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Recording Music? Hire A Mix Engineer To Sound Your Best

By Author: Bob Smith
Total Articles: 282

For the independent recording artist, sounding amazing isn't a rarity only available to well-funded artists anymore - it is a requirement. Music sales may have diminished, but that doesn't mean that recorded music is on its way out. Far from it. More music is being consumed on more devices by more listeners than ever before in history! Artists 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. Simply put, there is no excuse for an artist to release sub-par recordings.
For many, audio engineers are still a mystery. To others, they are ‘evil' manipulators of music, creating false, auto-tuned, drones out of unskilled artists. This, however, is far from fact. Every recording, no matter the type, gets taken care of by a tracking engineer, mixing engineer, and mastering engineer. The recording engineer uses a plethora of microphones and technique to accurately capture and record the artist's performance as it occurs in the recording studio. The mix engineer takes all of the separate audio tracks and crafts the music to sound correct and convey the song's emotion. He sets proper levels, panning, equalization, compression, and adds creative effects where possible to enhance the artist's vision. Lastly, the mastering engineer uses specialized gear and highly trained ears in an acoustically accurate room to subtly polish and prepare the production for final release and ensure the sound plays back well on 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.
Recorded music is more often used as promotional vessel for musicians. The big dough these days is in converts, publishing, sync placements, and merchandise. When a fan 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 musician grows in popularity, their music may be chosen for sync placements in film and TV, which not only provides great exposure, it also pays very well. To make it to this stage however, it all begins with a great song and quality recording.
The rise of do-it-yourself recording has led to more artists releasing music than ever before. With a powerful computer, some microphones, a digital audio workstation, and a little know-how, anyone can create and release music. One area where many artists 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 productions to the next level and help you stand out from the crowd. Listeners are instantly attracted to a well-written and performed song that sounds like a hit.
Spend the proper time in pre-production, ensuring your song and arrangement are as strong as possible. Then and only then, get into the best studio you can afford to record your basic tracks. Connect with a local or online mixing engineer within your budget whose work and personality you gel with, and tweak the mix until you're satisfied. Lastly, send the songs off to the mastering engineer for that final touch. Once your recording is completed, you can get the music into multiple stores and into the ears of your listeners and fans. Scott Horton is the epitome of today's contemporary mixing engineer/producer/songwriter. Scott has collaborated with an endless number of music groups from around the world in all musical genres ranging from Pop, Pop-Rock, Hip-Hop,RnB, Urban and more. His online mixing and mastering service, Virtual Mix Engineer, provides recording artists with spectacular sounding mixes which make impressions that count. Come say hi to Scott at http://www.virtualmixengineer.com

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