Burlington recording engineer up for 3rd straight Grammy on latest Bruno Mars album

“They’re not my songs, they’re everyone’s.”
adam.carter@cbc.ca The Burlington sound engineer is heading back at the Grammys next month for the third year in a row. Sometimes the enormity of those records hit home in unconventional ways. He used to be his bass player and has worked with him as a recording engineer on all of his live shows, including his Super Bowl showcase and Grammy performances. Then last year, he won another Grammy, this time for his work on Adele’s 25. In Brazil, that came in the form of kids standing outside his hotel window, singing the Mars tune Chunky. As time rolls on, that collaboration is providing some massive hits. Burlington sound engineer heads to The Grammys for Uptown Funk

“I’m fortunate to work with some of the best musicians in the world today.”
– Charles Moniz

“Just knowing the work we put in — these nominations feel so great,” he said on the phone from Columbia, where Mars’s tour is currently finishing up its South American Leg. As a recording engineer, Moniz is responsible for everything from the mics in the studio to the mixing console to the sound that’s pumping out of the studio speakers. “My job is to make sure that creativity can flow,” he said. “But hearing it like that — it just connects in these weird moments.”

Moniz, who was Avril Lavigne’s bass player from 2001 to 2005, has been working with Mars for about seven years now. Songs like 24K Magic and All I Ask are touching every corner of the globe. “It’s crazy. Sure, there are thousands of people singing along at shows on tour — but there are smaller moments where it really becomes obvious. He was instrumental in constructing that “doh” vocal bassline that kicks off the track. You always think every year was a fluke.”

But Moniz is way past fluke territory. “This stuff is definitely much bigger than me,” he said. Moniz is up for best engineered album – non-classical, as well as album of the year and record of the year. “They definitely weren’t singing it to me,” Moniz laughed. “Recording music can be quite complicated — my job is to make sure that [the artists] never notice that.”

“I’m fortunate to work with some of the best musicians in the world today.”

That’s not hyperbole. You’d be hard pressed to find bigger music stars than Mars and Adele right now. Charles Moniz is becoming a red carpet veteran. He won a Grammy for record of the year in 2016 for Mark Ronson’s Uptown Funk featuring Mars. He’s up for several awards for his part in Bruno Mars’s latest multi-platinum album, 24K Magic.