Meet Antonio Luna: Monitor Engineer for Alicia Keys

AntonioLunaSome of you have had the pleasure of seeing Alicia Keys on stage, now meet the guy that keeps her happy while she is up there singing her little heart out. Meet Chicago native, Antonio Luna. We tossed some questions at Antonio and he was kind enough to get back to us.

Here is what he had to say about his career, bands he’s worked with and what he thinks about the product and services he gets from JH Audio!

Where were you born and do you still currently live there?
I’m a Chicagoan at heart. Born on Lake Shore Drive and Diversey Ave in Chicago Illinois, late 1960’s..  I don’t live there anymore.  These days I live in Northwest Indiana.  Far enough from the b.s. politics but close enough to enjoy the city..

Who is/are your favorite artist/band(s)?
Wow! This might take awhile…  Iron Maiden, The Police, Cheap Trick, Muse, Queen, Rush, AC/DC, AlterBridge, Coheed and Cambria, Collective Soul, The Posies (Canada’s greatest contribution to pop music), The Gufs (Milwaukee’s greatest contribution to pop music), anything with guitars that are bigger than life and vocals to match..
When did you start working in the music industry and what was your first job?
1987…  Tom and Neil Barnhardt gave me my first job selling instruments at their mom and pop music store, Music Lab in Lansing, IL ..  they had just built there first pa, an old 2 box design that was hurlers and g3 cabs.  It was fate that I would soon move over to the PA dept..
Where did you go to school to learn to be a sound engineer? Or did you learn everything as you went along?
From 87 to 89 I spent my time running from school to work..  There was no sleep.  Sleep was for the dead.  I attended Columbia College, worked at Paragon Studios in Chicago as an intern under Marty Feldman, worked as a monitor engineer at the Vic Theater, the house sound guy at The Cubby Bear and Cabaret Metro and was the Band Engineer for the Chicago production of the 20th anniversary production of Hair the Musical..  My teachers at the time were the legends of the business.  I miss you Malcolm Chisholm and Marty Feldman! You could say that I learned how to do it the hard way (some might say the right way), hands on and lots of trial and error..  Some school but mostly really hard work just doing it..

Have you always been a monitor engineer or did you have other jobs in music?
I have held many positions on tour and I think that this has given me a better appreciation for what others do.  I’ve been…  a Tour Manager, Production Manager, FOH engineer, Monitor engineer, Systems Engineer, PA fly tech, Crew Chief, and backline guy..

What bands/artists have you worked with?
Just mixing credits? 3 Doors Down, The Allman Bros, Eric Benet, Justin Beiber, Aerosmith, KISS, Trans Siberian Orchestra, Lou Gramm, Cheap Trick, Matchbox20, The Gufs, Full Devil Jacket, Freddy Jones Band.  I’m probably missing somebody, the list is long..

What JH Audio Custom Monitors are you currently using? What other models of JH Audio Custom Monitors have you used?
At the moment I’m using JH13 Pro, I’ve also used JH16 and JH11 in the past..

What make them stand out in terms of sound quality from the competition?
In 2 words? Phase Coherency!  It sounds right, right out of the box.  Its not dull or overly bright. I can mix immediately without the need for large eq hacks.  I’m really into products that make my workflow easier..

Have you heard they new freqphase models? What do you feel is the difference between the prior models and the new freqphase models?
Hmmm that’s a really good question.  Now that I’ve used the 13Pro for the past 4 months I’m curious to listen to the other products I have and compare.  I really didn’t have time to listen..  We got our product and then we went into rehearsals and I didn’t have time to listen to everything else. I own 8 different models from different manufacturers..  Every so often I listen to all of them to see what the differences are.  JH is always the winner..  I think I need to do another shootout..

How do you feel about the service you get from JHAudio while you are out on the road? I LOVE MY JH FAMILY!!  I get great service from them!  Help is only a phone call away and I can always count on them.  They help me keep my job and that to me is very important.  When you are on the road its always nice to know JH has my back!


One thought on “Meet Antonio Luna: Monitor Engineer for Alicia Keys

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