I recently realized that I did not know the music mixing techniques I thought I did and when I first started music production I learnt the hard way. I searched about for music production tips and music mixing online, during this time I found many opposing ideas that left me even more confused.
I am glad I did learn in the end though as I always thought there was something I was missing. I was right about that of course but I was looking in the wrong area; I thought it was with my song writing ability but the truth was I did know how to produce music. Here are a music mixing tips to consider and help you when you are mixing and recording music.
Write and record before doing any mixing – Before you start mixing make sure that the whole track is recorded (by you or someone else). This is rule number one on how to produce music. You cannot start to mix a track before it is finished as that would be like trying to decorate the insides of a house when the roof is not on yet. If you do start to mix a track before it is has finished being written it will never be finished because when you are writing you need to consider certain things and when mixing you consider different things. These two conflicting priorities will pull you right and left. If you are/have been doing this there is a good chance you are trying to use effects to mask a poorly written song or you need to learn and understand some basic music theory to pave a solid path forward. It is worth mentioning that you could be in need of some extra music production tips if you are having these problems when you do have a finished track
Always fix any problems with what has been recorded at the time of recording – If you are recording something or have been given a track from someone and you can hear that there is a problem somewhere in the track it is very important that this problem is rectified before going into the mixing process. It is important to set solid and clear boundaries between recording and mixing, I would say this is one of the golden rules that sits highly on the music production tips list. If you have just recorded a guitar part and something is not sitting quite right, maybe a note clash or something drops out of time briefly, fix it instantly. Either find a note that does not clash or re-record that specific bar around or in between the rest which works. Do not leaving it till the mix.
Arrange your environment before you start – Before you sit down and start to mix a track it is important to get everything arms reach and make sure you have everything needed out and close to hand. This may not be one of the most helpful music mixing techniques but it is important for concentration. It is no good if you have to keep getting up and going through cupboards looking for specific boxes or needing to use something only to find that you do not have the right cable or batteries.
Another thing to consider is R.S.I, this is very common if you are working on the computer and it is important to make certain adjustments to reduce the chances of this.