Patience. Something Engineer Matt Hayes Learned Recording Yelawolf’s “Love Story”

[R]ecording engineer Matt Hayes recently discussed the creative process behind the making of Yelawolf’s new album Love Story. The record, which was issued via Eminem’s Shady Records imprint, debuted at #2 on iTunes’ Top 100 chart.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4BamsjqtHWo
Yelawolf at the listening event for his new album Love Story.

Hayes, who graduated from SAE in Miami in 2006, recorded and mixed most of the release in Nashville and Atlanta. Sonically, Love Story is a divergence from Yelawolf’s previous releases. On this album, the Gadsden, Alabama native combines a number of genres employing live instruments.

And Yelawolf stretches out his vocal chords this time around.

Matt Hayes
Recording engineer Matt Hayes

“He does a lot more singing on the album than he has on any of his other releases,” said Hayes, who is a faculty member at the SAE Institute in Atlanta. Hayes is an official member of Yelawolf’s production team. Yelawolf purposely took almost two years to complete

Yelawolf purposely took almost two years to complete Love Story, which he said was his hardest album to record.

Hayes, who recorded Love Story with engineer Leland Elliot, admitted he was a little anxious during the recording process.

“While I wanted to keep the album moving forward, Yelawolf and his camp wanted to take time to digest everything and live with the songs for a while before taking the next step,” engineer Matt Hayes said of the experience. “In hindsight, that was a very smart idea, and the quality of the album backs up the wisdom of their approach.”

Hayes, who obtained his B.B.A in 2004, began teaching audio engineering at his alma mater in Atlanta in 2009. In 2011, he became a formal member of Yelawolf’s production team.

“The most valuable aspect of SAE’s curriculum is the hands-on time that students get in the studios at each campus,” says Hayes. “It’s impossible to teach audio technology solely on the basis of theory. Solid practical instruction and experience is essential, and students get plenty of that at SAE.”