Mixing is an art and good mixing is a huge factor in why you like the music you like. It is a craft to be honed over time and improved upon little by little.
The reason I started a remote bass recording service was to be able to offer people around the world access to a professional bass player at a reasonable cost. The bass is an important element in any piece of music and I’ve enjoyed playing on hundreds of tracks over the last few years.
I had years of music lessons from a young age but all my mixing skills have been learned via books and online resources. I’d like to share a few here. Getting your tracks mixed professionally is one of the best ways to make your music sound pro and stick out from the crowd.
However, sometimes budgets don’t allow for a pro mixing engineer and sometimes you’ll know what you want better than anyone else.
But do you really know how to create that sound you have in your head?
These are a few of the best resources I know of to learn about the beautiful art of mixing and producing music.
The Recording Revolution
Graham Cochrane’s highly successful blog is a treasure trove of useable advice. He has a free newsletter and a great YouTube channel. I’ve bought a couple of his mixing courses and those alone are great primers to make sure you’re not making the common beginner mistakes and that you’re actually in control of your mix. I recommend his REthink Mixing course. Graham is a brilliant teacher and talks a lot about the mindset side of mixing as well as the techniques and tips to create radio ready mixes.
Dave Pensado is a Grammy award winning mixing engineer to the stars. He started a podcast a few years ago and I became obsessed with it! He has such a passion for music and mixing that he really gets you to understand what is important and why. He interviews mixing engineers and artists and gets their favourite techniques, plugins and gear. You end up listening in to hundreds of conversations with top pros sharing all their knowledge. The same philosophies and tips end up in many of the conversations and once you recognise these you can start to use them in your mixes.
The Mixing Engineer’s Handbook
If you only had to get one book on mixing, get this one by Bobby Owsinski. There are plenty of other good books but this one explains everything you need to know and is great to have on hand for reference.
Produce Like A Pro
Warren Huart has recorded the likes of Korn and Aerosmith and is another top pro who has started to share his vast knowledge. He runs a website with loads of info and some paid courses. I haven’t taken one of those but I have devoured some of the content on his excellent YouTube channel. He teaches mixing, recording, engineering and mastering.
We live in one of the most amazing musical eras of all time in that everyone can produce music from their own home. That has lead to more music than ever – some of it bad! But some of the good stuff that has come out of amateur studios is nothing short of incredible and this is often down to collaborations around the world and – most definitely – a great sounding mix.
Check out some of these resources and start using the tips straight away in your own mixes and hear the results. Even if you improve your mixing skills just a tiny bit, you will inevitably improve your music. Doing this consistently over time will hone your craft to the point where you’re producing mixes you can be really proud of.
Comment below if you have any other useful mixing and recording resources.