Mixed a song last week.

I had some time early in the week to get the mix set up and do some basic level-setting. I planned to come back later in the week and finish it.

Well, when I sat down to finish, I had it in my head that I had already made a lot of progress. But when I opened up the session, I saw that I had really only put a handful of plugins on a couple guitar tracks and almost nothing else.

I thought I had a lot of work ahead of me.

Then I listened to the mix.

I heard several things I wanted to change, but for the most part the mix was already sounding pretty good.

Here’s the lesson.

(It’s SO important for you to get this.)

When you get to a point in the mix (even if it’s only after an hour of work) where you’re pretty happy with how it sounds, RESIST THE URGE to overmix.

I think Mixerman calls this “going past the mix.”

You can ruin a great mix by mixing it too much.

“But Joe, not all the tracks have plugins on them yet!!”

Easy, turbo. Don’t freak out on me.

That mix I was working on? I’d say at least HALF the tracks don’t have any plugins on them. The mix came together with just a handful of plugins.

It simply didn’t need a bunch of plugins.

Listen to what the mix is saying to you. You need to be able to recognize when the mix is saying, “Leave me alone!”

When it doubt, go simple.

By the way, the mix I’m referring to is for this month’s song over at Dueling Mixes. To mix it yourself, and see how I mixed it, head over to:


Joe Gilder
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