Name: Kala Sherman
Company: New Math
Can you describe your company?
We are a bicoastal audio production company, with offices in NYC and LA, specializing in original music, sound design, audio mix and music supervision.
What’s your job title?
What does that entail?
I do everything from managing our staff to producing projects to sales and development.
What would surprise people the most about what’s underneath that title?
I am an untrained, but really good psychotherapist.
What have you learned over the years about running a business?
It’s highly competitive and you have to continue to hustle and push the creative product in order to stay relevant. Also, it’s paramount to assemble the best talent and treat them with the utmost respect; without our producers or composers there wouldn’t be a business.
A lot of it must be about trying to keep employees and clients happy. How do you balance that?
We face at least one root challenge: How do you keep both your clients and your creative staff happy? I think how you approach and sell an idea to the composers while still delivering what the client needs is a real art form. It gets tricky with limited music budgets these days, but I’ve found over the years that there are ways to structure the deals where the clients feel like they can get the music and sound design they need while the composers feel well-compensated and creatively fulfilled.
What’s your favorite part of the job?
I love the fact that we are creating music and I get to be part of that process.
What’s your least favorite?
Competitive demoing. Partnering with clients is just way more fun than knowing you are competing with other companies. And not too ironically, it usually results in the best and freshest creative product.
What is your favorite time of the day?
I love the evenings when I get home and hang with my daughter.
If you didn’t have this job, what would you be doing instead?
I always knew I had to work in music, so I would have probably stayed on the label side of the music business.
Can you name some recent clients?
Google, Trojan, Smirnoff, KFC, Chobani, Walmart, Zappos and ESPN.
Name three pieces of technology you can’t live without.
Spotify. Laptop. iPhone.
You recently added final mix capabilities in both of your locations. Can you talk about why now was the time?
We want to be a full-service audio company for our clients. It just makes sense when many of our clients want to work with one company for all audio needs. If we are already providing the music and sound design, why not record the VO and provide mix as well. Plus, it’s really fun to have clients in the studio.
What tools will be used for the mixing rooms?
Focal 5.1 monitor system in both the NY and LA mix rooms. Pro Tools mix system with the latest plugin suites. High-quality analog outboard gear from Neve, API, DW Fearn, Summit and more.
Any recent jobs in these studios you can talk about?
Yes. We just completed Chobani, Acuvue and Yellawood mixes.
Main Image: (L-R) New Math partners David Wittman, Kala Sherman, Raymond Loewy