Robin Crow

This week, I had the incredible opportunity to meet with the CEO and owner of Dark Horse Recording and Dark Horse Institute, Robin Crow. With an impressive list of accomplishments, not only is Robin a music industry leader and artist with over 20 years of experience, but he is also a motivational speaker and author as well. With his sweet disposition, true professionalism and genuine passion for helping people in the music industry accomplish their goals, Robin Crow is definitely someone who is vital to the music industry. In addition to owning Dark Horse Recording, Robin also started Dark Horse Institute, which is designed to help students gain real life experiences in the music industry. Having personally faced the many obstacles of being a struggling artist in the past himself, he understands the value of getting out there and working in the industry and he provides that with Dark Horse Recording and Dark Horse Institute.

Dark Horse Recording was particularly impressive. It was built in 1993 and felt like a bit of an oasis. To say that it was beautiful would be an understatement. With its rustic charm, cathedral ceilings, beautiful landscape and a peaceful environment, it’s no wonder why big name artists and bands such as Keith Urban, Hunter Hayes, Korn, Carrie Underwood, Matchbox Twenty, Neil Diamond, Faith Hill, Taylor Swift, Evanescence (and many, many more) have flocked to Dark Horse Recording to record their albums. People from all aspects of the music recording industry have had the opportunity to record their albums or parts of their albums here, with access to some of Dark Horse Recording’s facility, staff engineers and equipment. This place is so incredible that you have to see it in person to truly appreciate the ambiance of it all.


Dark Horse Institute (which is a for-profit academy that was established in 2010) had an entirely different feel, but was equally as impressive. With students milling around and others in studios recording and mixing music, it gave me a chance to get an insider’s perspective on the actual recording process and what these students learn on a day-to-day basis. Dark Horse Institute provides multiple cost effective, short-term programs, which include a 12-week Music Business program and a 17-week Audio Engineering program. These programs give students the opportunity to truly learn how to be successful in the industry with an actual hands-on experience.

I had the opportunity to not only interview Robin Crow, but he also gave me a personal tour of the studios at Dark Horse Recording and then I made my way over to Dark Horse Institute for a tour there as well. Every single person that I encountered during my time at Dark Horse Recording and Dark Horse Institute seemed to truly love it there and were grateful for the services that are provided. I had numerous students at the institute tell me that they wished they had gone there to begin with to get all of their experience. Robin was inspired to create Dark Horse Institute when he started to notice that he was receiving students that didn’t have the skills and knowledge they needed to be truly successful in the industry. I felt that this spoke volumes about what Robin Crow has created with both Dark Horse Recording, as well as Dark Horse Institute.

We spoke about many different things in our time together, but the best advice Robin gave for people who are just starting out is: “If somebody wants to follow their passion, of course they should do that, but I always recommend somehow finding something that both you’re passionate about that you love to do, yet find an area that you can excel in… Wishful thinking is not a strategy”. Robin also stated: “I had to come to the realization that I had no business competing with these great people as a singer or as a pop writer. A lot of time people hear something on the radio and think they can do better, and I would always just implore people to somehow balance their dreams with reality.”


One of the things I respect most about Robin is the fact that although the space is large enough to hold big events, he and the staff at Dark Horse Recording truly prioritize and respect the privacy of the artists that come through their doors to work. What truly impressed me the most throughout my time with Robin on a personal level though, was his ability to connect and also make you feel at ease and well taken care of. He is absolutely one of the nicest people in the industry that I’ve met so far. My experiences with Robin Crow and the time I spent at Dark Horse Recording and Dark Horse Institute are experiences that I won’t soon forget.

If you are interested in checking out Dark Horse Recording, go to their website for more details.

If you’re interested in gaining a more hands-on experience in the music industry, be sure to also check out for more details on the programs they provide.

You can also read more about Robin Crow by visiting his website

(Photos provided by Dark Horse Recording)