Why Do You Need An Engineer?

Technology has gotten much more affordable these days. The notion of owning decent recording equipment and being able to use it in the comfort of your own home is no longer an unrealistic one. The question is: do you know how to use it effectively? All of the great studio gear in the world cannot make you sound great and professional alone. An all in one recording solution from the music store or an online retailer is not going to convey your musical message by itself. What’s missing from these scenarios, and what many people forget about when approaching music recording these days, is the engineer. The engineer is a trained professional who knows how to get the most out of that equipment, and out of your performance. That “professional ear” is what can take your project to a whole new sonic level, and help you realize your musical dreams and potential. The “professional ear” at The Beat Box is Doug Nagel.

Doug Nagel has been involved with music for most of his life, beginning with piano lessons at the age of 5. Throughout his school years and beyond, Doug has participated in choirs, talent shows, commercials and stage productions as a performer, arranger, writer, producer and director. Although very happy with doing all of these things, Doug feels most at home behind the mixing board. Whether it’s recording, mixing or mastering a project for a client or for himself, there will always be 110% effort behind the work.

Doug has been involved in computer based recording since his senior year of college at Illinois State University in 1996, and with MIDI composition and sequencing even before that. Formal training consists of time spent at The Recording Workshop in Ohio; where he finished at the top of his class and went on to teach computer based recording at the facility for a while. After coming back to Illinois and working briefly as an intern, Doug decided to follow his dreams and open The Beat Box recording studio in the fall of 1999. Since the studio’s opening, he has had the pleasure of working with many artists and in many different styles of music. Here is a short list of some of the talent that has come to work at The Beat Box over the years:

The Plain White T’s (rock/pop/punk)
Roy Davis, Jr. (house/dance)
Doc Link (hip-hop/rap/house)
The StingRays (oldies/rock)
K.N.Y.T.S. (rap/hip-hop)
Celtic Sounds (Irish folk)
The Incognitos (oldies/rock)
J Fury (rap/hip-hop)
Gallery (rock)
Omega Red (rap/hip-hop)
Tracylyn (country)
Case Closed (rock)
Blackened (hard rock/metal)
Darryl Hayes (hard rock)
Smoke Brown (rap/hip-hop)
Wade Soul (R&B/soul)
Deph D (rap/hip-hop)


These artists and many others have gone on to achieve personal and public success with their music. Doug has had mixes played on several Chicago radio stations and in clubs around the world. Here are what some of clients of The Beat Box have to say:
“To anyone considering working with Doug at The Beat Box, I want to say that I have enjoyed working with him, that he delivered excellent sound on the recordings I've made there, and that he is among the best sound engineers I've worked with in my music career, and that list includes Butch Vig. Keep up the great work, Doug.” - Ben Sage, singer/songwriter


“I’ve been in this business for quite some time constantly searching for an engineer who knew and understood what I wanted.... For over ten years now i've been going to The Beat Box!! Once I went to Doug, I finally became Doc Link to the WORLD! THANKS DOUG!!!”
- Doc Link, producer


“We loved recording BOTH our CDs at The Beat Box and would recommend recording there to any band. Engineer/producer Doug Nagel is a pleasure to work with. He's creative, knowledgeable, knows recording inside-out and can contribute to your project on every level. What makes Doug the best is that he can do everything -- from set up to help with arrangements and he handles all of it smoothly and professionally. Recording with Doug is a relaxed and professional experience, and The Beat Box is the only studio we'd consider recording at.” -
Frank Rowley, The StingRays


“I have been recording @ The Beat Box for about 10 years. THIS IS THE ONLY PLACE I WILL RECORD!!! Doug is the MAN.” -
Omega Red, producer, DJ, emcee


"Doug Nagel of The Beat Box has produced two CD albums for Celtic Sounds.  It was a great experience for the band.  Not only did Doug do a very professional job of production, but the tips and advice he offered were invaluable.  We will be back in his studio shortly for our new CD.  We recommend Doug without reservation." - Dan Ryan, Celtic Sounds
Why do you need an engineer? Why do you need Doug Nagel? Because your project needs to be the best that it can possibly be. Come to The Beat Box and hear, see and feel the difference!