David Pietila

Sales Lead

David began playing music at age 9 with the French horn. Since then, he has picked up various instruments including guitar, ocarina, trumpet, mellophone, etc. He entered college majoring in Japanese Language and minoring in music. While at college he took his first music recording class and discovered his passion for music production. Throughout his collegiate career he studied theories and engineering techniques. In December of 2015, David graduated college with Music Business/Recording Technology major and a Japanese minor. His primary instrument was classical guitar.

Starting with talent shows and library gigs, David has been in many bands, playing lots of styles. David currently plays in a metal band he co-founded, Shield the Survivors, and an acoustic duo, Lucid.

Since graduation, David has been working on his own studio called, SourceTrack Studio. He has recorded/mixed several artists in styles including rock, jazz, rap, metal, acoustic, pop, alt rock, indie, and more. Working at Pixel Pro Audio, he has learned about the newest technology in the industry and is building his arsenal. SourceTrack Studio currently has a Yamaha PM-1000 console, a Focusrite Clarett 8PreX interface, and a few extra outboard preamps and compressors. His favorite piece of gear is the 1176 because, “it makes everything sound better.”

In his free time, David enjoys working on old cars. He is currently restoring a 1953 Packard 300 in hopes to show it off at local car shows.

Ben Thomack

Sales and Support

Ben’s first immersion into music was beginning trumpet lessons and playing in the middle school band. He continued trumpet through middle school, but his interest waned come high school when he became drawn to the guitar. He played guitar mostly informally for several years only taking some basic lessons. He formed his first band, a hardcore band called Dawn of the Final Day, during this period.

He then took classical guitar lessons preparing for an entrance audition to UW-Oshkosh. After being accepted he studied Music Business and Recording Technology. Here he studied classical guitar under Charles Combe and Matt Miller as well as recording technology under Wally Messner. He also performed with the University Choir. During his college years he taught guitar lessons both at the Neenah YMCA and independently.

Ben interned at Pixel Pro Audio and was later hired on. He enjoys being surrounded by all kinds of incredible gear, still learning new things about recording, and being involved in a music community.

He is currently playing with a shoegaze/indie band, Karate School, and working on his solo post-rock project, Traces. Ben enjoys woodworking and creating things in his free time and always has some kind of project in the works. He has built an electric guitar, restored an old radio speaker and transforming it into a small guitar amp, and turned an old drum set into an electronic set among many other things.

Taylor Kreuter

Operations Manager

Two years ago Taylor started building his own recording studio, The Lamping Room, at his residence. And armed with the help and knowledge of working here at Pixel Pro Audio, he is currently producing two independent podcast programs.

Taylor has had three main jobs since he started working at 16, each of them leading to management positions. The first was a food restaurant as assistant/night manager for three and a half years. The second was Shipping/Receiving manager at a printing company for 9 years, then moving onto estimating for a year. Now he’s the operations overseer and logistical guru here at Pixel Pro Audio.

Taylor gladly admits, “music is a huge part of my life in all facets. This job and this place fits perfectly with my lifestyle, interests, and passions.”

Chris Van Den Berg

Web Manager & Purchasing

Chris has had a varied career over the past 25 years, with experiences in sales, customer service, graphic design, and website technologies. In 2012 Chris brought his skills and expertise to Pixel Pro Audio where he has helped shape the course of the business and it’s online presence. Having very little experience with professional audio before this, he has quickly learned and adapted to the MI industry and the products that influence the art of recording. His knowledge of the products and manufacturers, combined with his previous sales experience, have helped Chris become an integral part of the business and it’s relationships with vendors and customers.

When he gets time off, Chris loves to go outdoors and explore nature, dabble in photography, play video games, geek out with synthesizers, and spend time with his family.

James Lison

President

After high school I meandered around to some college classes, not finding inspiration or enthusiasm for the things being taught. I eventually realized the only thing I truly loved doing was recording. More than playing bass and guitar, I really enjoyed recording and the creativity that can be expressed as a producer/engineer. I convinced my parents to help cover some of the cost of attending Full Sail in Winter Park Florida. I went, I loved it, and I soaked up everything I could there.

While attending Full Sail, I fell in love with my future wife, Keali (Hawk) who lived back in Wisconsin. Now I had two loves, and some tough choices. There was not a huge recording market in Neenah, WI. Regardless, I knew Keali was “the one”, and so I decided I wasn’t going to pass on love for anything. That decided, I knew of only one truly great recording studio in Wisconsin at the time, and that was Butch Vig’s Smart Studios in Madison, WI. I convinced them to give me an interview and bring me on as an unpaid intern upon graduation. In 1998 I graduated from Full Sail and moved to Madison to work at Smart. I went from intern to hired engineer quickly, and worked there for the next year. After working 80 to 100 hour work weeks, and pouring everything I had into the studio, loving every minute of it, I realized that the studio business was in trouble, and traditional recording studios were going to suffer greatly. The advent of computer recording changed the equation for the studio business, and it was obvious to me that studios that were dependent on recording local artists to keep the doors open, would not last long as the technology got more powerful and cheaper. Sadly, Smart closed it’s doors about 10 years later. When you no longer need $50,000 worth of equipment to make a demo, and could do the same thing or better for $1000, shelling out $2000 to $6000 for a demo is a tough proposition for most local artists. Why do that when you can spend $2000 and record your band for as long as you want, whenever you want with often better results?

Upon quitting Smart I married Keali and moved back to Neenah, WI. I started my own project studio, knowing it would be supplemental income, worked odd jobs, and worked freelance at a few local studios over the next 5-6 years. In 2003 I started Pixel Pro Audio. At the time it didn’t have a name. I started buying cool gear, keeping a lot of it, selling some of it, and realized I could make some money doing that. By the end of 2003 I had quit all other jobs and devoted myself to my new business.

I hired my first employee in 2009 (Taylor Kreuter). At that time we were called Fox River Electronics. Hiring Taylor took the business to the next level, and we grew rapidly. The following year we moved the business to a retail location, changed the name of the business to Pixel Pro Audio and hired Chris Van Den Berg to take over web design and management. Around 2010 we started carrying new products to compliment our awesome used selection. Now we primarily sell new gear, though we still have a pretty awesome selection of used gear. We’ve continued to grow and expand the business adding sales staff, moving to a bigger and better located store, and a lot more since then. I love what I do, and wake up every day happy to go to work.

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