Three weeks ago I decided to get into music mixing and today I ‘finished’ my first mix. I put the word ‘finished’ in quotes, since any creative project is never truly finished. There is always more to tweak and polish.
Anyway, for now I am quite happy with the result of this first project, though it is nowhere near a professional level, as you will hear.
Selecting the song
Since I am no musician, I first had to find the music tracks to mix. After looking around a little bit I the perfect multitrack (as a collection of the individual tracks of a song is called) on YouTube.
The Produce like a pro published a review of the Audient iD14 MKII audio interface, which happens to be the audio interface we use for recording the KENSO podcast.
Anyway, they used the interface to record the song Hold On To Me At The End Of The Night by Steve Maggiora and offer the multitrack to their subscribers.
The editing process
Before starting this edit, I had already read and watched quite some material about music editing, so I had a rough idea on the steps involved in this process. I learned about gain staging, drum EQ and compression, how to solve ‘muddy’ mixes and the use of sidechain compression.
Of course, this was all theoretical knowledge, which I had never applied in a real project. And that turned out to be a lot harder than I thought.
My main problem was that my ears are simply not trained to hear the subtle differences in the music. That obliged my to do a lot of work in soloed out tracks, something most expert recommend not doing because it’s better to work on the complete mix.
Anyway, the mix is now at a point where I think it is quite good and, as promised, I will share the results here.
OK, here we go. I could not find any copyright notice in the downloaded files, but the song is available on all platforms, si I assume I am not allowed to publish the final mix here. However, I hope it is fine if I share just a fragment of the song.
This is what the original tracks sound like. I simple added them all together and did not any processing.
And here is my mix:
And finally, this is the same fragment from the final, professionally mixed, release:
As you can notice, I have been able to improve the unprocessed files significantly, but my mix is still less clear and more muddy than the professional mix.
And that is alright, since my goal is to learn and improve over time.
Now let’s find the next song to edit.