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How much will this cost?

This depends on the length and complexity of the arrangement, the number of times the piece is revised and if any live musicians are required. Contact me to discuss the scope of your project and I'll be happy to give you a price. For general information though, a "CD ready" arrangement runs around $500.00. Cruel Tea charges a basic studio rate of $50.00 CDN/hr.

What is Artist development?

Basically, Cruel Tea is there as a service to assist those in charge of helping an artist’s career by working to come up with a “direction” musically. Many singers and/or writers may have a great sound or song but are very unclear as to how to develop the style that will realize their greatest potential.

On some occasions, we have been approached by an artist directly and have taken on the project to get them to the next level – i.e. gigs, management, label, and publisher. Often, the artist funds this. However, sometimes, Cruel Tea Productions will step in to help the artist. Obviously, there needs to be compelling circumstances for this to happen but, it does!

Can you help me get a record deal?

This is a difficult question to answer. On the one hand, it’s easy to say no. There are many producers who offer promises to clients of shopping them to “important contacts” or, being heard by “the right people”. More often than not these promises are, shall we say, less than real. On the other hand, Cruel Tea does work with a few labels and really does have the “ear” of these people. What that means is, if you have something really special, we will discuss the circumstances to decide if you wish to have your work heard by these people. This does not mean we can get you a deal. It does mean the opportunity exists.

What should I look for in a producer?

Advanced musicianship

That is, years of experience in different musical settings. They should be able to play many instruments. Have experience in composition and arranging. Have a lot of experience writing and collaborating on songs. Have a strong “feel” for song structure. Understand vocal technique and vocal issues.


A producer has to have a deep desire to make great recordings. They need to be flexible and try new things if an approach is not working. Technical difficulties become an opportunity for new options. Must be willing to go down an unexplored route.


They should know gear, computers and software. (did we mention obsessed?) They should understand digital and analog issues and be familiar with mixing and mastering.

People skills

The most important is that the producer can step into the artists’ dreams. The producer should get along well with both technical types and artistic types. And, they should be upbeat, positive and be able to deal with sensitive egos.

Organizational skills

They should have a plan, work methodically toward the finish line and stay on budget. Also know when it’s worth going over budget. They can make decisions without being a dictator. Knows when a song is done!

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