Set 32 | Ian Salazar
In the age of the Internet and the availability of a multiplicity of streaming platforms, the power of recording and releasing an album has been placed back into the hands of the artist. While the cost of buying studio time has remained high, there has been a resurgence of the DIY ethic and many musicians have made the step toward acquiring the skills needed to record and produce their own records. Ian Salazar is one of those musicians who have capitalized on the landscape of the still-newly-forming face of the music industry. Ian was born and raised in Arlington, Texas, and started playing music at the age of seven. Growing up with a father who worked as a music producer and audio engineer, Ian got the bug for recording early on. In 2016, he scored an internship at Redwood Recording Studios in Denton, and began taking the knowledge he picked up there back to his home recording studio in Arlington, The Acid Pad, where he’s had the opportunity to work with several North Texas artists such as Scarlett Cimillo, Cure for Paranoia, The Bralettes, Hall Johnson, Acid Carousel (in which he plays bass), and Majik Taylor (a band he started after high school). “I’m still learning,” says Ian, “I’m trying to always progress and get better. I try to reach out to people. I’ll e-mail my favorite producers like ‘here are my mixes, please tell me how I suck.’” If there is one thing that comes through clearly in speaking with Ian, it’s that he is not interested in settling or becoming complacent. He’s constantly pushing himself to improve and refine his skills. “I just want to know what I’m doing wrong and what I’m doing right from people that I respect, and sometimes they write back and say, ‘You’re on your way, this sounds good, do this or try doing this instead because it sounds like you’re doing this and you shouldn’t do this.’”
This approach and versatility isn’t something Ian holds exclusively to engineering. At present, he is involved in four separate projects: Acid Carousel, Majik Taylor, Gift of Dance, and a solo project. He is also well-versed on a variety of instruments including guitar, bass, drums, and the saxophone. All of this he attributes to having grown up in the suburbs and the ever-pervasive need to create outlets to express his creativity. “I think that’s a product of growing up in an environment where no one was really creative and open, and it forced me to be more creative and do more things.” In each band, Ian has the opportunity to flex different muscles and pursue the different styles of music he is interested in. “I like that sort of intricate, complicated, you know weird music and that’s Majik,” says Ian, “And then I love simple, four-chord folk songs and that’s my solo stuff, you know? It’s nice to kind of scratch every itch I have musically.” Currently, Ian is working on a full-length solo album with the working title, Coarticulations, a word he discovered while sitting in on a friend’s Childhood Development Psychology class at UT Austin. “The definition is two sounds smeared together… and a lot of the songs on the record I think have to do with two sounds smeared together whether or not that means like two people trying to talk at the same time or two things happening at once, I mean it’s open to interpretation.” The release of the album hasn’t been set in stone, but Ian is hoping to wrap it up sometime this summer or fall. In the meantime, you can check out Ian’s latest releases, a cover of Blake Mill’s, “Hey Lover”, as well as his debut EP titled Songs About Love n’ Shit Vol. 2 - both of which were consecutively released on Valentine’s Day this year and the last (a tradition he just might keep up with).
You can follow Ian and keep up with all of his various projects and upcoming shows at the links below.