Are You Frustrated by How Inconsistent Your Mixes Are? Do you Ever Wish Your Tracks Sounded More Polished?
Mixing a song is as much of an art as it is a science. But both art and science are based on fundamentals! If you haven't learned the basics, how can you hope to use the advanced stuff?
Worse, if you don't have a framework for mixing, you'll never finish your tracks. Be honest, how many half-finished, half-mixed songs are on your hard drive right now!
What if you could finish all your songs? What if you could craft unique sounding effects patches? What if you could gain the confidence, clarity, and skill needed to proudly share your finished music with your friends?
What if you could stop calling all of your best work "demos?"
When you have a framework for understanding: (1) where your mix needs improvement, (2) how to get there, and (3) what to avoid, you'll be amazed at how quickly you'll be able to create mixes that sound radio ready.
If you're fed up with the quality of your mixes, or just want to finish to finish a few songs, you need to make a change. You need to stop making it up as you go along!
Hi, I'm Evan.
I've been recording music in various home studios with for nearly 30 years. While I started out confused and overwhelmed by mixing music, after thousands of hours spent mixing hundreds of songs, I've uncovered some deeper truths about how to unleash a mix's full potential.
I run a YouTube Channel, Stock Music Musician, dedicated to helping folks learn how to make better music from their home studios. These lessons have been viewed over a million times by people all over the world. In the process of teaching so many people, I've also learned a lot about how to become a teacher and mentor.
Tracks I've mixed have been placed in TV, Movies, NPR, advertisements, and an award-wining indie horror film. Plus, my music as been streamed over a million times.
Every day I get comments from amazing producers struggling to getting the most out of Reason so they can create songs they feel proud of.
But mostly it was just regular producers try to make better music from their home studios.
When I first started making my videos, I never realized how much people were struggling to finish music they could be proud of.
At the same time, I'd get thank you messages from people who'd implemented my tips and shared how their production skills had reached a whole new level.
Hmmm. Some were struggling about with not understanding compression or gain staging, while other were getting licensing deals and releasing albums on Spotify.
I started to really ponder why some people were able to fully harness the power of mixing for amazing productions, while others were... stuck.
One-off YouTube videos & cheatsheets weren't enough to get them over the hump. How "life got in the way" and they'd keep finding the time to produce songs, but they just never quite found the time finish their tracks.
They used to get excited about talking about finally releasing an album. But after awhile they grew frustrated with their inability to achieve their artistic vision.
It's a little heartbreaking to hear how much time people spend making once they've learned the basics, but how little they have to show for it if they can't find a helpful mentor.
But don't take my word for it. This is from some one who had been trying for years to get by on his own.
And of course, there's always the occasional dude who thinks I'm Jimmy Kimmel (which I can neither confirm nor deny)...
Stumbling in the Dark for Years
It took me years to learn how mix tracks. I wasted so much time and energy not knowing what to do. And I also wasted thousands of dollars on plugins that I thought would magically make my music sound better.
For example, in the early 2000s, I tried learning to mix with just a book. That didn't work great. The book was good, but if you can't hear and see the mixing process, than it just won't do the trick.
By the late 2000s I was frustrated with the quality of my mixes, but thankful to have stumbled upon what looked like the holy grail - YouTube tutorials! Sure, I learned a lot of cool tricks on YouTube. But a good mix isn't based on cool tricks. It's based on having a solid system for executing the fundamentals. Parts of my mixes sounded better, but they weren't coherent, they weren't consistent, and they took forever to make (if I ever even finished).
It was in the mid-2010s that I started to feel frustrated with my progress, so I invested thousands of dollars in learning to mix. I took multiple online courses. I spent hours working one-on-one with a grammy-nominated multi-platinum mix engineer. I purchased mix critiques from professional full-time producers.
And that's when things started to click.
But in the process I had to overcome a lot of obstacles. Let me know if any of these sound familiar!
Learning from the wrong teachers for your skill level
I watched YouTube tutorials and purchased courses featuring some of the all time mixing greats. But I often found I couldn't get as much from them as I hoped. They were simply operating at too high of a level. Their concerns, their challenges, were not my concerns and challenges.
Let me give you an example. I took the course Mixing with Masters, which featured an in-depth series with on of the all-time greatest mix engineers ever, Al Schmitt (RIP). In the lesson, Mr. Schmitt said, "I don't really use EQ and compression. I'll just choose a different microphone or preamp, or ask the musician to play differently."
Yes - there is infinite Jedi-level wisdom in Mr. Schmitt's approach.
But it was also totally useless to me. I don't work with world-class musicians who can just change up their playing as need to avoid the need for compression. I don't have a locker of expensive microphones and preamps to sculpt the sound. I don't record in one of the finest studio spaces in the world.
Instead, I was constantly frustrated, because I really needed to learn from someone who was an intermediate level mix engineer, not a super advanced mega Jedi.
I needed to know how to approach recording in a home studio to make it consistently sound great. And I wanted to learn from a mix engineer who had recently been struggling with the same issues, so they could walk me through how they got over the hump, while it was still fresh in their minds.
I was never able to find quite what I was looking for, but, fortunately over the years (and at great expense), I was able to create a system that worked for me.
"I'm stuck. How do I decide what to do next?"
It's normal to get stuck mixing if you don't have a framework. Maybe you're stuck on which instrument to mix first. Maybe you're not sure if you should EQ or compress first. That's OK — even successful mixers get stuck.
What's bad is to stay stuck. Or to use "guessing and praying" as your way out.
If you're stuck, the solution isn’t to think it away or agonize endlessly over all the different things you should do. The solution is to have a framework, or a system in place.
Your framework will give you the answers … if you where you want your mix to go.
"There are no rules in mixing?"
Have you ever that phrase? Guess who gets to say that - advanced mixers!
When you're starting out, you absolutely need to follow the rules until you understand what each step of the process does, how each tool interacts with each other, and develop your ear enough to determine whether something is really helping the mix.
"I can't hear compression"
Mixing is hard! It takes lots of experience to learn how to use all of the tools at your disposal.
A big part about learning how to mix is learning how to hear not just compression, but EQ, saturation, reverb, etc.
Learning how to hear takes time, but it also takes education - a mentor to teach you how to listen and what to listen for.
"It takes too long to mix!"
Not if you know what you're doing!
Not if you have helpful frameworks for how to approach a mix!
Not if you understand how to use presets to help you!
Once you've got your systems in place and a solid foundation of the key mixing tools, you should be able to finish 90% of your in less than an hour. From there, you can use a couple of more hours - spread over a couple of days - to perfect your mix by listening to it in different environments (like the dreaded car test)!
"I don't have the right plugins!"
I'm not going to lie, there are some amazing plugins out there, well worth every penny. And there are some plugins out there that are total ripoffs.
But if you don't know how to use a plugin, if you don't know how to really mix, there's no point in spending another dime on plugins.
Honestly, once you know what you're doing, you can probably use your stock plugins for 80% of what you want to accomplish. From there, you can see where your limitations are, and be strategic about investing in new plugins.
But remember: knowledge always beats software.
A Great Mix is Like a Great Steak
Have you ever heard of the expression "All sizzle, no steak?" It means that something is flashy, but ultimately lacking is substance.
A lot of my students suffer from this syndrome when they're starting out. Sure, the chord changes in the song are amazing. The synth sound may be next level. But I can't hear the drums, the bass is buried in reverb, and the lead is so shrill that my ears are starting to bleed.
They've focused on the sizzle, not the steak.
So how is a great mix like a steak?
When it comes to a good steak, the most important thing is the quality of the meat.
When it comes to a mix, the most important thing is a good recording, edited to remove mistakes and correct timing issues. Pitch corrected.
The next most important thing with a steak is that it's cooked well. Not raw (unless that's your thing), but not too dried out, either.
When it comes to the mix, the cooking process involves ensuring that all of the elements of the track are balanced, that the worst frequencies are removed, and that every instrument has its own sonic space to shine.
You may also want to season the steak before/during/after cooking (I'm a fan of a simple salt & pepper dry-marinade before hand).
Similarly, you're going to want to enhance your mix with traditional tools like automation, EQ, saturation, reverb, and delay. You're not trying to create something new, rather you're trying to bring out the flavor of the steak as best you can.
Finally, you want to plate your steak and garnish it to make it look as nice as possible. Maybe add some fried onions on top or a little parsley. Sure, it's not necessary, but it makes the whole package even more appealing.
And it's the same with mixes. Once all of the fundamentals are in place, then you can have fun creating far-out transition effects, other-worldly reverbs, and psychedelic choruses. But only once the mix sounds good to begin with.
If you reverse the process or skip a step, everything will fall apart. That's why you not only need to know how to do each part of the mixing process, you need a framework to understand when to do it.
In Mixing Made Simple, You'll Learn a Foolproof System to Create Mixes that Will Blow Your Friends Away
Learning to mix can be one of the most frustrating things in music production.
There's a lot of myths about mixing out there.
There's a lot of techniques that are only appropriate for expert gurus.
But, at its core mixing is really straightforward. With the guidance of an experienced teacher to teach you what you need to know and how to apply it, you'll be amazed at how quickly you'll grasp the fundamentals of mixing.
That's why I've applied all my years of teaching and mixing to create this incredible course for beginner and intermediate mixers. With over five hours of video, you'll develop the knowledge and framework to start creating professional mixes by the end of next weekend!
I've structured the course to perfectly walk you through the mixing process, no matter where you're starting from.
- First, there are a series of lessons on fundamental mixing techniques, like subtractive EQ, compression, using busses and figuring out where to start your mix.
- Second, you'll see me create a "beginner level" mix of a song from scratch in Reason using those techniques.
- Third, there is a series of lessons teaching you more advanced techniques, like parallel processing and advanced gain staging tricks
- Fourth, you'll see me break down and advanced mix I made in Logic and walk you through everything need to take your productions to the next level.
Go at your own pace! You'll have lifetime access to these timeless lessons, so you can first watch the beginner series of lessons and mix walkthrough, practice it for a while, then turn to the more advanced techniques.
And with a half-dozen cheat sheets and reference guides, you'll be able to quickly look up key tricks and techniques without having to log in!
With a little practice, you'll be amazed and how you can transform your music from dull, lifeless mixes to punchy powerhouses in just a couple of months!
Start Making Better Mixes Today!
Mixing made simple gives you a powerful system to quickly, consistently create professional sounding songs!
"I learned more in that ten minutes than I did in the last ten years about mixing. f*******great stuff mate."
- Sean R.
Create Professional Sounding Mixes in Hours
With over 5 hours of videos and 6 powerful cheat sheets, you'll quickly grasp exactly how to approach your next mix.
Stop flying by the seat of your pants! You'll learn how to breakdown each step of the mixing process, and you'll learn the most important actions you can take to improve your mix.
Inside, you'll learn:
- Basic things like setting levels and organizing a session for maximum productivity
- How to think about EQ and compression, and make them work for you
- How to setup a clean, powerful reverb
- Using creative effects to add your unique spin to the recording
- How to add interest with automation
- How to use reference tracks to make sure you're headed in the right direction
My 100% Quality Guarantee
This course is designed to:
- teach foundational mixing skills
- build your confidence,
- save you time by teaching you how to become a more efficient producer,
- improve the quality of your music,
- and to be fun and entertaining
If you're dissatisfied for any reason, I offer a no-questions-asked 30-day money back guarantee. Just shoot me an email.
- Framework & Overview
- Mixing walkthroughs overview and how to use the course
- Understanding the mixing process
- Technical vs. creative mixing
- The importance of quality control in mixing
- The secret of how to rapidly improve at mixing
- Understanding EQ
- Basics of EQ
- Using Subtractive EQ
- Tone Shaping EQ
- Unmasking with EQ
- Foundational Mixing Skills & Strategies
- Where to start your mix
- Basics of Compression
- Creative Effects
- Thinking about Reverb
- Mixing with Send Effects
- Mixing with Busses
- Adding Automation
- Basic Mix Walkthrough
- Preparing Your Mix
- Creating a Static Mix
- EQ & Compression
- Bus Processing
- Reverb & Delay
- Special Effects
- Advanced Mixing Skills & Strategies
- Different Techniques to Gain Stage
- Understanding Parallel Processing
- Advanced Guide to Mixing with Reverb
- Dynamics Processing
- Do You Need Fancy Plugins?
- Advanced Mixing Walkthrough
- Track Preview
- Mixing Drums
- Mixing Bass
- Mixing Keyboards
- Mixing Acoustic Guitar
- Mixing Leads
- Mixing Pads
- Creating Interest Through Mixing
- Creating Engaging Transitions
- Bonus Downloads & Cheat Sheets
- Mixing Process Checklist
- The 7 Types of Reverb Reference Guide
- The 4 Ways to Use Compression Reference Guide
- The 3 EQ Techniques Cheat Sheet
- 4 Advanced Mixing Techniques to Remember
- Mixing Overview Guide