I remember back when music production to me was a bit of a nightmare; I would have written some really nice songs that I was proud of, I would feel quite happy, but then I would feel a pang of frustration as I knew that when I started mixing them, they would start to sound bad and I could not get my songs to sound the way I wanted them to. I would then end up hating my much loved songs. This is why I have come up with some music production tips to consider before you start to mix a song of yours or someone else’s for the first time.
Make sure you listen to different types of music – Listening to a wide variety of genres can really improve your mixing/listening skills and also your writing and theory skills. If you listen to the same genre of music your ears can get used to certain things that are present within specific genres. That is what puts a certain type of music into a certain genre. If you hear opposed to listen to the music you will pick up many music mixing tips that you would not have if you listened to one form of music only. You do not need to like EVERY form of music but just try and listen to some that are distinctly different from each other to improve your music mixing techniques.
Re-arrange your ‘space’ before you start to mix – Get everything that you know you are going to use in the right place; the right place being very close to you. There is nothing more time consuming and distracting than having to find, fix or fiddle with something that is unprepared. This tip will not answer the question: How do I produce music? It is an important piece of knowledge though and it won’t be taught in music production school or the University of Music; it is something you have to learn yourself. Plan and prepare everything involved and then you will find you have more time to do what you have to do. I am not just talking about furniture either I am also talking about audio files and folders on your hard drive being organised, having enough space on your hard drive and having all the software/hardware working perfectly before you start.
You must be a realist when it comes to mixing/writing – Base your goals upon your skills and equipment. Do not be expecting to have a studio quality track or album. Unless of course, you have been into a studio. Even then, you will not have a budget that certain bands have but this is a normal process normal. Do not make yourself homeless by buying a piece of equipment expecting it to transform your recordings. The word demo pretty much means ‘rough, the best I could do with the equipment I have at this time’ if the song is good it will show.
You need to stick at it and pick up music production tips along the way; finding one source that you know is good and a style you like is the best place to start.