You’ve probably heard me say this before.

I’m a lazy bum.

While laziness is generally considered to be a bad thing, there are times where it comes in handy.

For example, my laziness has lead me to develop an approach to mixing that requires the minimal amount of work.

See, far too many people get bogged down with unimportant details in a mix, like what kind of crossfade to use for that vocal edit you just made, or if the high-pass filter on the vocal should be set to 105 Hz or 110 Hz.

That’s counter-productive, and it can KILL your mix.

Here’s my take on it. If it doesn’t make a BIG impact on the mix, I ignore it.

If I get to the end of the mix and it (whatever “it” is) doesn’t bother me anymore, I leave it alone.

There are much more important things to a mix than the small minutiae. Focus most of your time on stuff that makes a big difference, like setting proper levels, or getting a great drum tone.

Focus on that stuff FIRST. Then you might find that all the stuff you used to agonize over aren’t even audible in the mix anymore.

Here’s an example.

On my most recent album, there are several songs where I forgot to go in and “clean up” the lead vocal track. One in particular comes in mind. If you listen to the solo’d vocal, you hear me pressing the record button, you hear me moving around and even coughing.

But guess what? You don’t hear it in the mix.

Sure, I could have taken an extra 10 minutes to clean up the vocal, but IT WOULDN’T HAVE MATTERED.

If you feel like you’re stuck in the minutiae, I’m giving you permission to be lazy. Ignore the small stuff and focus solely on the big picture.

You’ll finish more mixes, AND your mixes will sound better.

Imagine that.

Now, if you want to see my lazy mixing approach in action (including my step-by-step guide to what I call “mixing backwards”), sign up for Understanding Mixing, my latest tutorial series.

I’m releasing new videos every Tuesday and Thursday until the mix is done. We’re just a few weeks in, and there’s a LOT of great stuff for you to learn already.

Sign up here:

Joe Gilder
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