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Creating Music? Connect With A Mixing Engineer To Release Better Sounding Music

By Author: Bob Smith
Total Articles: 281

For the independent artist, sounding great isn't a rarity only available to well-funded artists anymore - it is a must. Music sales may have diminished, but that doesn't mean that recorded music is going away any time soon. Far from it. More music is being consumed on more devices by more fans than ever before in history! Musicians are making their music available on internet and satellite radio, online music streaming services such as Pandora, Spotify, Rdio, Deezer, and YouTube, selling on direct-to-fan sites such as CD Baby, Bandcamp, and ReverbNation, and still pushing sales through ‘traditional' online retailers such as iTunes and Amazon MP3. Let's face it, there is no excuse for an artist to put out poor recordings.
To many, audio engineers are still mysterious. To others, they are ‘evil' manipulators of sound, creating false, auto-tuned, robots out of untalented artists. This, however, is far from fact. Every record, no matter the type, gets touched by a tracking engineer, mixing engineer, and mastering engineer. The recording engineer uses many of microphones and technique to accurately capture and record the artist's performance as it happens in the recording studio. The mixing engineer takes all of the separate music tracks and crafts the music to sound correct and convey the song's emotion. He sets correct levels, panning, equalization, compression, and adds creative effects where needed to complement the artist's vision. Lastly, the mastering engineer uses unique equipment and highly trained ears in an acoustically sound room to subtly polish and prepare the track for final release and ensure the music translates to a variety of playback systems. "While many audio techniques can enhance the final production, we engineers are not magicians and can't replace a poor performance or terrible recording," says Scott of Virtual Mix Engineer.
Recordings are more often used as promotional tool for artists and labels. The big dough currently is in live shows, publishing, film and TV placements, and merchandising. When a listener connects with a band's music, they'll listen to their records, comment, and share the music with their friends. The fans want to help the artist and buy tickets to their concerts, purchase t-shirts, and follow and interact with the band through social media. As the artist grows in popularity, their music may be chosen for sync placements in movies and TV, which not only provides great exposure, it also pays well. To make it to this stage however, it all starts with a great song and quality recording.
The rise of do-it-yourself recording has led to more musicians releasing music than ever before. With a powerful computer, some microphones, a DAW, and a little knowledge, anyone can record and distribute music. One area where many musicians fall short is failing to recognize their weaknesses in audio engineering. An experienced mixer has the right equipment, but most importantly the skills to make a production reach its full potential. Though it can be hard for an artist, letting go and trusting your engineer will take your recordings to the next level and help you stand out from the others. Fans are instantly attracted to a well-written and performed song that sounds like a hit.
Spend a good amount of time in pre-production, ensuring your song and arrangement are as solid as possible. Then and only then, go to the best studio you can afford to lay down your tracks. Find a local or online mix engineer within your budget whose work and personality you like, and tweak the mix until you're happy. Lastly, send the songs off to the mastering engineer for that final touch. Once your record is completed, you can get the music into multiple venues and into the phones and computers of your listeners and fans. Scott Horton is the definition of today's cutting-edge mixing engineer/producer/songwriter. Scott has mixed for a myriad of artists and labels the world over in all musical genres ranging from Pop, Pop-Rock, Hip-Hop,RnB, Urban and more. His online mixing and mastering service, Virtual Mix Engineer, delivers musicians with superb sounding mixes which make impressions that count. Visit Scott at http://www.virtualmixengineer.com

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