Matt Donner
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Matt Donner

Matt Donner holds a Masters in Music from NYU and has served as Engineer, Producer, Educator and now Chief academic/ Operating Officer at Pyramind, training hundreds of future music producers yearly.

San Francisco, California, United States
Member since August 21, 2012
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I am a(n):

Entrepreneur, Educator, Administrator, Producer, Online Course Developer/ Administrator

If you are an entrepreneur, why?

I want to change the world.

My favorite startups:

Right now, #1 is Vidyard!

What's most frustrating and rewarding about entrepreneurship/innovation?

Its all-consuming. My wife always argues that I have two - Pyramind and her :). Its a passion and like any/ all passions, it consumes your thoughts, actions, mindset and lifestyle paradigm.

For me, this is about serving my favorite artform and making the world a better (sounding) place to be. Music has changed so much and in that change, some things have gotten lost that need to be re-discovered for Music's sake. Its why I do what I do.

Honestly, I couldn't do anything else!

What's the No. 1 mistake entrepreneurs make?

I'd be guessing here. I've made plenty over the years and I think that's how you learn sometimes. We don't always get it right the first time :).

Perhaps the biggest mistake is holding on to a bad idea for too long and not recognizing when its not working. Right along side the inability to re-invent yourself in the face of adversity.

What are the top three lessons you've learned as an entrepreneur?

Same as my mistakes!

The Marines have two expressions I use often here:

- The six P's (prior planning prevents piss-poor performance :)).
- Adapt and Overcome.

Full bio

Matt Donner has been playing music his whole life. He played throughout college while earning a Bachelor’s degree in quantitative Business Analysis but left to cut his Producer and Engineering chops in NYC. He found himself working for high-profile studios like Sound on Sound (Diddy, Anita Baker) and Greene Street (Run DMC and Public Enemy) right after earning his Masters in Music and Music Technology at NYU. He went on to perform for various TV studios and John Cale (Velvet Underground) that included 3 feature film scores using Pro Tools version 1.0 and a two-day live event to open the Andy Warhol Museum.

After signing his band to an indy record deal, his cross-country tour brought him to SF where the drummer exploded – how typical.

Matt quickly found himself in high demand in the studio scene as a rare experienced Pro Tools user and became an award-winning Regional Technical Director for Guitar Center, and the Pro Tools Support Lead for the Cutting Edge Audio Group where he served as studio designer, installer and trainer for the likes of Joe Satriani, Metallica, Benny Reitveld (Santana and the SF Jazz Fest) as well as hundreds of private studios including Wally World (Walter A., N’Sync, Whitney Houston, Celine Dion). A crowning achievement during this period was to install, troubleshoot, deliver and support 50 Pro Tools workstations for the legendary Skywalker Sound during production of Star Wars Episode 1.

In January 2000, he and Greg Gordon began working together exclusively at Pyramind where they began running the hybrid Production/ Training businesses successfully. Matt has served the company as Chief Engineer, Senior Producer/ Composer, Chief Technical Officer, Vice-President and now Chief Academic Officer. He has mixed/mastered a hundred or so records (including his own released in 2002) as well as publishing several magazine articles. Matt has also written two texts on Pro Tools (Pro Tools Overdrive V 6.9 and V7 for Thomson Press).