Hawon Jung - OWNER/Engineer/Mixer
If you ask people who know Hawon well to describe him, you’d probably hear the following: “Passionate music lover, audio engineer, tech savvy (meaning a total tech geek), gear and gadget junkie, and overall, a great guy to know”. They might also add: “Genius”. (note: he did not write this, he’s actually embarrassed of this, but he is a genius)
Hawon received his BA in Recording Industry Music Production & Technology from Middle Tennessee State University. He also received his M.A.M. in Business & Entrepreneurship from Columbia College in Chicago.
He, along with Mark, founded Sound Vault Studios in 2016. Hawon designed the layout, gear selection, wiring and acoustics of the studio. Ask him anything about the patchbay, console or Pro Tools and he will immediately know the answer. From a recording standpoint, Hawon loves to record instruments, bands, or bands playing instruments. If there’s not a band to record, anything musical will benefit from his tuned ears and knowledge of which microphone sounds best on what you’re recording. When he is mixing, his passion really shines through. Versed in almost every genre, Hawon will give your music life, space and allow it to breathe. If he didn’t have an amazing wife and 2 children, Hawon would live in the studio. Maybe he does already? We’ll always wonder…
Dan Wean - Studio manager/producer/engineer
Dan is the man. Dan’s a music fan. OK, enough already… Dan is the one you talk to when you want to plan your project. He’ll also work up a budget, schedule, and pretty much do anything for you… Pretty much… He’s also known to sit behind the controls from time to time and put on his Producer hat too. Dan joined Sound Vault Studios in the spring of 2017 and he can’t wait to help you plan your project!
Dan Wean got his start in the studio business working with wunderkind Sean O’Keefe and managing his Rosebud Studios in the early 2000s. His help in organizing and scheduling sessions for the debut and acclaimed Fall Out Boy album “Take This To Your Grave” were a quick and exciting initiation into the business. From 2002-2007 Dan was at the helm of Chicago’s legendary Gravity Studios working with owner/producer Doug McBride (Veruca Salt, Badly Drawn Boy), Manny Sanchez (Umphrey’s McGee, Patrick Stump) Sean O’Keefe (Fall Out Boy, Plain White T’s), Richard Perry (Harry Nilsson, Ringo Starr, Carly Simon) as well as helping on sessions with Rod Stewart, Rise Against, Ben Kweller, Hawthorne Heights, Oh My God, and The Walkmen among others. This era of Gravity produced countless major label & indie albums, and overall excellent sounding projects. Many of the interns and assistant engineers who went through Gravity’s ranks became highly respected Producers & Engineers with Dan’s help. Since his Gravity days, Dan has been making his rounds to every corner of the music industry from selling vintage guitars at the Chicago Music Exchange to being a guitar technician on the road and helping with repairs for bands like Wilco and the Jayhawks among others. Throughout it all, he’s a listener and a musician first. As a guitarist/songwriter, and one half of the O’Neill & Wean duo, he writes, records and plays most of the instruments on their recordings. He also spent some time in the original lineup of Van Ghost, Chicago promoter (& North Coast Festival Founder) Michael Berg’s All-Star roots/rock project. He played guitar, produced and engineered their debut album, “Melodies For Lovers” in 2009. Dan is constantly looking for better tones, vibe & inspiration and believes that music truly makes the world a better place. Oh, and he is a Beatles collector… yeah, one of those guys!
Mark Sobot – Owner & Producer
Mark is our fearless leader. Although he has a degree in mechanical engineering from Southern Illinois University his first love has always been music. Analyzing the credits of his favorite LPs growing up, he took note of where the great records were being recorded and who worked on them. Naturally, the guitar came next, then a band, finally a recording session. Drawn to the console and what the engineer was doing, the dream was founded. In 2016, Sound Vault Studios opened it’s doors, realizing years of work and planning. This is Mark’s baby, everything he wanted it to be. A fan of all genres of music, Heavy Metal is what Mark listens to and plays most of the time, quiz him on the classic metal years, early Metallica or any of the guitar gods and you’re in for quite a ride! Mark spends as much time as he can at Sound Vault, working with his band Ruthless Vision, tending to duties behind the scenes, or popping in on your session for a listen and some advice. Mark is a guitar tone wizard and he can help you produce an amazing sounding project.