September 6, 2018

‘Virtue Signal’ by Steve Stroud

Virtue Signal by Steve Stroud

I finally got around to writing and recording a new original track which is titled ‘Virtue Signal’ by Steve Stroud.  It’s my first new solo song since I finished my solo album ‘Lavalamp‘ in 2017.

I had a piano riff in my head and based it around that. It was also a good opportunity to put to use a couple of new plugins I’d recently purchased.







The Waves Abbey Road Reel ADT is a brilliant replica of the Automatic double tracker the Beatles first used in the 60’s. Great for analogue sounding chorus or flange effects.
The Universal Audio Galaxy tape echo is a psychedelic sounding old school tape echo / reverb unit that adds a bit of retro other-worldliness to your delays.

Anyway, I expereimented and wrote and recorded the song in a few hours one morning recently. It’s now on itunes, spotify etc, but I’ve put the link to my Bandcamp page below if you’s like a listen.

Let me know what you think?

You can hear the results here and don’t forget to get in touch here if you want me to work with you on your next project. CONTACT

Written by Steve Stroud ©2018
All vocals and instruments – Steve Stroud
Produced, Mixed and Mastered by Steve Stroud
Recorded and Produced at Big Cloud Productions in Liverpool


September 6, 2018

‘Our Whingy Gayle’ by David Barker

Our Whingy Gayle

Had a great time recording the original song ‘Our Whingy Gayle’ by David Barker , the Jack Russell music recording artist this month. He brought the wine and his music all the way from France to come and record here, so he’s a little bit like Dionysus in my book.

Dave wanted a 6o’s vibe on the song and after tracking his vocals and a guide guitar, he left me to my own devices to add the other instruments. I’m pleased to say David is very happy with the results and is planing to release it as a single on vinyl.

Dave also mentioned he wants to come back later on in the year to record a full original album with me, so that’s something to look forward to.

You can hear the results here and don’t forget to get in touch here if you want me to work with you on your next project. CONTACT

Written by David Barker ©2018
Lead Vocals – David Barker
Backing vocals and all instruments – Steve Stroud
Produced, Mixed and Mastered by Steve Stroud
Recorded and Produced at Big Cloud Productions in Liverpool

July 6, 2018

‘These Blues Now’ Album by Franki Doot

Franki Doot - These Blues Now

On the 9th of May, Franki traveled from Dorset to Big Cloud in Liverpool to start tracking for his third Album project to be produced here.

We’d previously collaborated on his albums ‘Still Runs‘ and ‘Tastes‘ and Franki was so happy with the productions, he wanted to produce another album here in a similar way.

Franki wanted to experiment with a slightly different way of working on this album. In the past, he would come in with the songs written and with concrete ideas about instrumentation, arrangement and the overall sound and feel of each track.

This time, Franki wanted to write the songs as normal, but then hand the raw tracks over to me where I would be free to add whatever instruments I felt would work for each track with no direction or input from Franki. I’d then Mix and let him hear and offer suggestions before the final Mastering.
This was all Franki’s idea and at first I thought it was a) very brave and b) unusual.

Most musicians like to micro manage the production process. I’ve been guilty of this myself when working with other producers. It’s just the way it always is.  Especially when you’re working on songs they’ve written themselves. To hand them over to a producer and basically say “Do whatever you want” is just unheard of.

I was excited by the challenge, but I have to admit I was concerned about the possibility of spending months working on the album only for the artist to ultimately say “Nah..that’s not what I had in mind at all!”
So we developed some ground rules, Franki didn’t want any input, because he wanted it to go in a different direction to what he would normally do, but I was to try and make decisions that I thought he would like going off our previous work together. He would get a final Veto if anything turned up that he hated.

I set to work adding instruments to his basic acoustic demos on May 10th and by June 22nd I was ready to share 8 rough mixes with him via the Dropbox.

Needless to say, I was a bit nervous, but thankfully Franki came back to say he loved them all and was really delighted with the results. (And Breathe…)
Franki imputed a few minor mixing tweaks here and there and a few days later I was ready to master.

By 4th July, the Masters were all done and approved by Franki and the project is (for me) now complete.

You can hear the results here and don’t forget to get in touch if you want me to work on your next project. CONTACT

All Songs written by Franki Doot ©OAM 2018
Lead vocals on all songs and acoustic guitar on ‘Don’t Give Up on Love’ – Frankie Doot
All other instruments and backing vocals – Steve Stroud.
Additional vocals on ‘These Blues’ – Sarah Jeory & Harvey Stroud.

Recorded / Produced / Mixed / Mastered – Steve Stroud at Big Cloud Productions 2018


December 2, 2017

‘Tastes’ Album by Franki Doot

'Tastes' Album by Franki Doot

Early in September 2017, we started work on the ‘Tastes’ Album by Franki Doot when Franki made the long trek from Dorset to Liverpool to begin recording tracks for his latest original album.

We’d previously collaborated on his last album ‘Frankie Doot Still Runs‘ back in 2016.

On  the last album, I’d only collaborated on 7 of the 12 songs he recorded and another studio in Dorset Mixed and Mastered the album.

This time, Franki wanted to do all the work here at Big Cloud Productions, so this time I’d be collaborating on all 12 tracks and also Mixing and Mastering the finished Album.

So in September we had an initial tracking session, where Franki recorded guitar tracks and vocals and we discussed what else was needed for each track.

After Franki had recorded his parts I set to work adding Drums, Bass, Guitars, Piano, Keys, Strings, Brass etc.

I would then send Franki progress mixes via the Dropbox and once he gave me the thumbs up , I’d move on the next track until we had 12 basic mixes done.

Franki came back to Liverpool for an additional Tracking session in October 2017 where he added harmony vocals, extra percussion, some extra guitar, piano, mandolin, bass etc.

Then all that was left to do was edit and mix the whole album. I’d send Franki all the edited, eq’d and mixed tracks and once he was perfectly happy with the Mix I’d done in Steinberg Cubase 9.5  I moved the Mixes over to my Mastering rig in Steinberg Wavelab 9.5 .

My basic Mastering Chain consists of UAD Ampex Mastering Tape, SSL Bus compressor, Liner EQ, UAD Massive Passive Mastering EQ and a final Limiter.

Franki was very pleased with the finished Album, he sent me this message.

“Many, many thanks for helping me to bring my songs alive.  You’re a great musician/producer.  I really appreciate the time you’ve spent on it and I’m proud of the results.”

You can hear the results here and don’t forget to get in touch if you want me to work on your next project. CONTACT

All Songs written by Franki Doot ©OAM 2017

Lead & Backing Vocals / Acoustic Guitars and Percussion / Additional Electric Guitars, Bass and Piano – Frankie Doot
All Other Instruments – Steve Stroud

Recorded / Produced / Mixed / Mastered – Steve Stroud at Big Cloud Productions

June 27, 2017

New Songs by Tim O’Neill 

Tim O Neill

Had the pleasure of welcoming Tim O’Neill back to the studio recently to work on two brand new compositions.

Tim arrived with two new songs he wanted to record and played them to me acoustically before telling me what kind of instrumentation he wanted on the tracks.

This is usually how it works with Tim, he’ll come round and strum a song out and I’ll make a note of the chord structure and what tempo he wants. (There’s usually a bit of metronome action at this point to drill down the bpm).

We’ll then record his acoustic guitar part and a guide vocal and Tim will then tell me what else he wants on the track. He’ll give me examples of drum beats or sounds he likes, examples of guitar sounds he wants me to try and capture and some basic instrumentation ideas. (“Drums, bass, hammond, strings on the chorus etc”).

Then I’ll lay down the extra parts and any ideas I’ve had and do a rough mix for him. He’ll then make some notes about what he likes and doesn’t like then come back in to do a finished vocal, and backing vocal parts and then I’ll add any of his thoughts and do a final mix before Mastering.

A nice touch was Tim brought his daughter Aniela to the session to add some backing vocals on Krokodil.

So, here’s the two new tracks. See what you think? Let us know.

If you would like to work at Big Cloud Productions on one of your songs, get in touch TODAY


This was Tim’s 12th song recorded here at Big Cloud Productions. Have a listen to all the others below.

June 26, 2017

‘Franki Doot Still Runs’ Album by Franki Doot

Franki Doot

I’ve recently completed work on an original album for Liverpool born, but Dorset based singer songwriter Franki Doot. ‘Franki Doot Still Runs’ is a great collection of original, intelligent and thoughtful tracks.

I’ve worked on seven original songs so far for Franki up here in Liverpool and he’s also working on some other totally seperate tracks with another producer Martin and his studio down in Dorset Active Music .

I’ve just added links to the seven songs I’ve worked on and produced below.

It’s been quite a different way of working for me as rather than do everything in house myself as I usually do, it’s been far more of a collaboration this time.

Franki has been recording his basic tracks (Vocals and guide guitar) in Dorset with Martin, who then sends those tracks to me. Franki then gives me a brief of what’s needed in terms of feel and instrumentation which I then complete for him up here in Liverpool.

For example, for the first song ‘Run Down the Road’ I received a click track, a guide acoustic guitar and a lead vocal.

I then added Drums, Percussion, Bass Guitar, Hammond Organ, Acoustic guitar, Slide Guitar, Lead Guitar, Electric Rhythm Guitar and Backing Vocals.

Below is the mix and master I’ve done here in Liverpool for Franki. (There may also be other mixes done in Dorset out there, but below is the Big Cloud Productions mix.)

It’s been a really interesting and enjoyable project and I’ve recently heard from Franki that he wants to do another album with me in a similar way. I’m looking forward to it.

That’s the great thing about Big Cloud Productions. Whether you need me to collaborate with another producer or you need me to do everything myself, anything’s possible!

Get in touch today if you want me to work on your next project. CONTACT

All Songs written by Franki Doot 2016 © Oak Apple Music
Lead Vocals / Acoustic Guitar by Franki Doot (Recorded at Active Music in Dorset)
All other Instruments and Vocals by Steve Stroud (Recorded at Big Cloud Productions in Liverpool)
Mixed and Mastered by Steve Stroud / Big Cloud Productions.

June 26, 2017

Cover Versions by Jukebox Duo

Jukebox Duo

Mark and Andy (aka Jukebox Duo), two brothers from Huyton, Liverpool have formed a new wedding duo.

Really nice lads and talented too. They wanted a couple of new cover version tracks for the Jukebox Duo website.

They popped round with some backing tracks and I recorded their guitars and vocals for them. I then mixed, mastered and delivered the finished versions via the Dropbox.

If you’re a singer, duo or band who needs new content for your website or page, get in touch as we can do everything from live acoustic sessions, to backing track sessions such as this to full live band records. Whatever you need. We can help.

Please, feel free to get in touch today for a free no obligation quote. Contact


March 23, 2017

Let’s Stay Together by Vanilla

Let's Stay Together

Great live session tonight with Vanilla duo.

Julie & Nick are a duo from Liverpool who came to record Let’s Stay together by Al Green. They sounded fantastic and were really lovely to work with.

Nicks an amazing guitarist and instrumentalist and Julie is an actress/singer with a voice to die for. They’re both really nice and funny guys too. Hope to work with them again really soon.

This was just a simple live recording session. Nick used my Gibson J45 acoustic guitar which I mic’d up with an AKG 414 which then went into a Golden age 73 pre.

Julie sang beautifully into my Neumann TLM 103 condensor mic which also went into a Golden age 73 pre.  I used UAD 1176 compressors and Pultec Eq’s on their channels. I also used a UAD EMT 140 plate reverb on the voice and guitar.

As it was such a simple session with no overdubs, I offered them the great rate of £50 a song total ( including mixing and mastering!)

I’d be happy to offer the same price to anyone who wants to do something similar.

If you’d like to record here like Nick and Julie did, get in touch TODAY.


February 9, 2017

Album Production: Lavalamp Album by Steve Stroud

Lavalamp Album

I’ve just completed work on the Steve Stroud (ie: Moi) solo Lavalamp Album .

It’s a really nice feeling to complete an Album as a songwriter.  I’ve released a few over the years that I did not produce, but I think it’s even more involved and rewarding to complete one that you’ve wrote, performed, recorded, edited, mixed and mastered yourself.

For the Lavalamp Album, I’ve been writing and recording a song as a basic demo and then just releasing it instantly on Bandcamp/Soundcloud as soon as it was ready-ish. I started that process with the first Basecamp demo about 12 months ago.

Now, a year later, When all eight tracks were done, I went back to the original Cubase sessions and fixed anything obviously annoying, remixed and eq’d the lot of them from scratch.

Then once mixed, I took all of the eight songs into Steinberg Wavelab 9 to Master the finished files.

Mastering the new Steve Stroud album ‘Lavalamp’ #mastering #wavelab #uad #waves #lavalamp #studiolife #stevestroud #liverpoolmusic

A photo posted by Big Cloud Productions (@bigcloudproductions) on

Once done, I uploaded to Bandcamp to sell and sent them all off for digital distribution, so the record will also be available on Spotify, iTunes and Amazon etc.

Then I exhaled noisily and had a cup of tea. Have a listen!

You can download and buy the album here if you are so moved.

Thanks to everyone who’s encouraged and supported me in producing this new album. As you can hopefully tell, a fair amount of work has gone into making it.
Please do have a listen, download if you wish, buy it if you must, but most importantly, enjoy it you big, serious meatbag. X

If you’d like to record your original songs here with me in the same way, get in touch! CONTACT

January 18, 2017

Song Production: ‘ I Want To Give You So Much Joy ‘ by Steve Stroud

Lavalamp Album

Another song for my solo album Lavalamp has been recorded and produced in the last few weeks.

This one’s called ‘ I Want To Give you So Much Joy ‘. After this, there is one final song to be completed for the record, which is already written and being recorded right now.

For the Lavalamp record, I’ve been writing and recording a song and then just releasing it instantly on Bandcamp/Soundcloud.

When all eight tracks are done (This is number seven), I’ll probably give them all a spruce and a polish, tweak a few things and release the whole thing on itunes and spotify.

I hope you like it. 🙂


Feels festive in here today #cubase #kemper #gap73 #studiolife #liverpoolmusic #liverpoolproducer #liverpoolstudio

A photo posted by Big Cloud Productions (@bigcloudproductions) on

You can hear and buy the album as it stands here

I Want To Give You So Much Joy

Acoustic Guitar: Gibson J-45.
Nylon String Guitar: Harveys’ Yamaha Guitaele.
Electric Guitar: Gibson 335 and Fender Strat.
Bass Guitar: Gibson EB14.
Synths: Arturia Mini Moog V and Hammond B3.
Drums and Percussion: Fxpansion BFD3.
Beats: Groove Agent.
Strings and Brass: HALion Symphonic Orchestra.
Vocals: Neumann TLM 103 through PRE 73 MK II.

Written by Steve Stroud © 2016
All instruments and vocals by Steve Stroud.

Engineered, Produced and Mastered by Steve Stroud using Steinberg Cubase Pro 9 & Wavelab 9 at Big Cloud Productions in January 2017.

If you’d like to record your original songs here with me, get in touch today CONTACT