Meet the Producers

The producers of the Song of America share one common goal… they are supremely passionate about music. Each in his own way brings excellence to what he does, whether it is working behind the console, leading a studio session, or selecting material and recruiting talent.

Ed Pettersen

Ed Pettersen is a recording artist, songwriter, and producer, dividing his time between his own musical endeavors and those of his fellow artists. As the mastermind behind the Song of America, Pettersen spent nine years developing the project and bringing together the team that created this unique and ambitious series of recordings. Pettersen brought his innate ability to lead by example, a talent for arranging, and his considerable engineering experience to the role of studio producer for the Song of America, with responsibility for hands on production of twenty-five of the fifty tracks on the compilation. In addition to the Song of America, Pettersen’s production credits include Liz Graham, Rosasharn, Scott Kempner, Freedy Johnston, and Kenzie Wetz.

As an independent recording artist, Pettersen has charted on the Gavin Americana Radio chart (back when there was a Gavin chart), had a single on the Country Line Dance charts, and been embraced by the folk audience for his topical acoustic music. Wayne Robins, writing about Pettersen’s latest release The New Punk Blues, notes “When he's sharp, he's very sharp, in the vein of John Prine, Robert Earl Keen and Elvis Costello”. Pettersen’s songs are starting to be recognized and recording by a variety of well respected artists including blues legend Bettye LaVette, hit songwriter Buzz Cason, and Americana favorite Thad Cockrill, as well as debut soul artist Kenzie Wetz.

To learn more about Ed and his music, please visit his website at

David Macias

David Macias launched his career in music via the retail trade, his earliest job in the record industry selling music in a record store. Macias went on to build an impressive marketing career with major label Arista Records, starting in Atlanta and ending his fourteen year Arista career as Senior Director of Sales and Marketing at Arista Nashville. In 2002 Macias launched his own music marketing company Emergent Music Marketing with partner Deb Markland, marketing and distributing top independent labels and artists such as Compadre Records, Beth Nielsen Chapman, The Avett Brothers, James McMurtry, and Jake Shimabukuro. Macias also spearheaded a special project for Emergent in partnership with American Roots Publishing to release Beautiful Dreamer: The Songs of Stephen Foster, a compilation that went on to win the Grammy for Best Traditional Folk Album in 2005. In was the non-profit nature of the Stephen Foster project that led the creators of Song of America to invite Macias to join the project as a co-producer and tap Emergent, later renamed Thirty Tigers, to distribute the project.

Bob Olhsson

Bob Olhsson started in pro audio when he was 16. Facilitated by a brand new driver's license, he showed up one Saturday on the doorstep of United Sound in Detroit. A hundred Saturdays (and burgers) later Olhsson had his first job in a studio. At the time United Sound was the largest ndependent studio in Detroit and Olhsson’s audio education was enriched by listening to discussions among the engineers in the United Sound shop, and watching artists like George Clinton, Johnny Taylor and Barbara Lewis record hit records. It was the guys at United Sound that suggested Olhsson go to a recording studio he had never heard of to look for a job after his first year in college. And so a year later as a nineteen year old Olhsson joined one of the most creative and unique recording environments ever: Motown Records. At Motown Olhsson started as a mastering intern and later moved into the recording studio, working on hit records for Stevie Wonder, Marvin Gaye, and a host of other legendary Motown artists.

Olhsson’s interest in working with rock bands grew out of working with Motown’s Rare Earth, followed by work with a veritable Whose Who of the leading British rock producers from the 1960s. And when it became obvious Motown was leaving Detroit, Olhsson moved to San Francisco where his west coast adventures included everything from classical albums for Harmonia Mundi to Quicksilver Messenger Service, and the Grateful Dead. In 1991 Olhsson immersed himself in digital audio and moved into mastering with a natural progression into work in film, video, and multimedia. As an early adopter of digital editing for motion picture post production and surround sound, Olhsson worked with Andy Wiskes to introduce the gang at Skywalker Ranch to Digidesign. An audiophile extraordinaire, Olhsson’s encyclopedic knowledge of recording hardware and software, audio electronics, mic-ing techniques, and mastering skills contributed greatly to the overall sound quality of the Song of America.

Bob Olhsson offers his audio expertise and mastering services through Bob Olhsson Audio and also masters at Georgetown Masters in Nashville, TN.