“Just Like Klockwork”

In Human Interest, Non-fiction on July 29, 2011 at 7:25 pm

To Arden resident Marc Klock, music means a lot.

Indeed, music is a valuable resource in this world of unrelenting turmoil and commotion, perhaps able to define feelings and thoughts with more elegance than could words in any language.  From the power it holds to touch hearts and capture human emotion, be it of jovial or solemn variety, to its ability to call to mind memories we have perhaps carefully filed away, to its captivating aptitude for defining the joy and pain of the times in which we live—whatever it is about music that makes it such an inexorable fascination for all of us, Klock has made it his business.

“I used to sing in choir at church when I was very young,” he recalls.  “When I was seven, I heard the electric guitar for the first time.  I think they were playing ‘Day Tripper’ by the Beatles.  And that was it.  I haven’t put the axe down ever since.” However, today he isn’t just singing in the church choir.  41 year-old Marc Klock owns and operates his own recording facility called “Fusion Studio Recording”—a 1,000 square-foot facility, which he designed himself and built separate from his home on his acreage in Arden—a project you might call a “new and improved” successor of his first 8-track analog recording studio, which he opened in Santa Barbara, back in 1992.  It wouldn’t be a far cry to say that Klock is, indeed, a priceless example of dreams come true, of visions translated into realities.  But it has been far from a cakewalk; as Klock will tell you, there is a long trail of hard work and determination he has left behind him to get to where he is now.

“I have been a musician since grade school,” he relates.  “In high school, I had a pretty sweet PA system.  My band and I would record through a console that was set up in my parents’ kitchen, direct to cassette tapes.” After high school, Klock left the kitchen and availed himself of the avenues of musical opportunity open to him, beginning with on-the-job experience; over the years, he has delved into countless bands, projects, and experiences that would mold, shape, and define his musical endowments into a finely honed vocation.

Klock cites an example:

“I was a 14 year-old freshman in high school.  My music instructor at the time invited me to a jam night at Rocky’s, a hip nightclub in downtown Santa Barbara.  I begged my dad to sneak me in, since it was 21 and over.  He had the great idea of eating dinner at the restaurant, then entering the bar through the side door.  When the band started their set, they announced a special guest would be showing up for the second set.  It was Joe Walsh!  After he got onstage, I was invited up to play also.  We played three songs together.  Then, on the last tune we played, I ripped a killer solo and got a standing ovation.  When they announced my age, I got thrown out.”

Aside from experience picked up on the road, however, Klock also pursued education as a way to supplement his skills.  After years of touring and recording, he caught wind of a recording-engineering program being offered by the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA).  When he heard he would have the opportunity to learn from high-level producers and engineers, he jumped at the chance and signed up.  “I got to work in some of the finest facilities in LA,” he recalls.  “I attended for about two years and ever since I have been working as a producer, engineer, and musician.”

Of the four independent CD’s released by Klock and recorded at his very own Fusion Studio, he has sold his music in over 25 countries around the world.  But Klock cites his last independent release, “Tentacle Dreams,” a CD featuring several of his own original songs, as being one of his favorite projects.  “Every player on this album [“Tentacle Dreams”] is incredible,” states Klock, speaking of musicians who share the stage with the likes of Jeff Beck, Eddie Van Halen, Rod Stewart, Jackson Brown, Steve Morse, Dream Theatre, Edger Winter, Ronnie Montrose, and Stevie Nicks to name just a few.  “Working with some of the world’s finest musicians is plenty to keep me motivated,” he adds.

Renowned bass veteran Phil Chen, who has performed and recorded with everyone from Jackson Brown and B.B. King to Jeff Beck and Van Halen, acknowledges that in the microcosmic world of studio recording, Marc Klock is a kind of “superman” of producing and engineering.

“He is a real unsung hero,” states Chen.  “Anyone who listens to his music can hear his genius and skill, his passionate expression through his unique guitar artistry.” Chen also fondly recalls recording on Klock’s last album: “Marc has many things to offer the world of music.  His persistence and determination for the best in sound quality has been a result of his hard work and experimentation to achieve the best, and he has done it!”

But these days, Klock acknowledges there is more to his motivation than opportunity.  “My wife, Angel, and I are working on 15 years of marriage this April,” he says.  “You have to have the support of your partner to become a success.” Too, he fondly mentions his progeny, 16 year-old son T.J., to whom he has passed the musical torch, and who serves as Head Chair for the Percussion Section of the Colville High Symphonic Band, plays with the pep band, and actively plays with his rock band “Crash Landing.”

Klock has also been very deliberate in reaching out to his community.  “I built the studio here so that anyone in the world can get away from the city and record a professional project in peace and comfort.  This is definitely the most comfortable studio I have ever worked in.  As far as my community here, I run affordable specials, donate time for special events and also the high school.  And folks don’t have to travel to Seattle, Los Angeles, or Nashville to record a truly professional product.” Klock, along with a handful of his musician cohorts, also has plans for the near future to institute the Stevens County Music Society, a non-profit organization dedicated to providing Stevens County with live music where it may be lacking.  “There are a lot of great musicians here,” says Klock.  “There are a lot of high school bands, and some older musicians who are still actively involved in playing, but have no real outlet.  We need a venue!”

Indeed, Marc Klock and his musical empire is an impressive and appreciated addition to our community here in Colville.  He hopes to continue recording and producing full-time, and benefiting others by transmitting his expertise to those who are interested in learning.  And so far, things have run smoothly, he agrees, “just like klockwork!”

{Published, Statesman-Examiner 2010}

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