pick the right mix engineer
You worked hard on your music, and recording can be a difficult and emotional process as well as one of the most amazing things ever – creating a brand new piece of art that will, hopefully – be around forever! There is nothing like the feeling of sharing that with others, also – it’s part of you as an artist.
So, everything’s finished, and now it’s time to mix. Maybe you recorded in a nice recording studio, a project studio, or perhaps even yourself at home like many do! Yes, there are a million YouTube tutorials, courses, Facebook groups and other resources to help you to learn to mix ( it’s fun!) but there is only one way to get any good – and that is to actually mix. And these days being good is not enough. You need to be great, as there is more music released than ever, and most of it sounds… average. Most things sound good, until you compare them to a commercial release! You need to stand out.
Do you have time to get great, or do you want to work on being a great artist? As an artist you probably have a dozen things to do. Songs to write, rehearsals to attend, gigs to book, Social media to update, shows to play, PR to chase, the list is endless. That’s why pretty much every successful artist works with professionals to get the job done.
Meanwhile, someone like me is mixing every day, all day concentrating one one thing – making great sounding tracks for people just like you. It’s my passion, and my entire reputation depends on how good a job I do for you. My success is based entirely on your success – and that’s how your potential mix engineer should be thinking.
There are also hundreds of people on the internet advertising mixing services, as let’s face it, these days – all you need is a computer, monitors, an interface and off you go! online mixing and mastering , yes and no.
That’s why when you choose a mixing engineer for your project you should do a little research. First – what have they done?
You are more likely to be successful with someone who has already proved that they can mix successful records. Anyone can download multitracks from the net and make a portfolio ( you can download Bohemian Rhapsody if you want…) but what have they done that has been released? Check their portfolio first. You can be good – but still not fit!
Do they fit with your style? It’s all very well being great at heavy metal but do you really want a metal guy mixing your Americana project? In the old days of working in studios, we DID work on many many genres and styles as it was our job to work on whatever came through the door, but it’s doubtful that most people these days have that experience. It’s perhaps worth asking for a test mix before you commit to doing your whole record. Many people will do that for you if you ask.
Can they communicate with you effectively? Music is art, and in this case YOUR art, so you want someone who will worth with you to achieve your vision. There’s a lot of ego involved sometimes, but a great engineer understands it’s YOUR music, and they are there to serve your needs as well as provide excellent skills, and ideally constructive input to make something better than you would have on your own.
Hiring the right mix engineer for your project can be a great tool to make your music the best it can be, save you time, and even money – often far more affordable than you imagined. The bottom line is can you afford for your music to be released and sound average, or even worse not ever released perhaps because you believed wasn’t quite there?
Invest the time in finding the right partner for your project and reap the rewards. In the meantime, happy music making and I wish you all the success in the world!