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Remixer's view - Marco Sabiu

An explanation of what it takes to become a record producer.

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The Rapino Brothers are Marco Sabiu and Charlie Mallozzi. (They are not real brothers obviously - 'rapino' is Italian for robber). They have built up a significant and lucrative following among record companies making new versions of original recordings by Take That, Roxette, Sleeper, Suggs, Rozalla, Dubstar among many others.

The need for remixing

"I'm not the one who said remixing was necessary. It's the record companies who want remixes because they want to have their songs played in the clubs. If people like the song in the clubs then they will go and buy the record."

On following record company's instructions

"Sometimes they tell us what kind of style they want. Sometimes they don't tell us anything, they just give us the vocal and we just do what we want. Usually we only keep the vocals and we redo everything, unless it's a band with guitars then maybe we'll keep the riff. It depends. It can be almost like doing a new song."

Remixers versus the original producer

"I listen to the original producer's mix to try to get the kind of vibe that they used so I can avoid doing the same thing. I don't know whether producers like what we do. We always do a radio version of a remix and sometimes the record company will use it as a single. If that version goes into the charts I think the producer should be quite happy because the album will sell better."

Remixing as a way of getting into production

"I can't see any difference between a remix and a production because at the end of the day when you do a remix you start from scratch. The only thing you have is the vocal. To me that is a production."

Technical knowledge

"On that side we are quite lucky because when I was in Italy I worked as a sound engineer, so for me now it's helpful to have that kind of knowledge. If I want a sound I know how to do it. I don't have to ask someone else which would be just wasting time. I think it's quicker and better if you have a good knowledge of the machines you have. We have a Pro Tools system with Logic Audio so we do everything like that."

Acoustic instruments

"We quite like to use live drums and real guitar and bass. When we do that we usually go into a bigger studio because we don't have the space. Then we come back to our place and transfer everything into the Pro Tools and we start editing."

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By David Mellor Tuesday May 13, 2003
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