Susan Rogers

Associate Professor
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"When I was young, I wanted to make records. I started in the business in 1978 as an audio technician, and I was able to eventually work my way into engineering and production. I loved making records, but along the way I began to realize that I might also enjoy working as a scientist. To have a professional music career as an engineer and producer meant traveling all the time. Clients might want to work in NY or LA or Nashville or Miami or Texas or Europe, so often I would go on the road with them. It was a very hectic life."

"Record producing is a youth-oriented profession. Most producers are making records that are consumed by younger people. When I was in my mid-40s, I was making records for a college audience, mostly alternative rock, and I had finally reached a point where I was no longer listening to the records that I was making."

"In the late '90s I produced a hit record with Barenaked Ladies. I took my royalty check and quit the music business, and in 2000 enrolled as a freshman at the University of Minnesota. I went to McGill University in Montreal to do my graduate work in music perception and cognition. This branch of psychology explores musical behaviors from the psycho- and neurological perspective, in other words, the what, where, how, when, and why of human musical experience."

"Berklee hired me to teach engineering and production, but also to help implement a more music-centric science program in the Liberal Arts department. They encouraged me to design courses in music cognition and psychoacoustics."

"To be teaching engineering and production at Berklee is satisfying, because these young people are just starting what will probably be extraordinarily exciting careers. They have voracious appetites for popular music and strong desires to express themselves. I am eager to hear what this generation will do in the service of the music industry."

 

 

Career Highlights

 

  • B.Sc., University of Minnesota
  • Ph.D., McGill University, experimental psychology
  • Recordings as a mixer/engineer with Prince, David Byrne, Barenaked Ladies, Tricky, Paul Westerberg, Geggy Tah, and Michael Penn
  • Research interests include auditory memory, music perception and cognition, and psychoacoustics