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A magazine from California State University, Chico -- On-line Edition  
Fall 2005
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Mix Master

Jason Spence has traveled the country and worked with famous artists doing what he loves to do—mixing sound. He got his start in the sound business through the Recording Arts program at CSU, Chico.

“A good song or a talented artist is one very small part of a success,” says Spence (BA, Music, Recording Arts option, ’98). “The music industry classes exposed me to the reality of the music ‘business.’ ”

Spence spent several months last year touring the United States and Europe with heavy metal rockers Megadeth. It was his job to make sure the band could hear themselves over the audience and their instruments. He has also toured with country artists Diamond Rio, Kenny Rogers, and Rebecca Lynn Howard. He has mixed sound for several televised events, including the Billboard Music Awards, the MTV Video Music Awards, and the Super Bowl, which included artists such as Kelly Clarkson, the Beastie Boys, Marc Anthony, P. Diddy, and the Black Eyed Peas. He even did a stint at the Republican National Convention.

CSU, Chico’s Music Industry and Technology degree offers options in recording arts and/or the music industry. “We’re the largest program west of Nashville,” says Paul Friedlander, director. “We help reframe the notion of being involved in the music business as not merely getting a job with a big record label, but having the entrepreneurial and business skills to find a niche.”

“The conceptual knowledge I gained at Chico State gave me the confidence to walk up to almost any piece of gear and know that I could handle it,” says Spence.

Spence and his wife, Arlene, live in Nashville, Tennessee. They have an 18-month-old son, Christopher.

To learn more about CSU, Chico’s Music Industry and Technology degree, go to

Lisa Kirk, Public Affairs and Publications