An Intersection Of Tech & Music: A Q&A With Perrin Meyer

By NextSpace on May. 17, 2017

Written by Danielle Sebastian 

NextSpace Berkeley houses some of the most talented, innovative companies of our generation. Whether it be exploring virtual reality to create 360° video experiences or analyzing production methods to innovate sound equipment, our members push the limits of technology on a daily basis. We are constantly amazed by the variety of talent found in our community; some members’ skill set stand out, like Perrin Meyer. Headquartered in Berkeley, Meyer Sound's legendary unit-to-unit consistency is changing the game of music software and hardware. 

Please tell us about yourself and your background in music.

I’ve been around music my whole life. I was born in Berkeley, but traveled across the country to get my masters degree at New York University. While working closely with global climate change organizations in college, I studied physics and mathematics to gain a solid foundation of knowledge in order to design audio equipment and software. After grad school, I began working at Meyer Sound in the early 2000s. My dad founded the company in the 1970s after working in live sound production with artists like Elvis Presley and Steve Miller.

Describe Meyer Sound’s competitive advantage in the music industry.

Meyer Sound is held in high regard for advancing the science of audio, claiming over 40 patents for the industry.  We specialize in high-end professional audio equipment. Our company also has an education department that teaches worldwide. 

Coworking is a growing industry with lots of competition. What brought you to NextSpace, and how long have you been coworking?

I’ve been a member of NextSpace Berkeley for about a year now. When I initially searched for a space, I did some research and visited other places, but NextSpace’s atmosphere suited my personality the best. Location is important to me - it helps to be close to the University of California, Berkeley since I work on projects with the college’s music department. Also, it’s convenient being only a few steps away from Downtown Berkeley BART for when I need to travel to San Francisco. Having my own space outside from Meyer Sound corporate offices allows me to focus on special projects rather than getting sucked into the tedious tasks of day-to-day product development. NextSpace gives me a better work-life balance and a chance to think about things in the future.

NextSpace has a strong emphasis on its community. How important is this to you and your business?

Throughout my membership, I’ve met some incredible members at NextSpace like Siciliana Trevino of Off Planet VR. After meeting her I actually bought an HTC Vive (a virtual reality headset). I’m deeply invested in keeping up with sound technology and research and development, and having a membership at NextSpace Berkeley is essential to my process. In all honesty, 

I use NextSpace as a means of retreat and a place to focus on my ultimate goal: to elevate the sound of music.

— Perrin Meyer

What are some memorable moments of your career?

My favorite moment in live sound production was when Mickey Hart from Grateful Dead invited me on stage where I sat behind him and his drums during a whole set. There’s something about rock-and-roll, it’s a lot of fun! The most challenging aspect of my career is mixing family with business - when we get into arguments they tend to treat me like I’m 12 years old. On the other hand, it can also be difficult to work with people outside of my family. In the end, I know everyone has good intentions. When you innovate products and technology there will always be several possible ways to get one thing done, but that’s what intrigues me the most: the possibilities of sound.

Meyer Sound is renowned not only for its products, but also for collaborating with amazing headlining artists. What are some of your favorite bands you worked with?

Nirvana and Rush had some great shows. My favorite event was the Montreux Jazz Festival in the Swiss Alps. In addition to bands, I’ve worked on sound projects with Berkeley Center for New Media and helped to create a sound art car for Burning Man.

What long-term impact would you personally like to have on music?

I have two major goals: I work to improve the quality of sound in music and to keep music free. The music industry functions so poorly - instead of focusing on the education of music, they focus on greed. My goal is to change that.

Join our community! Schedule a tour here

Perrin Meyer

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