Grammy week has arrived! We’ve made cheat sheets on all the best producer nominees, so you can impress the guests at your Grammy party. Read up on Greg Kurstin below, then check out the full series here.
#1. He’s trained as a jazz musician
You may know Greg for his pop production and songwriting work on Adele’s “Hello,” Ellie Goulding’s “Delirium,” and Kelly Clarkson’s “Stronger,” but the pop writer-producer’s musical roots are actually in jazz. He credits his jazz upbringing with helping him improvise unusual chord progressions and melodies, often giving him ideas that are out of the box in today’s pop world.
#2. When recording, his studio is all-systems-go
When in songwriting mode, Greg makes sure his tools are within arm’s reach and ready to be used. In his studio, keyboards are plugged in, drumset mic’ed, and guitars patched, so they’re ready to go when inspiration hits. As a big Logic X user, he makes use of his custom Logic X templates to not waste a single minute in the studio.
#3. He wrote his first published song before he hit puberty
Kurstin started learning music as a toddler. At age 5, he picked up the piano and progressed to playing the guitar at 11. By age 12, he had formed his first band and co-wrote his first published song.
#4. Greg’s a jack of all trades
Producers and songwriters aren’t always musicians, but Kurstin — a multi-instrumentalist — is all three. Kurstin played bass, guitars, piano and keyboard on Adele’s “Hello,” and he engineered, produced, and played all the instruments on Lilly Allen’s “It’s Not Me It’s You.