David Cabrera: Producer, Songwriter, Musician, Composer and Hit Maker

 

| February 17, 2012

Dave Cabrera

Dave Cabrera

Producer, musician, songwriter, composer are just a few of the many talents that have scored this gent some groovy accolades. Grammy award winner, David Cabrera has performed and worked with a number of recording artists such as Ricky Martin, Christina Aguilera, Quincy Jones, and many more. We were lucky to catch a moment with him for our first interview with one of South Florida’s “big guys” of music. Thanks Dave for agreeing to interview with us!

MDM: When and how did you get into music?

DC: Actually music has always been a big part of my life since I could remember, as a child. There were always instruments in our house, organ, xylophone, drums, and guitars. I seriously began pursuing it at the age of 13.

MDM: How did you get into writing and producing?

DC: I was always writing and producing since I was about 15 (my own music and band). After many years of session work and touring as musical director for many artists, I built a reputation for putting together the live show. This led me to produce and co-produce a few projects from MTV Unplugged to Ricky Martin Live. From there I was blessed to produce singles for Chayanne, Paulina Rubio, as well tracks for Lil’ Wayne, Fat Joe, and The Game. All the while, I was always writing music and was fortunate to get many songs placed on records by artists such as Jon Secada, Soraya, Ricky Martin….. [MDM: To name a few].

MDM: What artists have you played/recorded with?

I have been blessed to work with so many. Off the top of my head… Lenny Kravitz, Ricky Martin, Jennifer Lopez, Lil’ Wayne, The Game, Paulina Rubio, Santana, P. Diddy, KC and the Sunshine Band to name few…

MDM: Tell us about your hits, Grammys and other awards…What was it like to get your first “big one”?

It seemed like I was always working on “big” songs… my first was when I was part of the production team for miami hit makers Cool & Dre. I worked on “Hate it or Love it”, For the Game and 50 Cent with Dr. Dre. I received my first platinum record for millions of copies sold…… That was the first real big one for me. I worked on many big records but it wasn’t until a few years later when I worked Ricky Martin’s MTV Unplugged which went platinum and afterwards I wrote and produced “Amor Inmortal ” for Chayanne which went to number one on the Latin Billboard Charts. This set the stage for what was to come.

I was finally blessed with winning my first Grammy as producer for Franco De Vita’s “Primera Fila”. It was nominated for 5 Grammys and we came home with two. One for Best Pop Album Vocal Male and the other, Best Long Playing Video… For me it really marked many years of sacrifice , not only mine but my parents and my family … I owe that one to them.

MDM: What are you currently working on?

Well, right now I am Musical Director and member of the cast of the TV show “Q Viva” with Jennifer Lopez and Marc Anthony. I’m also producing a single for J-LO featuring Wisin and Yandel for Universal.

MDM: That’s great to hear David, we’ll be on the lookout for you on the show! How do you see the music business now and where do you think it is headed?

Lots of people think [the music business] is in a bad state… To me, I chose to be a part of the change for the better. I feel if you know how to write and produce your own records, now is the best time for you. Truthfully, with the Internet you really don’t have a need for major label. You can get it out there to your audience yourself. Still you cannot romanticize and think it will come to you. You must be smart about your business, and have the right artist, songs and publicist behind you. There are many great Independent examples out there to model after. Don’t forget it has always been about the ideas and the songs first. That is what separates what’s classic from the normal… I feel in many ways it is coming back to that: Real songs…

MDM: Thanks again David for this interview. Before we go, Do you have any advice for composers and songwriters who are just getting started in the business?

Never stop writing. Also understand there is a whole other field where your music can be heard such as commercials, film, TV, etc… Create a demo reel and shop them to publishers, local TV and radio stations… Also collaborate with other writers as much as possible… leave the ego out of it… People forget that one of biggest writers of our time Barry Manilow began as a jingle writer for McDonald’s… But seriously, the right placement in TV or Film can set you on your way. Don’t just focus on the record industry… Remember, music is universal, from the live stage, plays, musicals, to TV, Movies and albums…

Words to remember from a notable artist! Thanks Dave.

—MDM.