If you're fighting to make all your instruments fit together in a busy mix, can't figure out the best compression settings for your tracks, or don't know how to use effects like reverb, delay and saturation without creating a washed out, cluttered mess of a mix, then don't worry, I completely get it.
Hi, I'm Björgvin Benediktsson and I run Audio Issues. I've written over 1,000 articles on music production since 2008 and taught thousands of home studio musicians how to produce, record and mix their music.
Let me tell you, I had no clue what I was doing when I first started mixing.
I thought mixing was supposed to be fun and cool but I was just intimidated. All I was doing was randomly inserting plug-ins and processors on every track, shrugging my shoulders because I couldn't really figure out how anything worked.
No matter what I did I couldn't make it sound better. I mean, the songs changed, but I didn't really know where I was going with the mix. There was no balance to the instruments and the vocals sounded glued on and fake.
It just screamed "amateur."
The reason why was simple. I had no plan of action, and no concrete steps to make my mixes sound like I wanted.
Years later, after countless hours of recording and mixing, I know what I am doing.
Mixing became fun.
With simple EQ and compression tricks, I got punchy drums and full and balanced instruments. I started using reverb and delay to create space and depth for that professional feel. My vocals sounded better than ever as I started to recognize and eliminate problematic frequencies, adding some secret sauce with saturation and blending them into the mix so they wouldn't feel stuck on top.