Employee Spotlight: JM Cifonie

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In his Audio Post/Sound Design position at Vazda Studios, Intermark Group’s in-house production facility, JM Cifonie handles anything and everything audible. His responsibilities include recording, mixing and sound designing the audio for TV, video and radio spots. Essentially, JM is the ears behind the operation. To learn more about JM and his role at Vazda Studios, check out his Employee Spotlight.

Q: Give us a little background on how you got into the industry?  

 A: Well, I started with one of those tape recorder thingys…Long story short, it was a personal interest and hobby that turned into a career.  I got a little lucky.

Q: What brought you to Vazda Studios and how did you get started in your current position?

A: I spent the first 10-12 years of my career working in a traditional recording studio where I was mostly recording bands. As you can imagine, I met a lot of people in the Birmingham music scene. One of those fellas was Nick Punch. He held my position at Vazda before me and gave me a great recommendation when he left. Of course, I also dazzled Vazda’s leader, Randy Mihalchik, and won the job with big technical audio words. He still thinks I’m a genius.

Q: What’s your favorite part about what you do?  

A: My favorite part is collaboration. Working with other talent is the best part of what I do. Completing a thought artistically is not always an easy thing in this business, but I feel the journey has become more important than the destination.

Q: What’s the most challenging part of your job?  

A: Making everyone happy. Impossible. But, it doesn’t mean you don’t try.

Q: Do you have a favorite project that Intermark or Vazda has worked on in the past?

A: I remember the 15-second spots we did for H2. The concept was fun, and the video execution was great. Sounded pretty cool, too.

Q: Are you seeing any new trends in the marketing/advertising industry?

A: I wouldn’t say new, but execution has become very strong…I am just the audio guy.

Q: Favorite quote/saying?

A: This is probably not my fav, but I just read it and liked it:

“If you’re in the middle of the ocean with no flippers and no life preserver and you hear a helicopter, this is music. You have to adjust to your needs at the moment.” -Tom Waits

Q: What’s something that most people would be surprised to learn about you?  

A: I don’t know…I like to golf?