- Wednesday, Jul. 8, 2015
Upon unveiling a major 2nd floor expansion including the addition of two state-of-the-art, audio post-production mixing suites, veteran Mixer Jeff Payne at Eleven has also promoted talents from within the company during this time of growth. Payne’s long-time Assistant Mixer Ben Freer has been promoted to Mixer and now calls Studio B his home suite. Assistant Mixer AJ Murillo has also been promoted to Mixer and is working on his own commercial, TV, film and music video projects; as well as working directly with Payne on all his clients’ projects.
Additionally, Benjamin “Boom” Tomastik has been hired on from his intern position to staff Assistant Mixer. Eleven has also welcomed Melissa Elston to the team in her new role as Client Relations and Facility Coordinator. Eleven Mixer Scott Burns, Executive Producer Suzanne Hollingshead, Producer Dawn Redmann and Accountant Debbie Romeo continue in their key roles at Eleven.
“I remember so clearly my first break in this industry given to me at POP Sound by Alan Kozlowski, a real visionary in our business,” says Payne about the new promotions and addition to the Eleven team. “Our business is so competitive now; it’s difficult for anyone to get that first break. I am thrilled that after years of working with me, Ben has now moved into the position of Mixer. Over the past seven years, Ben has really earned this chance. He is a true asset and a fine Mixer. I can’t wait to see where his mixing career takes him. And I would say the same for AJ; his work ethic is second to none and his potential is limitless.”
“Boom and Melissa are each unique young talents with a great deal to offer and very bright futures,” continues Payne. “I’m excited to give them the opportunity to take that next step in each of their careers under the Eleven roof. As a business owner, it’s very rewarding to both be able to expand and give young talents their break simultaneously.”
Suzanne Hollingshead, Executive Producer, has been integral in Eleven’s developments over the last few years. “It’s a very exciting time for Eleven,” she adds. “Sixteen years in business, now announcing the evolution and developments within our team just after unveiling the studio’s physical expansion, gives a clear indication of where we are going as a company and a family,” she explains.
“The thrill is more than two-fold, it’s squared: we spent over a year designing and building a dream-space-addition to offer ourselves, and our clients an incomparable environment to create in,” Hollingshead continues. “Whilst those very same new physical doors we have opened to accommodate demand for our services are the figurative doors we opened for young talents on our team. Growth for the studio means growth for our staff to expand their creative processes and reach. It doesn’t get better than this.”
Mixer Ben Freer originally comes from Manchester, England; but grew up in San Diego, California. After earning his BA in Film, TV & Radio Production from Cal State Monterey, Freer returned to England to earn his engineering certificate from The School of Sound Recording. After his internship at Eleven, Ben joined the staff in 2007 in Client Services and quickly jumped into Assistant Mixer as soon as the opportunity arose. Ben learned under Payne’s wing for years and has since built his reputation as an excellent Mixer in his own right. He has sound designed and mixed for major ad campaigns and clients including Dodge, Chrysler, Geico, Jordan Brand and Vogue. Ben has also lent his talents on music videos and various documentaries such as “The Real Rocky” for ESPN’s 30 For 30 Series. An avid lover of vinyl, he still rocks the 1’s and 2’s when DJing parties (in his living room).
“Jeff has really mentored me,” says Mixer Ben Freer. “His work ethic and talent are that of a master. He has taught me how to push a mix and make it better and better. I’m so grateful for this chance. Living here in L.A., Eleven is not just where we work every day; it’s really been a family and I’m so grateful for this chance to take my career to the next level in commercials, film, TV, video games, music videos, web content and any other medium that develops in my lifetime!”
A Los Angeles native, AJ Murillo’s love for music eventually lead him to pursue a career in post production. While attending San Francisco State studying audio engineering with a focus in music, AJ switched his collegiate focus from music to post and began an internship at One Union Recording in San Francisco. After graduating in 2008, he moved home to L.A., and the hunt for his next internship brought him to Eleven. After six months of slinging lunch orders, AJ was hired as an Assistant Mixer. Now honing his skills as Mixer, AJ also plays punk rock music all over the greater Los Angeles area. “The best of both worlds,” he says.
“I’ve learned so much from Jeff and being here at Eleven for the past five years,“ continues AJ. “This expansion was Jeff’s chance to give me and Freer a shot in the driver’s seat. It means a lot that he believes in us, in me, enough to give me the chance to work closely with him and also mix in my own studio.”
With the expansion complete and the team’s internal promotions and additions solid; the Eleven team continues to work on a diversity of projects, most recently including: Dodge Brothers, GMC, Heinz, Toyota, Expedia, Wix.com, Mazda, Hyundai, Dodge Ram, Firestone, Jack In The Box, Chevy Silverado and Colorado, Buick, Timberland, Mitsubishi, the many projects of Mike Rowe, M&Ms, Buick, T-Mobile, and others.
Eleven’s recent expansion marks the next phase of Eleven’s growth as Mixer Jeff Payne continues, since1999, to cater his audio services to an extensive national advertising client list and promote talents from within the company. Over the last year, Payne and Hollingshead oversaw the renovation of the upstairs floor in the Eleven facility, transforming it into a new mixing suite for Jeff (three times the size of his previous room), as well as an additional mixing suite, 2 large voice-over recording booths, an upstairs client lounge, and a gallery space for revolving art exhibits.
While committed to providing the highest quality sound and top tier service for its clients, the Eleven team also has a collective passion for music, philanthropy and the creative process. Their famous LIVE@Eleven private music showcase series continues both on- and off-site, featuring incredible artists such as Allen Stone, Capital Cities, Family of the Year, The Madden Brothers, Crash Kings, Andy Vargas and several others, while supporting various national and local non-profit organizations. Together, Eleven and its partners have raised awareness and funds for local and international charities such as The Rainforest Alliance, Kiva.org, Stand Up For Kids, m.a.m.a. earth, Meals On Wheels, among many others.