Photo Credit: Supplied

From a humble garage studio in Joburg to one of the music industry’s top recording facilities in Hollywood—Ciaran De Chaud has proven time and time again that risks, determination and feverish self belief, are everything:


Hollywood, USA (17 April 2024) — South African music producer/engineer, Ciaran De Chaud has made it impressively far in one of the most competitive industries. It’s no easy jump to go from a garage studio to turning into 1416 North La Brea Ave Hollywood for work each day— the historic location of Charlie Chaplins’ 1917 studio that today operates as Henson, one of the music industry’s top recording facilities collaborating with artists like Taylor Swift, John Mayer and The Rolling Stones. But, this young South African has taken the music bull by the horns, and he’s only 27-years-old.

Ciaran started out in a garage studio in Johannesburg, where the task was pitching music for commercials against industry veterans. It was far from an easy path, but thanks to fervent talent and feverish determination, Ciaran landed many pitches against the giants, and slowly started to build a strong reputation as a music producer to know (and later, one who would eventually end up working in Hollywood).

Within a year, Ciaran had produced and engineered music for commercials for a range of major brands. His story-driven work for Gillette, the Nosizwe Commercial, in 2018 even became a cultural phenomenon that earned mention from none-other-than President Cyril Ramaphosa. Considering the young music producer was only in his early twenties at the time, makes this even more of a stand out moment.

As the path of proving himself become more clear, something incredible happened. Ciaran ended up earning a scholarship at Berklee in Boston—the chance of a lifetime to broaden his career horizons. His savings ready, he left for the States in 2019—ready to take on new risks, experiences, and opportunities to share his sounds with the world.

This was a decision that would solidify his talent, as 4 years later, he was crowned the top student in the Music Production and Engineering Department, and earned the Al Schmitt Award that recognises the most exceptional upcoming engineer. Later on, he’d go on to teach and mentor for Berklee College.

Outside of his studies, Ciaran has worked under many industry icons, including Grammy winners Prince Charles Alexander (Notorious B.I.G, P Diddy),Leanne Ungar (Leonard Cohen) and Susan Rogers (Prince).
He also copped the opportunity to work alongside multiple Grammy winner Larry Klein, known for his work with Joni Mitchell, Herbie Hancock, Tracy Chapman and many others.  Together, the pair co-produced the debut album ‘The Space Between’ with Norwegian Artist Ingrid Saga.

Reflecting on Ciaran’s contribution, Ingrid shared: “Working with Ciaran is both serious digging for depths and pockets of meaning, and just a great freaking hang! He helps shape my music into what it is becoming”. 

Ciaran also stepped up as a recording engineer on Jon Ranes’ ‘Loverboy’–helping shape the album that earned 8.8 million streams on Spotify.

In terms of recent achievements, Ciaran’s position at Henson in Hollywood speaks volumes, and just like the stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

Sources: Supplied 
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About the Author

Ashleigh Nefdt is a writer for Good Things Guy.

Ashleigh's favourite stories have always seen the hidden hero (without the cape) come to the rescue. As a journalist, her labour of love is finding those everyday heroes and spotlighting their spark - especially those empowering women, social upliftment movers, sustainability shakers and creatives with hearts of gold. When she's not working on a story, she's dedicated to her canvas or appreciating Mother Nature.

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