Bios

About Us

 

RALPH KELSEY

One of Sandblast’s founding members, Ralph is a percussionist, multi-instrumentalist, composer and sound designer.  A graduate of SUNY Fredonia with a B.S. in Sound Recording Technology, he has mixed parody spots for the Film Unit of Saturday Night Live for twenty years.  Recent projects include: sound design for ESPN’s Brickyard 500 and Indy 500; VO records with Stacy Keach for CNBC’s American Greed;  and sound-design and mixes for ESPN’s Monday Night Football.  He also created the music re-mixes of the Dexter Theme for last season’s premiere on Showtime, as well as sound-designing and mixing episodes of Nat Geo’s Amish Out of Order and American Gypsies.   Both Ralph and Mike Ungar mixed the EPSY’s again this year.

Ralph is currently recording ADR and completed the final theme music mix for the upcoming Nickelodeon show Zack & Quack.  He also created music and mix for a Sesame Workshop Interactive project, and will be once again mixing episodes for HBO’s returning series, Vice.

LOREN TOOLAJIAN

A Sandblast founding member and composer, producer and broadcaster, Loren recently completed music for Sesame Street’s upcoming season of Murray Has A Little Lamb.  He also wrote music for Sesame’s Emmy Award-winning Growing Hope Against Hunger. He and music partner Mike Ungar have written music for a number of Sesame DVDs, including Elmo’s Potty Time, and for Sesame Beginnings. He also composed the Opening Title music for this and last year’s Indy 500 on ABC, and for the 25th anniversary audio book production of Ken Kesey’s One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest .

As the resident composer of New York’s Signature Theatre Company, Loren wrote music for and collaborated with playwrights and artists that include Arthur Miller, Sam Shepard, Horton Foote, Lanford Wilson, T Bone Burnett, Adrienne Kennedy, Regina Taylor, and Edward Albee. He recently produced records for Meghan Andrews, Shane Patrick, and three new songs for singer/songwriter/actor Jesse Lenat.  Loren is a proud member of New York’s renowned 52nd Street Project for whom he has written and music-directed over 75 songs.

His music has been featured on ABC, CBS, NBC, PBS, NPR, Showtime, MTV, ESPN, and HBO, and on film and in NY and regional theatre in Boston, San Francisco, and Louisville. He produces a monthly radio show for the Metropolitan Opera House called This Month at the Met, conducts live backstage interviews for the 11 million listeners worldwide of the Metropolitan Opera Saturday broadcast, and frequently produces and hosts weeknight broadcasts at the Met heard on Sirius/XM radio.

 

MICHAEL UNGAR

One of the founding members of Sandblast, Mike is a jazz trumpeter, multi-instrumentalist, composer, sound designer, and audio-post mixer who has received acclaim most recently for his recent mixing and underscore of Sesame Workshop’s Outreach series. Other featured projects include radio spots for Showtime’s Dexter/Homeland premieres, all ten seasons of Yankees on Deck for the YES Network, promos for the 2012 Olympics, and the nomination packages and award pieces for the ESPYs for the past twelve years. Mike has also created the sound design and mixed the launch campaigns for Spike’s Ink Master, Bar Rescue, and World’s Worst Tenants.

Michael has written and produced music for many Sesame Workshop DVDs, including their most popular DVD of all time, Elmo’s Potty Time, and the series Sesame Beginnings.  Additional clients include Nickelodeon, Syfy, ESPN, Logo, HBO, A&E Networks, Bloomberg, Worldwide and many more.

As an ethnomusicologist, Michael works with instruments from the most ancient in the world (didgeridoo) to those not of this world (Paiste’s planetary gongs.), and along with his wife Maren Good has created  sonic baths for meditations and ceremonies for such luminaries as visionary artists Alex and Allyson Grey, cymatics philosopher and teacher Jeff Volk and Deepak Chopra.

 

BILL LACEY

Composer, sound designer/mixer and Grammy Award-winning mastering and restoration engineer, Bill recently sound-designed and mixed the launch trailers for Showtime’s Dexter, Ray Donovan and Masters of Sex original series.  In addition to his post-production work for Showtime Networks and Major League Baseball he restored sound for Sesame Workshop’s Old School, Vol. 3 - which was profiled in Post Magazine - well as sound restoration of the classic Fellini film “La Dolce Vita,” - for which he received a prestigious CEDAR Award.   He has also mastered over 300 CDs.

As a composer Bill has scored twelve films, six television shows and over a hundred trailers, promos and commercials, including recent music for Dexter, House of Lies and Shameless.  He also received an Emmy Nomination for his original score for the Smithsonian 9/11 trailer.

Bill writes for the esteemed British publications Sound On Sound and Resolution and lectures at Montclair State University in New Jersey.

SEAN CANADA

Sean is one of our phenomenal audio engineers as well as the Director of Technical Operations.  He has been mixing for television for the past ten years, since working his way up from assistant bagel slicer and tape librarian to audio assistant and, finally, to his double life as mixer and technician, all under the expert tutelage of Mike & Ralph.

 He got his start with recording in high school, performing & recording all the parts on his own music, as well as producing records for his and other local bands out of his parents’ living room.

 Sean then decided this could actually be a career and went to NYU for Music Technology, where he learned all aspects of recording, technology, music, and audio for video.  He graduated Magna Cum Laude with a Bachelor of Music in Technology.  During his time in school he won a Mix Magazine TEC Award for Excellence in Audio Education.

Now, Sean is happy to oversee our brand new SandBlast Studios, as well as to continue working on many diverse projects for a myriad of clients.

SHANE CONRY

Shane graduated at the top of his class with a degree in Music Technology and Ethnomusicology, and began his career in NYC as a recording and mix engineer, cutting his teeth on everything from Hip-Hop & Jazz to Rock and Techno. He has worked with stars including Cam-Ron, Tribe Called Quest, Diddy Dirty Money and Digable Planets, and has produced a number of projects on his own as well as remixing artists like Madonna and 50 Cent.

Now in his twelfth year working with SandBlast, Shane provides award- winning post-production mixing, sound design, original music and foley for clients like SNL, Spike, ESPN, SYFY, HBO and Showtime.  When he’s not in the studio he can be found at a number of NYC venues DJing under the name Victor Loveless.

 

MELANIE COULTHER

As a graduate of Full Sail University, with a B.S. in Recording Arts, Melanie’s ten years experience in the industry began with cleaning  studios & bathrooms, re-stocking the refrigerator, and coffee runs as an intern at multiple studios.  Her early experience started with editing drum tracks, recording local bands, and live mixing at local venues in NJ.

When the opportunity to do freelance mixing, sound design, and foley for a handful of animations and independent projects came along, she knew she found her passion in the wonderful world of Audio Post Production.  Over the years, along with assisting, editing, mixing, foley + VO recording, she has worked with Video Editing, Scheduling and the more technical side of Post-Production.

Now the Director of Operations for Sandblast Productions, Melanie’s experience has been vital to understanding the workflow and demands of projects from start to finish.

JOHN CRENSHAW

When I was growing up, there was always music, whether it was on the stereo or someone picking up one of the many musical instruments in the house. There was also a tape recorder and microphones for all the kids to play with.  I was the luckiest boy in the world, and one of those recordings was recently released on Jack White’s Third Man Records.

I moved to NYC when I was 18, worked for a rehearsal studio/construction company and attended The Institute of Audio Research in the Village. When my brother Marshall signed with Warner Brothers, I quit the job and school to join his band, first as a roadie and, later, to play percussion, keyboards and vocals.  After touring for a few years, I got a job at Howard Schwartz Recording working with Rankin and Bass on their TV series Thunder Cats, directing sessions, helping with last minute re-writes, going over storyboards, character voices, and musical compositions.  I went on to work on two more cartoon series for Rankin and Bass: Silverhawks and The Comic Strip.

Some years later, I joined Mike Ungar and Ralph Kelsey at Broadway Sound, where I took the things I had learned as a musician, producer, and engineer and combined them to  create a fun and productive niche in the world of Audio Post.  My various, somewhat odd experiences have given me the ability to mix, sound design, compose, and perform on countless projects through out my career. I have won several awards and an Emmy nomination for my work.

 

DIRIKI MACK

Diriki has worked over the years at major production and post-production facilities in both NYC and L.A. as a music producer, artist developer, audio mixer/sound designer, and voiceover talent. Some of his clients include the National Basketball Association, ESPN, Ford Motors, Showtime Networks, MTV Networks and Russell Simmons presents Def Poetry, for which he created the show open.  He has loaned his talents to various independent films and Emmy nominated documentaries, while working with many talented artists including Mos Def, will.i.am, Public Enemy, Malcolm-Jamal Warner, comedian Shang Forbes, and Tony Award winning poet Poetri.

Diriki started a production company, Fuzion Entertainment, with his music partner in order to control the distribution of the music and video properties they were creating. The company recorded and released album projects, self-produced music videos, and also wrote and produced for many independent artists, television networks and music service companies. Fuzion has grown to also include talent development and media divisions.

Diriki graduated from New York Institute of Technology with a B.F.A. in Communication Arts with concentrations in Media Production and Advertising.  He then went on to work at RCA Records; partnering with the team in the A&R department to help manage album and remix projects for many artists including Michael Jackson, SWV, and the Wu-Tang Clan.

Diriki has created an impressive blend of art and business; on one hand staying true to his unique sound and vision, and on the other having the ability to stay on the cutting edge of the business while being involved in a multitude of exciting projects.

 

KEVIN MCELLIGOTT

Music and Sound have always been my passion. I grew up in a musical family, my brothers and I obsessed with all things Rock and Roll. I had the great fortune to work with some super-talented musicians while chasing my Rock and Roll dream. I was attending the Institute of Audio Research years ago, while in the studio with future Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Tommy Ramone and I asked him about pursuing my dream of being a recording engineer. His advice, “Get into jingles or advertising. You can have a great career and a normal life”.

I followed his advice and have had a very rewarding career, winning NY Emmy and ProMax Gold Awards, among others. I love what I do, whether it’s a 5 second ID or a 5 minute Upfront reel, and give 100 percent every time out to make things better than envisioned. Bouncing ideas back and forth with Creatives is a blast, and brings out some really fun and rewarding work.

I am honored to work with such clients as Syfy, USA Network, Nickelodeon, Comedy Central, Nick Jr, NickMom, Food Network, Chiller, MTV, VH1, CBS, A&E, and Lifetime.

NICK DUKE

Nick Duke is a music producer and audio engineer, with a B.A. in Music and Sound Recording from the University of New Haven. Working primarily with MIDI and audio recordings, he enjoys blending diverse genres and media. Beyond mixing and creating original music, Nick also works with visual arts such as graphic design, web design, photography, and painting.