I forgot to do my blog post last week for my 16th lesson so this post will be a combination of everything I learned for lesson 16 and 17. So last week Joe started teaching me how to use all the mixing techniques he's shown me thus far and apply them to an overall mixing session from beginning to end.
1. Listen to the Song (you want to get a feel for the song, tempo, chorus, hook, instruments, etc.)
2. Look for unwanted Distortion
3. Gain Staging process (Bring the levels down between -20 and -15)
4. Place Limiter and Compressor on MasterFader (Suggested Ratio should be 2:0 and 8:0) (*this is a suggested option to go ahead with placing the limiter and compressor on the MasterFader after the Gain Staging step, but is not a must. Can also perform this step near the end.)
5. Add EQ or Compression to desired tracks (Joe suggested to perform Panning after EQing)
6. Add Delays or Reverbs (Drums, Bass, other instruments, vocals)
7. Adjust volume levels to your liking while maintaining "balance" between all the various tracks being used for the mix.
So these are the steps that Joe explained to me during our 16th lesson last week. After he explained it all, then he went and started mixing a Rock 'N Roll song so I could physically see him go through all the mixing steps and ask questions along the way. After he finished, he let me begin the mixing process for a different Rock 'N Roll song called "Deal with the Devil". There was only enough time for me to complete the Gain Staging process. Yesterday for lesson 17, I completed the remaining steps of the mixing process. The only part I really had a problem with and needed Joe's assistance was for the Reverb I was trying to put on the Distorted Guitar and the Delay I was trying to put on one of the Vocal tracks. I had to make a mental note of the correct process on how to use Reverb and Delay:
**Mental Note - Make sure to create an Auxilliary track whenever using Delays or Reverbs and Bus the instrument or vocal track to the Auxilliary track. The Reverb or Delay should be placed on the Auxilliary Track. Then turn the volumn up on the Auxilliary track to hear the difference in sound being made by the Reverb or Delay.
Once I completed the mixing process, Joe Bounced the song and burned it on a CD for me to take home and listen to. He said to listen to it over the weekend and make notes of any changes or things I heard that don't sound right so we can correct them next week. He stated that for lesson 18, we'll begin working on a Hip-Hop song while continuing to improve "Deal with the Devil". I enjoyed learning the overall mixing process and can't wait to do other songs.