Stage Manager and Sound Engineer Clayton Hutson Discusses Secrets, Success and The Music Industry’s Transformation
In the music industry, the rock stars are the ones to get the fame, fortune and fans and then the producers and songwriters get whatever is left. Sound engineers, stage managers and project managers, those people kicking butt behind the scenes, rarely even get an appreciative nod. Unless, that is, you are Clayton Hutson, who, right now, is one of the most sought after stage and project managers in the industry. Clayton owns a business that is focus driven on taking care of every engineering and stage management need imaginable. “And believe me, some of these recording artists have quite the imagination.” Of course Hutson is being modest. He has been the brains and the main technological wizard behind some the music industry’s leading acts; Kid Rock, Shirley Manson, G & R and Pink, to name only a few.
After traveling the globe and being on tour with One Republic, every magazine and social media outlet that you can think of has been clamoring to get Clayton to open up and divulge trade secrets. He laughs and says “I don’t have any secrets to divulge, I am always happy to talk shop with anyone. Of course that is when I can find some time.” Clayton made the shift from mixer to master after this latest recession. “Watching so many of my friends, in every field, take such an enormous hit financially I knew I had to take life a lot more seriously and get out there and put into action all the skills that I had been taking for granted.” Musicians, fans, producers and managers had been badgering Clayton to make a career out of his many talents and even though he knew there were considerable risks he decided to dive right in and he has been swimming ever since.
When asked about some of the skills he uses on tour he humbly replies “I work hard, pay real close attention to every finite detail, yes I am a little OCD but I know that my experiences helps me separate realistic, tangible results from the high energy, often grandiose ideas.” He is known for developing new audio, set design and illumination concepts. “Quite often an artist or producer have great ideas but they don’t know how to articulate them in a way that the entire production can understand. That is where I come in, for some crazy reason I can translate artist speak into a surprising expectation surpassing show.”
When he isn’t on tour or being flown all over the world to offer his technical expertise, Clayton enjoys being at home with his wife and children or reading a good book. When asked what book is on his nightstand he offers up that winning smile and says “Aww shucks, you will laugh. It is the book by Richard Carlson, Don’t Sweat The Small Stuff.” He get’s quiet for a moment then adds “It really is just small stuff.” Learn more: https://www.crunchbase.com/person/clayton-hutson-1a2e