With over 10 years of game development experience in audio for award winning games, and over 17 years as a professional musician/composer, Steve Pardo creates, produces, and directs emotional and expansive music and audio for games and interactive media.
From start to finish, Steve works independently and with his team at SkewSound to complete original scores for interactive and linear media. He is a recognized composer (ASCAP), multi-instrumentalist, producer, orchestrator, and music engineer. Out of his home studio in Nashville, TN, Steve can write, orchestrate, perform, work with instrumentalists, mix, and master finished and prepared music for in-game use and linear work. From there, he can collaborate with studios and teams, implementing directly into audio middleware (Wwise/FMOD) and the game engine (Unity/Unreal) when called for.
His in-depth and innovative work with interactive and generative music systems at Harmonix Music Systems absolutely inspires the way he writes, all while focusing on melody and texture first as a solid foundation for each project's narrative direction, design, and art.
Steve has composed the interactive soundtrack for a wide range of games, including as Gigantic, Grim Dawn, Chariot, Fated, Super Beat Sports, The Magic Circle, Fantasia: Music Evolved, and many others. He provides original scored music for upcoming original content with providers such as Netflix and HBO.
Steve served as Lead Composer and Sound Designer at Harmonix Music Systems, known for such renowned award winning and cultural watershed games and franchises such as Guitar Hero, Rock Band, The Beatles: Rock Band, and Dance Central. Steve continues to provide part-time audio leadership and content support as a remote contractor.
With his audio direction work on Rock Band VR (Harmonix/Oculus), he has become a leading audio designer for virtual reality and generative music systems (US patent for "Improvised Guitar Simulation"), while rethinking the possibilities for the music game genre. His work was documented in the Sound on Sound interview, Steve Pardo: Creating Rock Band VR (nominated for "Best Game Audio Article, Publication, or Broadcast" - GANG Awards 2017).
Steve has been recognized for his audio design and direction work with nominations for Rock Band VR ("Best VR Audio" - GANG Awards 2017) and for Super Beat Sports ("Best Sound Design for a Casual/Social Game" - GANG Awards 2017).
Steve is incredibly active in the game audio community at large. He taught classes on game audio and music design at MIT and the Berklee College of Music, and has given talks NYU and Boston Post Mortem. He currently serves on the Industry Advisory Board for the Sound Arts MA program at Northwestern University, and is responsible for launching Belmont University’s first game audio class, which he started in 2019.
Outside of game audio, Steve is also an active and performing/recording saxophone and clarinet player. He currently leads his own group, the Steve Pardo Trio.
Steve produces mostly instrumental folk music with Amy Pardo, his wife and talented flute player/composer, under the name Tweet Tweet. They released their first album, The Bearer, in 2017.
Steve continues to collaborate with his talented sister-in-law Lindley Cameron on various folk and indie rock projects under varying names and band names. They released two indie rock albums, Fairytale Thankyou (2008) and Come Home (2012), as well as making appearances on game soundtracks such as Fantasia: Music Evolved.
Music where he is the sole contributor is released under the name Amazing Talking Penguins. He plays electric guitar and woodwinds with folk group Opal Puckett, producing both of their two albums, Opal Puckett EP and Hymns. He also played electric guitar and keys with the Boston-based indie rock band Spirit Kid from 2010-2012.
Feel free to get in touch at any time. Steve is always looking to collaborate and work on new and exciting projects.