Jake Niceley

Jake began his career as a musician and actor in 1977 and rapidly became one of the most sought-after recording studio designers and independent recording engineers in the nation. For more than 20 years, he co-owned and operated recording studios in Branson, MO, Peoria, IL, and Nashville, TN, including the famed Woodland Studios, Seventeen Grand Recording and The Love Shack. Under his ownership, Seventeen Grand emerged as one of the first surround mixing studios in 1998, after being designed and outfitted by Jake from the ground up. His studios have played creative home to a legion of stars, among them Alison Krauss, The Dixie Chicks, Dolly Parton, Kenny Chesney, Johnny Cash, George Jones, Bob Seger, Garth Brooks, Shania Twain, Patty Loveless, and Martina McBride.

Jake has earned nearly a dozen television and film credits for soundtrack recordings, including Men Seeking Women (Showtime), Elvis Meets Nixon (Showtime), The Water Boy (Touchstone Films), Loretta Lynn tracks for King Of The Hill (Fox) and for Happily Ever After (HBO), Faith Hill tracks for Austin City Limits (PBS), Donna Summer music bed tracks for television advertising commercials (McDonald’s), and Emmylou Harris tracks (A&E).

His sound engineering credits span musical genres and include projects for Alabama, Take 6, Orleans, Bela Fleck, Jill Sobule, Collin Raye, Mindy McCready, The Osmond Brothers, Randy Travis, Roy Clark, Andy Williams, and Pat Boone among others. He is a two-time winner of the prestigious SMA (Surround Music Awards) trophy for Best Concert Video in 2003 and the Horizon award in 2005, and winner of the New Orleans Off Beat magazine Album Of The Year award for the short film Deacon John’s Jump Blues.

Jake began as a musician/entertainer at the Silver Dollar City theme park in Branson, Missouri, a city that was building and branding itself as a viable entertainment and tourist destination and growing exponentially at that time. He spent 10 years with Herschend Family Entertainment Corporation which owns Silver Dollar City, a move that proved itself creative, productive and beneficial, and during which time his role expanded to include various corporate responsibilities such as Assistant Construction Manager, Sound Technician, and Entertainment Supervisor. He remains on-call today for this organization as a sound designer and theatrical consultant and is recognized for his sound design work on the park’s award-winning musical stage production “Headin’ West."

Concurrent with his years at Silver Dollar City, Jake was appointed to the Supervisor of Operations position for the 1982 World’s Fair in Knoxville, TN, after which he purchased his first recording studio. Jake served on the Appalachain State University advisory board during the development of their recording studio facilities and the SAE (School of Audio Engineering) advisory board when the educational institution for creative media technologies opened facilities in the U.S. He taught classes for SAE in both Nashville and New York, and has been solicited frequently to conduct guest lectures on the topics of surround sound, mixing techniques, the DVD audio format and studio management. He has conducted such lectures for MTSU (Middle Tennessee State University), SAE at the organization’s school in Glasgow, Scotland, and the European AES convention in Paris, France.

He was one of the key authors of the “Master Delivery Standard" adopted by NARAS (National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences) and AES (Audio Engineering Society), now required by most major record labels and part of Belmont University’s educational curriculum. He also developed a pro-audio “White Paper" with MTSU instructor Doug Mitchell that was published in the AES journal. Jake was selected by Daytona State College in 2008 to design, and ultimately Chair, the Music Production and Technology program, which included overseeing the design and building of the recording studios, labs, and specially-equipped classrooms at the News-Journal Center where the program is housed. 

In addition to his academic and program management work with Daytona State College Jake continues to work as a professional audio engineer and sound designer.  His most current work includes award-winning documentary films for American University in Washington, DC and the U.S. State Department and U.S. Department of Commerce.

Jake Niceley is:

  • Recording Engineer
  • Producer
  • Systems Consulting & Training
  • Studio Management & Engineering
  • Surround Sound Mixing for DVD
  • Film & TV
  • SAE Advisory Board Member & Teacher
  • Producers & Engineers Wing Board Member (NARAS)
  • 2003 Surround Music Award's Winner for Best Concert Video
  • Front of House Engineering


2004-2008 Jake Niceley Engineering & Consulting
Independent Recording Engineer/Producer
Audio systems, Sound Design & Theatrical consultant

1995-2004 Seventeen Grand Recording – Nashville, TN
Studio Manager, co-owned and managed all day-to-day operations and served as in-house recording engineer

1989-1995 Woodland Recording Studio – Nashville, TN
Studio Manager, co-owned and managed all day-to-day operations and served as in-house recording engineer


Jake Niceley is
an award winning audio engineer and sound designer, as well as
Associate Professor at
Daytona State College.

To contact Jake, email him at jake@jakeniceley.com.