Imaging Malaysia, Creating Music, and… Who is Skinny D?

I was following Yuhashan’s work on Soundcloud for a while and lately I decided to hit him up and learn more about his work for Hitz Fm, his music and… oh man, we clicked right away… 🙂 Yuhashan gave me some background info about his career so far, his education and you can just tell, the guy loves what he does! Check it out!!!

My name is Yuhashan, 29 years old from Malaysia. I am currently based in Malaysia with Hitz FM, working as an audio production engineer for the station. I do Radio Imaging (Images, Sweepers, Power Intros, SFX, Promos, Jingle, Compositions, Mashups, etc…). Education wise, I have a BA (Hons) in Audio Production. I graduated at SAE Singapore which was accredited by Middlesex University. 

I’ve been working at Hitz FM (Number 1 English CHR Station) for 5 years now and I’ve also worked for other stations previously, such as Mix FM (English Hot AC Station), and Lite FM (English AC Station). Besides English Stations, I also oversee and help out on radio productions for THR Raaga (Number 1 Tamil Station). All the stations are under 1 company, Astro Radio, and it’s all based here in Malaysia. 
Besides radio productions, I also compose music and I’ve released a couple of tracks with Hitz FM. My 1st Single “Turkish Delight” was nominated for VIMA Awards Malaysia (Best Hip Hop Song). My 2nd Single “Here Comes The D” reached 100k views in less than 3 days.

1. Which production system do you use  and why?
I mainly use Pro Tools for all my radio productions (editing, mixing, mastering). For music productions I use Reason (compositions, sampling, chops). Pro Tools is the only software we have at the place I work, so it became my primary tool. Reason is the software I use at home for music. I randomly come up with beats and melodies when im in the mood, lol. So that’s how I juggle my work with these 2 kickass softwares. 
2. What are your favourite PlugIns? What is the perfect VO chain?
 My favourite 3 PlugIns are H-Delay Stereo, Pitch ‘n Time Pro 2.5, Structure Free & Vacuum. I love the Ping Pong preset in H-Delay Stereo, I use them in most of my productions. It gives a perfect stereo panned delay effect and blends in smoothly on my beats with the proper usage of BPM. Pitch ‘n Time is my go to PlugIn all the time. I think I might be the only producer who never uses Grid Mode hahaha. I am more comfortable with calculations on Slip Mode and Pitch ‘n Time helps big time when it comes to beat mix and pitching. Lastly, the special Pro Tools AIR Instruments bundle (Structure Free & Vacuum). I use Structure Free for vocal chops and Vacuum for most of my synth sounds. To trigger these PlugIns, I have my own MicroKey Midi Keyboard to play them.
H-Delay Stereo PlugIn:

Pitch ‘n Time Pro 2.5 PlugIn: 

Structure Free PlugIn:
Vacuum PlugIn:
My VO Chains are pretty basic. I use the L1 Limiter to master, balance my main VO and then manually duplicate the track and apply EQ 3 1-Band (High Pass) to sharpen the VO. I change my VO template from time to time, so I don’t have a specific VO Chain. But the one VO Plugin which I love the most is the PS22 XSplit, it has a beautiful stereo widening effect and sounds really full. I don’t use them much on my radio productions, because panning is always a debate, depending on our car built in speakers. I use this effect in my music production, especially on the Chorus (Hooks) to highlight the part!
3. How do you schedule your work? How do you balance your music vs. Imaging timewise?
I’m an old school person lol, I write things down rather than relying on gadgets! So I’ll always write my daily to do list on a notebook, then I’ll prioritize depending on the urgency (deadlines). It really helps, especially when it comes to speed and time management. I don’t do music frequently, as much as I do Imaging. Music productions happen like maybe 3 or 4 times per year (Parodies, Singles, Year End Rap Up, etc…). So when the project kicks in, I’ll just fully focus on that and work on it. As for radio productions, I have a self-made timetable which I’ve been following for the past 2 years. I always do my Imagings and Power Intros on Monday & Tuesday, because the first 2 days of the week are always chilled and I can spend more time on creative executions. Then the remaining days I work on the other productions which don’t take much of my time. That’s how I balance and prioritize my work.  
4. What do you love about working for Hitz FM?
Hitz FM is and always will be my baby station. I have a long history with the station, I started off as an intern, learning radio with Hitz and now I’m the senior audio production engineer for Hitz (4 years and counting). What I love about working with this station is the quality maintenance and given freedom to explore creativity. Hitz FM is Malaysia’s Number 1 English Station, so that explains why the quality level of the station sound is very important. I keep reminding myself that everything has to be awesome with Hitz, even if it’s a 5 second Promo. And I love working with my content team from the day I joined, they trust my work and gave me the full freedom to do anything I want with my own sounds for any production. That’s how I grew, teamwork is very important in this industry! 
5. What is the best Pro Tools or production trick anybody should know?
Every Imaging Producer has their own signature move/production trick. Mine is mostly Musical, yes. I like chopping and sampling. I will always start with a basic beatmix, then end up splicing words from the particular song and adding it onto the beat I’ve chosen. That’s my style of working. I love to apply my musical skills into my radio imaging productions. You can head nod to Hip Hop Music and you can head nod to my Imagings, I can promise you that! So find your groove, be proud of it and own it! You have to love your own work and make sure it’s catchy or creative. 
6. How do you get inspired and what do you use as source of creativity? 
Soundcloud! I have the App on my phone and I’ll go through the playlists every time before I go to bed. I’ll just listen to all the Imagings from around the world no matter what format or genre, and ideas will just flow. This Benztown Blog is also very important to me, so much useful information and awesome tricks! Most importantly, keep sharing your work and getting feedback from other producers too. Always be humble and keep learning, nobody is perfect.  


7. Who were your radio production idols, who influenced your work as a music producer?
When it comes to music, I’m a hardcore fan of DJ Tiesto, Timbaland and AR Rahman. They are my main influences! Music production is more like a hobby to me, but maybe one day I will venture into this and do it full time for a living! Nothing is planned, lol. That’s the best part of life, everyday is a new day! Be nice and have fun 🙂
These past few years I’ve been constantly communicating with other Imaging Experts to improvise and understand my work better. Big shoutout to Denzil Lacey (FM 104), Tom Cross (Imaging Blueprint), Bert & Team (Best Radio Imaging) and Andreas Sannemann (Benztown). Thank you so much guys for your comments on my work, it really boosts my confidence! From the day I started working as an Imaging Producer, I get inspired all the time listening to their work. I am proud and confident enough to say I’m the best Imaging Producer in my country. I’m now bringing my work globally and fighting my ass off to get my work noticed and recognized by other International Radio Stations and Imaging Companies. This is not an easy road, it takes 100% of my passion and 200% of my hard work. I just wanna grow bigger in this industry and represent the whole of South East Asia as the leading Imaging Producer. That is my ultimate goal! It will happen soon, #nevergiveup 🙂
8. What would be your 3 key advices for a youngster?

Be Passionate, Be Humble, And HUSTLE!

Always love what you do – huge passion brings you places. Always be nice to everyone, don’t ever show negative vibes because reputation is very important in any industry. Lastly, if you want something, go all out for it! Nothing comes easy in life, work hard for it and you can party your ass off in Vegas. Which is what I am going to do soon one day hahaha 🙂 Cheers!
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