck and a couple of friends created Produce, Mix Fix and Conquer (PMFC), a free Facebook community for audio professionals of all styles and skill levels. Three months later and the group is now 1,300-plus members strong and has caught the attention of Grammy winners and engineers for some of the biggest bands on the planet.  

Here, Beck tells Audio Media International editor Daniel Gumbel about everything the group has to offer and its plans for further rapid expansion… 

What is Produce, Mix, Fix and Conquer?
Produce, Mix, Fix and Conquer is an epic, worldwide, super friendly and helpful audio community for producers, mastering engineers, mixers and recording engineers. We have everyone from beginners to world class Grammy winning and multi-platinum selling pros. 

What is its purpose, and how did it come about?
To see as many engineers as possible learn new studio tricks, skills and to get inspired. Cody Reynolds-Shaw (in his last year of training to become a music technology lecturer), Eve-Louise Horne (certified Native Instruments specialist, also runs PEAK MUSIC UK), Mike Lawetto (producer, composer), Dave Dickie (certified Pro Tools operator) and myself work around the clock to support the community, create positive fresh interactive daily content, provide pro engineer live video interviews and live interactive pro engineer Q&As. We’re also massive advocates of seeing more female engineers enter the industry, the percentage is far too low. PMFC moderator Eve has really helped educate our team what changes need to take place to see a big change happen. 

You started in November with three members and now have over 1,300. What has driven this growth?
Knowledge sharing has been vital to our growth. Every day I post different questions. We encourage members to answer how they would approach the topic or scenario in their own way. For example, every pair of human ears have their own interpretation when mastering audio. The process might be similar for each engineer from a technical standpoint when reading LUFS meters, but completely different when making artistic mastering choices using colour. 

I remember watching a Jack Joseph Puig interview with Warren Huart. Jack said: “All art is the synthesis of the art that is prior to it.” I immediately connected with that statement and realised we have an incredible opportunity and duty within this community to support each other, to express and show our own audio art to inspire one another.

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What are the benefits of being a member?
You could have your question answered by one of our active pro engineer members like Bob Katz, Darrell Thorp, Tony Mantz or Steve Baughman amongst dozens of others. It’s like walking into your favourite coffee shop, hanging with your favourite people, drinking your favourite coffee and then your favourite mix engineer walks up to you and goes “that’s a great cup of coffee but have you tried it with this syrup”?

PMFC live pro interviews and Q&As have also now started. I interviewed mastering engineer Maor Appelbaum last week and next week I’m interviewing nine times Grammy winner Darrell Thorp. PMFC community members can ask engineers questions directly to world class engineers which we read out live to ask the engineer. 

Who can join?
Anyone can join, from beginners to seasoned pros.

What are your plans for the group moving forward?
There are many secret plans going off in the background – we love to keep everyone guessing what’s coming next. The fact that we’re doing a live interview and group Q A with Foos recording engineer Darrell Thorp a week or two after Foo Fighters’ Medicine at Midnight is launched completely blew everyone in the community away. We have no idea where this audio rollercoaster is taking us but we want to get as many people around the world involved as possible to enjoy the ride with us.

To join the free community go to https://www.facebook.com/groups/producemixfixandconquer