MIXING FUNDAMENTALS: Audio Mixing For Beginners - How To Mix & Master Radio Worthy Beats | Kia Orion | Skillshare

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MIXING FUNDAMENTALS: Audio Mixing For Beginners - How To Mix & Master Radio Worthy Beats

teacher avatar Kia Orion, Artist & Music Producer

Watch this class and thousands more

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

20 Lessons (1h 13m)
    • 1. INTRO

    • 2. WELCOME

    • 3. 3 QUICK TIPS







    • 10. MIXING THE 808


    • 12. MIXING DRUMS

    • 13. MAIN MELODY

    • 14. TEXTURES

    • 15. MASTERING

    • 16. AUTOMATION

    • 17. CAR TEST



    • 20. CONCLUSION

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About This Class

Do you hear songs on the radio and wonder why yours don’t sound the same?

It’s not because they have a super special technology. It’s because they’ve nailed the mix. 

If you’re like most hip-hop producers you love creating the music, but the engineering side leaves you feeling confused and maybe a bit lost. 

In this course I teach you how to make radio ready songs from your bedroom or home studio. 

We do all the mixing with stock plug-ins, so you can use any DAW and there’s no fancy gear or software necessary. 

Imagine being able to mix your tracks without the confusion of “what next?”

A good mix comes down to a few key concepts that I share with you in this course. 

You’ll learn:

-How to properly organize your mix to save yourself time

-Mistakes most people make mixing their 808s (and how to avoid them)

-How to easily master your track to make it BUMP in car speakers or headphones

-A way to utilize your effects to get your tracks to pop

-Some of the best stock plug-ins for hip-hop

-Shortcuts to your workflow to speed up your process


By the end of this class you’ll be on your way to mixing your music and achieving the sonic vision you hear in your head.

Just don’t forget about me when you’re famous, deal?

Meet Your Teacher

Teacher Profile Image

Kia Orion

Artist & Music Producer


Ay! I'm Kia. 

I'm an artist and educator who believes life wouldn't be the same without music.

Or tacos.

I realized that I was equally as passionate about teaching music as I was making it.

In 2016 I founded Beat School, an online platform and series of educational programs to help aspiring artists and producers learn how to make beats, accelerate their growth, and stay inspired. 

I'm originally from New York but these days you'll find me traveling around the world writing songs or playing beats on a rooftop somewhere.

I appreciate you stopping by, and if you'd like to get in touch you can DM me or shoot me an email at [email protected] 

Life is too short not to do what you lov... See full profile

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1. INTRO: wondering what's missing in your beats. You hear what's on the radio. Feel so out of reach, get caught in the questions. Start to feel the feel like what hard when you buy and Republicans to meet going top in there before strip it all away And I focused on the source. It took me 10 years, but I wanna make clear I took everything I knew when I turned it to a course. This is one of those that you don't want to miss, so you better buckle in while I teach you how to mix. We'll show you on my tracks Little secrets and tips. When the focus on the high you're going, get stamps What? Your father went along. I'll show you how it's done with drug. There's really nothing to it Once you know it got to do it. Teach you everything you need to make a song. Yeah, 2. WELCOME: Welcome to your course. If you're ready to step up, you're mixing your in the right place. First things first. We're going to talk about what do you need to get started? Ah, lot of times when people are getting started mixing, they think they need a bunch of fancy software or all this hard work here. You don't need any of that. I'm going to be doing all of the mixing in this tutorial with simply just stock plug ins. That being said, there are some plug ins that I do recommend some for free, some not for free. You can find all those in the class resource. Is this classes for intermediate and beginner students who want to take them mixing to the next level? These are things that I wish that I had no long starting out that took me years of trial and error. Figure it from watching tutorials from taking courses myself and a boil it all down for you and then take you through my process and I give you the stem so that you can follow along and learn with me. By the end of this course, you're going to know the importance of EQ you how to mix with stock plug ins and how to get attracted gel with all of the elements when it comes to mixing and also mastering yourself . This will give you the solid base that you need to the chicken build on and take it from there. 3. 3 QUICK TIPS: before jumping into this course, I want to talk to you about a couple ideas that I find incredibly important. The 1st 1 is CQ. I'm going to be doing all of my mixing through April 10 stock plug ins. If you don't have a built in, that's fine. You can use that over plug ins dog that you choose, but none of these are going to be third party paid plug ins. However, you can take those once you level up. But do not let those be a crutch. You can get the same sound. You can achieve the sound that you want from the stock plug ins that you already have. Once you get the solid base, that solid foundation you can build from there, learn the rules and then break up. Which brings me to my third and final point. As you're mixing, realize that mixing is a fluid process. Don't be afraid to go back in federal with things turned ups and switches that the real key to a mix is how it all meshes together as a final project 4. COURSE PROJECT: What's going on, guys, I hope that you are ready to rock their role in this course. Before jumping into it. I wanted to talk to about the course project. Yes, watching these videos will be helpful, but one don't even better practicing. I've put all of these stems together for you in a file. So that way you can follow along with the step by step and see what I do, and they make those changes yourself. The real key is implementing these strategies, tips and tactics into your own work in the best way to do that by getting started. So please download that pack and follow along with me. I would love to see what you guys do with it. Follow along and then post it below and feel free to post some of your other music as well . I've got a ton of resource is for you guys under the course Project Tam. To check that out, download some of my freebies to help you along level of your game, get the files and let's jump into it. 5. IMPORTING THE STEMS: when you first started to project like this, chances are you guys have a couple audio tractor, some sort of default, Few tracks over here. However, the most important aspect when it comes to mixing is organizing your mix. And I actually have a built in templates that you have to do this the entire time. But because we are, we're starting from scratch with you all, depending on your dog. The first thing we do is make sure that your samples won't be automatically warped when you bring them in. So some, like a Bolton, will automatically work their samples. So you're gonna want to go to file and record work, launch and go to make sure oughta work. Long samples is off. But that being said now we're gonna look, make sure that your temple is set to 1 80 bpm because that is the ppm of the track. And then go snag your samples. You're stems, as we call them, every single, each one of these, its own element of the stems your track, the furor wrappers which pay a lot of money for. And then you bring them into your track and I'm gonna hold command so that each one is put on its own track separately. So I'm gonna wait for this to load for a hot second and then we'll jump into it. 6. GETTING ORGANIZED: all right. The first and most important step when you're starting out your mix is making sure that it's organized. I'm a big believer in simplicity, so my tracks never get to crazier at a hand. But depending on what kind of track you have, you can get tons and tons of tracks. What's she just can't act? I can't emphasize this enough that make sure you organize your shit now because it's so much harder to do later on. So that we were going to do this is I organized things depending on whether they're low, when drums melodies and group them and then color for them. So this is the actual full track itself. So I'm gonna put this down at the bottom, and we're just gonna get that out of the way for now. So now what I recommend doing is my eight await. I want this to go with my kick. So I'm going to copy and paste my kids in my eight await again. These are going to be, um, all in the able to in template that you can download. I'll put it is part of the course project, so you're welcome to download that it will have all this done for you here after your every time. So I will do this and then I'll rename this, uh, lows. And then I like the color code, my shits. Eso we'll get We'll get some some fun colors going to a color coded assigned tractor group tracks and clips. Make sure all of my clothes or purple and the next I'm gonna do drums. So let me find some my open hi hats. Put these up here with these high ATS. Let me find my snares. Where's my snare? Shut him one time. Ok, um, put these up here. Cool. So now I've got kind of Milo's going, and then I'm gonna grab all of my drums here. Should bring my high hat. Do this one at one. If I had to. Two snares, two types of regularize two types open. I have a group. All of these gonna make these some sort of a fun orange color. Something some like this purples and oranges. Why not have fun with it? Cool. So these air gonna be drums? All right, Collapse that and then get out of here. Dude, what are you doing? If this track out of here. This is this is I the full track down even shows the Children here. Okay, so all my vocals down here pretty much already, ready to rock, Which is kind of nice gonna group those and do these as vocals. And these air already a nice purple. So keep him in that, uh, this is my main sample. So this I'm gonna let this guy rock my producer tag, depend a one off season. Um, you just kind of chilling their own riser and impact. These other impacts group together, uh, as transitions, and we'll make those green. So I said I was gonna go up here. I'm gonna put my I kind of layer up my beat from top to bottom as well as kind of how I like to mix things just because I find it easier that way. So this is also kind of how I mix in a vertical fashion, always makes my lows drums, the sample and everything of that nature. But we'll get to that in a second. So now that the mixes organized, all of your things are in groups color the color coded and labeled. Then we will move on to the next part 7. REFERENCE TRACKS: I think it's important to have an idea of where you want to go with the track. So this next part is pretty simple. But have what's called a reference track. Take a track that you think is similar to the one that you'll be making or producing. It gives you an idea of where you want to go with it. Because as you get lost in your own mix, it can sometimes be easy to forget what a professional record sounds like. And so, depending on the general, you have a different record. But for this example, one of my favorites that I love even those isn't a dancehall track is the record unforgettable by French Montana. So I come in here and this I find the track that I want, and then I'll just leave this up. I will either leave this up either my Spotify or if you have this downloaded, you can even drag and drop it into your project. But this is something you want to keep coming back to. As you're playing your track, Come back to the track that you have is a reference track, and it just gives you some perspective kind of a bird's eye view on how your mixes sounding compared to the track that you think sounds really good. 8. FIRST LISTEN: get that cat. So this is a track that I produced, so I already know it. But if you are an engineer, your engineer for somebody else and you might not have heard the track, I think it's important to go in and listen to track kind of get a feel for it without necessarily levels being anything crazy. But since I produced the track, I already know what I'm shooting for. So once her in here, I start with the most important element first, and it depends on what type of a track you want. Most of the beats that I make are either for myself as an artist in vocalist or I produce beats for other folks. If I'm making beats for a visual, whether that's for branded content or something along those lines, air commercial, and then I'll produce the track and mix the track differently. But knowing that I want vocals on this, I'm gonna come in with a different intention. So set your intent before you mix the track. Will this have a vocalist, or will it not helps? You kind of have a vision for moving forward, and for me, I like the mix from the ground up pretty much for me. The most important part of the track. Even as a vocalist, writer and sometimes rapper, I find the drums from me the low end and the drums of the most important because that you could pretty much rock. I'm just those alone. So I always start with my kick first and the eight away. But right now we're just gonna play the track through. I'm gonna pretend that I've never heard this before. You shouldn't play the track through everything at a lower volume. Just kind of see what's going on with the track. So for you, this had been everything's kind of your levels are set and just play the track and listen to over a second. - You see what I'm saying? So you can play that as long as they don't play the full track for you. But at this point, you would just play it kind of see what's going on, because it might be your first time. You know, seeing this song if you haven't played it already. Kind of see what's going on seeing where things are. But once you have a new idea of kind of how everything's looking, this is when you're actually gonna jump into mixing the individual elements one at a time, 9. MIXING THE KICK: Okay, So starting with the most important part of the track first, the lows. I'm going to walk you all step by step through my mixing process. And normally, when I'm producing a track, I have a rough mix on it already. But because I want to show you guys all the little different things that are doing a mixing and give you the note, the tips, tricks and tactics, the good stuff that that you're paying for, I'm going to mix these one at a time. So I will come in here in a built in this kind of a view, and I will downturn everything down. Normally, at this point, I either just finished the track or something along those lines where I, um I already kind of a rough mix, but I want to then really come in and start to get more precise with the mixing. The reason I turned everything down because I want to start to mix things. I want to mix elements in one at a time. And for me, that starts with the kick goes that saying, but having a good kick sound. Having good sounds in general goes a long way you can't polish a shitty sound. Well, you can, but it's just a lot easier if you really start to good sound. So for the kick, uh, I'll bring these in and what you want to do is also want to find a part of your track where at least in this regard, you have the most elements happening. So for this, I'm gonna choose the hook. I'm just loop the hook where I think I have almost all the elements playing and just let it rock and start mixing elements in one at a time. What I'm looking right now for with the kick is I like to cause again Over here. We want it to be around four, 56 somewhere in there. Total. So if my kick is already coming in at seven and that is interesting And when it comes to kicks and your lows in general e que again, I hate to harp on this a ton, but your e que is really king s so you can see where your kicks are, different frequencies that it's coming in. Uh, your it's really easy fear lows to get money. So he queuing here is again For me, it's much more of a subtracted process than it is additive. Rather than trying to boost up a lot of these, hook these lows, that's more about cutting out all the money sounds. And then we can We can raise the different elements of highs or add. Some affect small things of that nature later to really bring out. But for now, I'm cutting out most of the lows below probably 30 40 hertz somewhere in there, I'm coming in around eight. All right, so I'm gonna bring this down, and then I want to make it a little bit more punchy, so I'm going to throw on a glue compressor. This enable Tonton is ah, nifty little blue compressor. It's not super powerful, but I fusion fun things with it. So I turned the attack all the way up on it. I turned the ratio. I'll turn the ratio upon this as well. Depending if I need it, will see. And then I turn on soft clipping. Soft clipping allows you to really pushed this thing hard without it necessarily affecting your master volume. So I'll then bring with compression. It's pretty much if you don't know about compression. It's It's kind of squeezing your frequencies into one solid range. It takes the highs. It takes your peaks, brings them down and takes your lows and bring them up. So a little bit too much compression can be could be bad news. But if you applied correctly thing up, you kind of bring out some just a different dynamics in certain elements. So what I'm shooting for now is gonna bring my threshold down to when it's not gonna begins to five somewhere. It doesn't really precise, but somewhere in there, and then I'll turn my makeup gain up to chase. Cool. So somewhere in there and again, you have to get this part perfect because you'll also be coming back to these as you go. So you don't stress about this part too much, but make sure that your cue is down. You have some compression on it. And then once it's in kind of the 7.58 range, we can start mixing ate away 10. MIXING THE 808: once you have kind of a loose feeling for your kick, and I want to make it clear again that mixing is a fluid process, every single instrument. It's not necessarily about mixing things individually the entire time. His mixing is all about how things glued together as a whole. So if I wanted to just make this kick individually, I might bring out some of the high ends and here because it might sound better right now. But I'm not sure how it's gonna sound with the rest of the track. So I'm gonna keep mixing the rest of the track. And then once I have other elements, bring and bring other things in and out. Then I might come back, start boosting things, seeing what I'm lacking. But right now we're just kind of getting the levels going, getting a little bit of punch from the compressor, cutting at the low end, moving things forward onto the eight awake. One of my favorite parts of hip hop is in trap is the base. So with eight awaits again, you're gonna want to make you it cannot your lows. Seeing where this eight await is in bringing it in another piece of ice that I recommend is you can bring things in, kind of doing extreme and then slowly back them off to see kind of what it sounds like. So I'll show you what I mean. So I can again, I'm seeing kind of where the frequency ranges for this eight await and one of my favorite plug ins. It's a free plug in for eight awaits. Is this also have a link to this as well? It's called Camel Crusher, and with eight awaits in base in general, it's not about necessarily boosting their low end. But a lot of what you're hearing and what can bring out your base is more things in the high end, which I find distortion goes a long way with eight awaits. I love that super distorted kind of ate away vibe. So how throwing a camel crusher and you see what I mean? Watch it years because this joint goes pretty crazy. So we're gonna dial this back for sure. Uh uh uh, All right. We're starting it a little bit of a nice ground going. Another key with Excuse me. Another key with low frequencies is making sure that your kick when they're eight await are competing for the same space. This you look at their frequencies again. Ah, lot of it's all happening right here. So one big piece of advice that I recommend is you can is carving out a way for your chick to shine through even when you're eight, await your bases kind of growl and taking up that low it when my favorite ways to do this it's called side chain compression. So you throw a compressor on inside chaining pretty much just is telling the compressor that it needs to kick in when another element place. So you see what I'm saying? Audio. So I want this decide changing a kick, which means when the kick triggers my eight a week will duck out that way because you're kick is very punchy, right? You listen to it, it doesn't have much of a tail. So when your kid comes, do you really want that joint? The punch through your ate away as a much longer tail in your base will normally, uh, will carry over much longer. So when you're kick, you endure, kicked really punch through eso I turn the ratio all the way up. I'm going to bring the threshold super down, and then I'll start messing with the attack. The release in the dry, wet knob until I can get it where I want it where I want to kick to come through. But I also don't want to lose the eight await. So that's I'm gonna look at now. Uh uh uh, And when you do that as well, it frees up mawr of your volume because they won't be playing at the same time. So that means you can also bump these up a little bit more. You have more room to work with when you sigh, change it a kid because they are playing simultaneously. Uh uh, And again, this is gonna come to taste, but I just like him to store data ways. I like that growly shit I like. I really like distortion. I'm a shit. So this this will come to taste Don't, no matter what doll you have. If you have Kimmel pressure, another distortion, you don't necessarily have to bump it up much as I will. But I just like my ship aground. That's fax. Uh Ah. Okay. So, again, not gonna spend a ton of time getting nitpicky with this because where we can always come back to it as we mix in the other elements. The kick is going you got and I staying up there, you got your eight awaits were still at 7.5. Because we're it's around seven. If I might even start to push my kick up a little bit more because we have some room, let's see what that looks like. Cool 6.5. I like that going into the drums. Next, but not least, some of the most important aspects the snares, the hi hats, Let's get it. 11. PANNING (SECRET SAUCE): before he makes the drums. I want to talk to you about panting, because this is something that you'll be seeing me do as we makes the rest of these tracks . I rarely, if ever, will pan my low ends. But when it comes to just about everything else in the track, you see me dio. I'm going to be panning it. When you learn to listen to tracks, you'll realize that there's so much going on in the left and the right ear that it doesn't have to come to you straight down the center. You want to think of your mixes Mormon, that people say you have a wide mix. It's our that has a lot of depth. That means that is more three dimensional than everything Coming straight down the center at you, in each doll will be different. But in this one, this knob is what pants it to the right or to the left. And this is a huge technique that took me a long time to learn, which is a little bit of panning. One way or the other can really bring out elements, because if they're all coming straight down the center, that means they're all going to competing. They're all competing in that for that same lane, but as you see is, I'll start to mix these different elements, painting different things to the writer to the left. One it gives you keeps the listener kind of interested, whether they know it or not, because it adds motion to the track things. You're kind of moving from the left of the right, but it also can help you bring out elements rather than having to just rely simply on volume or effects to get things to stick out in your mix by simply painting them slave to the red, to the right or to the left. You can really bring certain elements out that having the sacrifice or compromise your volume of that track or the overall volume. So we'll jump into this, mixing the drums, and I'll be doing this a lot. You'll see what I mean. Let's get it 12. MIXING DRUMS: So starting with these snares, these I have to snares, layered and I'm going to be doing is bringing them in and then adjusting them to taste because that you want a layered sound. But I'm gonna probably want one more than the other, so I'll bring them in one at a time, see how it affects my major volume and then adjusting the taste. Let's get it. What I'm doing right now is I'm bringing in this second snare slowly because this is something that I want to feel more than a necessarily need to hear it. This is also one of those things where if you can't tell few years playing tricks on it, you can bring it all the way up here. What it sounds like maxed out and then drag it down just depends on the technique. What you want. Also, when it comes to snares, this is very much up to taste. Some people don't like their snare super loud other folks of you, especially if it wasn't a lot of old school hip hop deejay Premier tracks A lot of times those snares aircraft and so allowed it makes your ears bleed, so it depends on what you're looking forward. That's when looking for it now is the balance between these two. But they're also doesn't take up too much of overall volume. So I'm actually liking the second snare sound a little bit more, has more detail to it. Ah Ah, cool. So this is one of those elements that we will definitely be coming back. Teoh, when it comes to your snares, I don't stress about these too much right now because most of the time your melodies and 11 instruments or vocals will compete with the snare. So I just kind of get this as a loose space right now. But you'll most often than not, you either lose some of your snare transients once you add in the other elements. Or you'll realize that you may be mixed, the sneer too loud in a certain overpower other elements. So I was gonna leave it right there for now. And then we'll come back even message that once you introduce him to the other aspects moving on to the hi hats. These are one of my favorite parts of any track are the hi hats open hats in the percussion . This is where I think you have a lot of fun and you really start to develop those different get out of here. You start to develop those different kind of grooves, bops and pockets. That myself is a vocalist I find really fun to experiment with. So let's start. And this is where the panting comes in because you want to start kind of adding these different elements to different parts of your ears, just at some character to the track. High has also come down to taste, where sometimes you want them to be felt more than necessarily heard other times. You might want them to be more of a driving part of the track or just depends on what's going on. And another element key is mixing tips that I really like is adding side chain compression , two other elements of your high hats in your percussion. So I will then probably side chain these high hats to the kick as well, just to have some fun, give it a little bit of bounce and see how it feels. Uh uh, I'm realizing that we're starting. Obviously you're starting encroach over our foreign, our threesome coming back down to my low end. There's gonna start turning elements down a little bit here and there just to free up more room and then we can come back and mix these in. But I realized that we're starting Teoh. Uh, still some elements left. We need to mix. So I realized that we need at least 0.5 or maybe one to bring back in this melody and see how it goes. This is one of those open our hats that is meant to It's on every other beat, and it's meant to just kind of push the track along a little bit. This is necessarily one that I want to be heard or very loud, but this open, I I really like the way that it kind of slides into the rest of the percussion. So I'm gonna bring this one up a little bit just because I like the way it sounds Also panned it. So you can actually you know, I want this one to be heard. So at this point, what do you have your drums in? And you're just know melodies, anything. Issue drums in your low end. At this point, you should have a pretty good feel of how just your drums or meshing together before moving under the melody. This is a part you want to spend the time to just at least get some sort of a good groove going, so you have to come back to it too much. But once you start to add in all the vocals and melodies and everything like that, you feel free to come back to these. But don't rush through your drums. This is one of the most fun parts as well is coming in here and, you know, throwing in different side chain compressors are just tending, getting a little bounce in your drugs. Your This is where you want to attract. The kind of is the heart in the meat and potatoes of your track right here, moving on to parts of the melody. 13. MAIN MELODY: just your sample or with your melody. Whatever you've played out, oftentimes this is gonna be one of the harder parts to mix, because depending on what this is, it's gonna compete with your drums or other elements in your track. So just is a fair warning. And this one, this is a, uh this is a sample of keys that I found and then reversed it and chopped it up so that it sounded like this. And I can still tell that their frequencies in different residents in here that I want to eliminate. But we're going to work on at least bring this volume up so you can hear it, and then we'll mix it with the rest of the track. Play e eight away is See, now that I brought that, I can tell it's it's to growly. So with, especially with keys or anything like that, you're gonna have a bunch of stuff going on that you don't necessarily want in there. So if you check this out, look at all these frequencies in the sample. Do you can see those peaks in their those air frequencies that you don't necessarily want? And so we'll do this, We'll we'll come back and do this and mastering as well. But just I roll off all the low end again in the sample or in whatever you're, um, Melody is here. Whatever your keys are, which is me remain instrument because you don't need that low and stuff. Leave that for your chicken. Your eight await for this. I'm going to start looking for those high frequencies, those resonating frequencies that sound kind of uncomfortable and see if I can take some of those out. So these in here way to do this and teaching the measuring as well is no matter what kind of a Q you have turn your cue all the way up. We're throwing these little headphones so we can solo just this these frequencies and we're gonna scan to find what frequencies are that are kind of weird resonating sounds and see what I'm talking about. Yeah, that's not some shit. You want your track. So you snag once you find one of those, like you play thing and then once you have it, you haven't located you. You keep the Q similar, but they used bring the gain down that way. It helps you. This is a way to skin and remove certain frequencies in your track. Their sound shitty way might do that a few more times again. You want to spend all day doing this because you can trust me. But you at least want to get some of the big ones. Just another one in here that I think we're gonna snag there is. There's another one. Cool. I normally don't spend a ton of time e queuing after these frequencies if the sample if it's not too bothersome. But this is one of those samples that those get those resonant frequencies can really start to. Where on you If you are careful so through that on and then I'll also want to, uh, some of my favorite effects for bringing out. I know I want the sample already, too. I might also look roll off more of the high end because there's some more frequencies and there aren't super placing of the year. I want this to be more like of a mood and less of something necessarily that's you feel like you need to pay attention to, but this is just kind of creating a feeling. Overall Alright, My favorite effects. These are what I throw on to be on. It's just about every instrument when it's a piano, anything like that. I love me some O T T Mota Mota Band Dynamics. This allows you to adjust Different frequency ranges are seizing compression, Um, kind of in these different Kenbrell at the dynamics in different elements of the track. So it just gives you more flexibility. So if there shouldn't highs, you don't want what you want to bring out the mids. But O T. T is one of those super powerful plug ins, so I almost never have the amount of 100. Bring somewhere around here. And then you start to find what I want to bring out in that instrument. They're still there. Still one of those frequencies thing. This mess with me. Can you hear it? This just feels like it's whiny. Let's see if that's it. Layering six and four top of each other in this, So I want to bring this one up. I want to bring this one out a little bit, so I'm going to draw on a saturate er and just a bit warmer, and then bring the dry wet down. This is just another distortion, no matter what doll urine. But this is another distortion. Plug in just to let you could use Camel Crush or even again for this just to kind of bring things out a little bit thing. Is it away? You can tell, right? We're definitely over our four or three. So another element that I might throw on here is again a little bit of side chain compression on your instrument. So that's not a good sound, right? So when I was looking for and I think you could here, too, you can hear those little cliques, so I then what you'll do is you'll you'll mess around the compressor to get those clicks out of their on again. Those going come down toe doing with your attack, you release your threshold in your driveway. Cool. That sounded pretty good to me. Will probably come back, clean up those little bit more, or start to bring that sample out once things start to come together. But move on to the next part of the melody 14. TEXTURES: when it comes to be queuing up sample on your instruments of that nature. A lot of it depends on either who you're producing for or if you're producing for yourself . I have a voice that's a zoo, a bit higher voice still waiting to hit puberty. You feel me. But if you have a lower voice than you might want to carve out dirt, certain parts of the e que in your instruments If you think about Drake one reason why I think 40 has been such a good producer forum throughout his careers because even has this, uh, uh, video. He talked about queuing out a lot of the the parts in the instruments so that drinks vocals can come through the thing about drink beats, go back and listen to some drink beets. They're very simple. There often have a ton of elements going on, and it really allows his voice to kind of carry through and carry the trap. So now moving on to the vocals will start introducing these in one at a time. Again, they're gonna probably have a lot of these same elements. As you can tell. I don't use a ton of tools, eyes mostly stock plug ins. But I do have a couple of tools that I just tend to really like. At the end of the day, though, CQ is gonna be the name of the game. Let's get to it right now. I'm just introducing his folks. I can kind of see which which which book was which and then join with them from there. The's are certain elements that add a lot of feeling to the track but don't necessarily need to be heard. I'm probably gonna bring a lot of these down and pin them and add effects where it just adds some texture, fills up some open space. But it's not a super and you don't want These did necessarily be super clear percentage, just kind of. They could also be distracting at times. If you're a writer, when it's like weird vocal shots and shit comes in and beats. So we want this to be almost like part. Think of this also is like a texture, less of an instrument, especially, I'm not too worried about queuing these right now. I'm just trying to get the levels right, and I might even throw in some panning some auto pan on these ads in motion at some flair to it. - Just listening, kind of seeing things, aligning, upset, some good school. So now we're about 4.5. Now that I've got just I don't worry about the transitions or any of this other shit really until, and the transitions I'll add in much later. But since they just are impacts things of that nature they don't affect, I don't worry about them affecting my overall volume right now that I realize that all my elements, the important ones introduced this is gonna go back in and start to make a couple tweaks if I want to just kind of see what? How things are feeling if I want to bring anything up. But this is a part where before you take it a mastering, make sure that you have it at around. You have at least four db of headroom, and then when you take it to mastering as well, you realize that, or I'll show you how to master here in a second that this will start to bring out once you bubble the volumes that there will be different elements in the track you didn't even realize, or here before that you might want to go in and take you out. You also might realize once you master it, that changes the relationship slightly between the different things, so that's we're going to jump into. 15. MASTERING: it's, too. It's sticking. This is gonna sound like I swear to saying the same shit over and over. But it's really the most important element is that you can watch tutorials on mastering that have, like 20 different plug in chains of crazy compression and these and catching peeks out. If you have to have a shitload of effects on your master and channel, there's probably something going wrong in your mix. I wouldn't worry too much about getting some crazy affects chain going there mastering, I think, with the rial keys of mastering are going to be an e que and then, um limiter unlimited or something to raise the volume. So these are 2/3 party plug ins, which I'll show you how to mix with here in a second. But because we're running with the stock plug ins theme, we're gonna have one I'm actually load up to accuse and a limiter. Well, then we'll talk about these in the second. So for this first take you, this one is going to be just one way roll off again. Come theme. A lot of the low end, probably up to maybe 25 30 herds somewhere in there, Theo. And then the other issue is one. This is gonna be one where I use this one to, um, again skin for those frequencies that we were looking for before that in the overall track . And see if I can find a couple of those that might still be lingering now that everything's in there and bring those down, See if I can cut out any of those frequencies that are stolen is kind of resonating and kind of throwing. Throwing you off a little bit is you listen to the track, remember? Turned headphones on que all the way up, and then scan away visions. Other one right close to it. - Yeah , It sounds like it's right in there. No. So if you have maybe a couple right up in here as well who does not? Don't. All right, so you get the point. You can do that. You confined. You can spend as much time as you want to take you in those out. This is a sample that tends. It looks like it tends to have a couple of those in it. Sometimes you might find one or two sometimes might not need to do this A town, but just kind of as you as you bring the volume up All of those little kind of things that that make the track sound shitty just become more apparent. The louder you make it. So we're coming in and around around five for most of the track when it comes to your limiter, especially in the able to limiter. And I'm not going to dive too much into this because you might be on a different dog. But for this one, I I let the release just rocket auto and for the gain, this able to limiter. Uh, if you turn up too high, it can start to make things sound. It can search a distort pretty quickly. This I do recommend these fab filter pro plug ins. I really like this a lot. Procure. Choosing my favorite accuse pro twos. Probably my favorite limiter. But ref with stock plug ins. So what I'm looking for now is as I turn this gain up, right, So it negative five. We have about five, maybe 4.5 decibels that work with I want to I don't want this to be pushing. I've tried not to push it past negative six eso. I'm gonna turn this up and kind of look for a balance between how loud things are and how much I'm losing quality from the mix. So that's I'm looking for now. I'm realizing now that I have this limiter on to that, I want maybe a little bit more low end action. - And another thing I might do is because I have this other prosecute seasonings Pro l two. I might try limiting it with a different one and just see how it feels, depending on which limited our music. So let's take these copy and peace those over here and let's see how it sounds with another limiter so you can tell it'll it'll peak. It's certain points, but as long as my entire track isn't bashing up against the red line, it's all right. As long as it's just kind of those points right when it's either kicking, Excuse me when the kit comes in, or if it's maybe a big impact or something like that. And when it comes to the the number I'm shooting for over here, I'm looking for something around. Negative 12 negative 13 streaming platforms they recommend I'm here for around negative 13 to 14. So that's kind of what I'm looking forward. How much gonna bump this up before it starts to get too far past that point? You can tell as I bumped this up this makeup gain and socialist to distort the kick more. I'm looking for kind of that balance between how punchy I want it and how distorted I want to kick to be. And so that's kind of I'm looking for in here is just now that things are mastered or at least as much louder. I'm now kind of going back in tweaking things just a little bit to get a feel for what I want. - I also realized I might want the snare to cracked a little bit more so I might throw a glue compressor on here. Software being again during the attack, up from the threshold down. Same technique is before and see if I'm gonna get a little bit more snap out of the snare. And if this doesn't is the trial and air. But if this might not necessarily work, then I might pen one of these snares or both of them a little bit. Just again. Bring that sound out that Mr Anything to turn the volume right now I'm again. I'm just kind of testing a limiter, seeing if they have similar field. I think our maybe a little bit too loud. - Sweet . All right, so that comes down to the mastering element. And then next, we're going to get into some of the final steps when you bring all the elements in and look at other parts of the track. 16. AUTOMATION: once you have the track master in the loudest part of the track where we have it right now on the hook with the most elements and everything sounds good, that's when you can go back. And I recommend both will add in the transitions. Now, at this point, to see how it works will mix those in. And we'll also go to other parts of the beat where it might be softer and maybe do some automation. Because B right now says everything is the last part of the track. There would be other parts of the track where it just feels too loud because different elements are missing. That doesn't make sense. You'll see what I mean. Let's jump into it. So now that I have everything kind of sound good, I'm going to add these transitions in and see how it feels and so basically right here. What I'm seeing is actually like these snares. So I really like there's a lot. So I might actually and these a little bit. Or I might see if I can turn these snares up a bit because I like those snares, uh, that kind of drop into the hook And so I might even have a drag these into this other track . See if the change held out there. Theo, I was gonna do that. So you can either do it that way because I realize that this track is loud or or if you want Teoh, we can come in and we could automate those. So let's try the verse part of the track and see how this sounds everything together. Now that it's all kind of mixed in throw this now. Sounds to these snares Don't sound loud enough to me. So what I think I might do is switch this around and actually bring this'll near sound up right here with some automation because I like these inner once the whole beat drops. I think that sounds good together, but I want these to be louder just right here. So with automation, this is when you start to have fun with things. Every doll will be different, but in a built in, this is how you do it. You'll click this little button appear brings down your automation lanes. You'll find the part of the track that you want and make sure that you have the right thing chosen. So you can automate everything, which is super fund. You can automate panting, just route. Um, all the other effects that we have more fix on this. But right now, we're gonna come in here, you can either set up these little dots to do it. These little automation points like that. Or you can draw them in with a pencil, depending on what you want. But I have to do these automation points. So they put two so that it doesn't affect the rest of your track. And then you congrats that piece and bring it up. So that way, that means we're only making this part of the track louder. So let's see how that sounds. Now we're gonna just these two taste. Just have some fun with it. Is I didn't do this in the original track, but hasn't shown the automation. I think this would be fun. Let's throw some river Burson delay on these snares for the intro. - So I like that. But now I feel like they're too loud with the effects. Cool. So again, we're gonna be this same idea where you can either copy this and you can paste it or what I want to do. What I think is easier is we're gonna go to our delay device on because we just don't want the delay on the rest of the track, and we're gonna turn them both off like this. Did you see that? So when you turn them offer on, you'll see the actual line, the automation line shift. So we'll make sure that they're off because you want them offer the most of the track. But then I'll just turn them on for this part of the track. So hopefully that makes sense. I would do the same with the delay, meaning that as soon as it goes from this part of the track to that part of track, they're no longer on makes sense. Hopefully got that. Automation can be really fun. Ways to just have transitions add different character and life to your track. Turning devices on or off can automate different effects. All of it. So we got the transitions there. We got these new high. It's going up here. Um, I think that that just about wraps it before you finish your track. But whatever you choose for your reference track, play that again. Play reference track. Come in, make any small adjustments you need to if you want And then last but not least, if you are a producer, this is what I throw on. I thought my little producer tag just cause I think that it's nice to have a little bit of a character. People know who did that. You know, you worked hard on your tractor, won't let people know who produced it. So I have this little producer, Taegu Ryan that I throwing at the end. I threw that in there Free Allah, just in case you wanted to have a producer Techno mix in. But I recommend getting your own Thurston your own swag, your character on the tracks and that's it. You can go in, tweet this as much as you want with the automation. But for the most part, track what I recommend when it comes to being done like this who finished mixed, mastered it, sit on it for a second, go up, go for a walk, leave the studio, leave your bedroom, going to sandwich, sleep on it, and then come back because I guarantee tomorrow with a fresh set of ears. You'll come in and there might be some small things that you might want to add or change, because after mixing it long enough, you go through the single listening fatigue I recommend doing. Maybe that once or twice if you need to, but a track you could change forever. There's never one right and finished track, so I recommend sleeping on or go for a walk, whatever taking a little bit of time away, coming back in, listening to it one more time and then bouncing, which I'll show you how to do right now. 17. CAR TEST: look. What? What? Okay, this point, you have the mix pretty much ready to rock before you bounce the files. Before everything is said and done, you're going to want to play these indifferent pieces of audio equipment. Whether that's in your car, they call it the car test, whether that's on your apple headphones, which is what I think a lot of people listen to music on or your nice headphones. You also gonna wanna play just off your phone speaker. Think about where people are going to be listening to your track if you're mixing in a studio, that could be incredibly deceiving if you're listening through studio monitors because 99% of people there listening to music won't be listening to them in the studio. Played in the car. Listen to it on your apple headphones. Play it out. Listen to it when you're walking around, sit on it for a bit, playing on different mediums and get a fuel for where different elements and changes might need to happen, depending on what you are mixing for. If you can get your base to come through on your phone speakers, you know you're doing something right so get that rough mix, take it out. Played in your car plane in some speakers play in something other than headphones that you've been mixing it in and see how it all kind of meshes together in some sort of other medium. 18. BOUNCING THE STEMS: so if you're going to, either. If you if you mix your track and you want us to have a professionally master, which I recommend if you're gonna doing a serious release or if you're mastering yourself, that's really find as well. You know I'm about that d I Y life, but you need to bounce the track either way or if you're making beats for somebody else, whatever to get these tracks that somebody else it's called bouncing the stems. The stems are each one of these that you took an imported initially that I exported for you . But now that we've mixed the track, we're going to want to, uh 12 printing them or exporting them, bouncing them. So to do that, you wanna select your entire leap the entire track that you have and then enable tin go to file export audio video. There's the left, your master track. So this would be the track that, like you, upload to your soundcloud Spotify, whatever. That's your master, obviously, but if you're going to bounce this for an engineer or you want the stems, you say all individual tracks, and that means it'll bounce each one of these individually, and then you can choose what kind of file type that you want. Wave is industry standard if you want a bounce in his waves. I recommend that you don't know about MP three wave ff Google it. But wave is a higher quality than MP three and enable. Then you can also bounce them as MP threes as well. If you want, that means that they are there smaller files. They you lose slight audio quality, but not a huge deal. But whenever you're exporting stem, I recommend exporting them as waves you could export. That'll bounce all of them individually, and then you'll have them as audio files. Or send. Anyone could take an important their projects to either mix master add finishing touches or rearrange if needed. I hope that was helpful. Thank you so much for sticking around and listening to this mixing tutorial. I've got many other cool tutorials courses on the way. I appreciate you doing. The whole thing means a lot checking on the next one piece 19. TYING IT TOGETHER: when it comes to mixing and finishing a track. Don't let the idea of it being perfect be crippling. Do because a mix will never be perfect. And if you keep coming back to a day, a day in and day out, you'll never actually finish the song. So set a deadline for yourself, maybe say I'm gonna have three finished mixes of this project and then it's done or two or one. Whatever it is, make sure that when you come back to it, you have a deadline or something that you stick to that you aren't constantly fiddling with it because you have to realize that people don't actually care that much, Which hurts to say. But that helped me immensely. Who do you realize that people don't actually care about your snare transients? It allows you to move so much faster because then you are spending one month on one track trying to get all the little EQ used. Perfect ship. The project come back and in that same time you could've made 3456 other songs and gotten that practice mixing 20. CONCLUSION: I hope that you enjoy this course. I hope that you got something from it. To me. This is a process that I use on every single track. I use a lot of the same stock plug ins, and when I want to get fancy, I want some of inspiration. Then maybe I'll buy a new one. I do think it's important that I know this isn't gonna happen overnight. If you're mixed, doesn't sound like my mix. Or if you're mixtures and sound like your reference track, that's okay. The key. Anything with music like these skills is to stick with it. The more you practice, the more you do it, the better you'll get. Try to break it down into one thing. You're focusing on a week, some sort of a practice plan, and it will help accelerate your broken if you want a customized practice plan. If you want more help. If you want coaching if you want or courses along these lines, come holler at me. Um, at Keio Ryan on Social Media K I a O R i o n dot com about other courses there. I've got some premium products. I've got templates. I've got sound packs, everything to help you level up as a music producer. I'm about it. So please reach out to me. Let me know if you enjoyed the course. If you did, please leave a review. If you didn't, please leave Review as well. Let me know what I can do to improve these. I'm here for you all. I know what it's like to be a beginning producer and I'm making all of this content to help your level up. This is stuff that I wish I had when I was first starting out. So with that being said, thank you so much for tuning in. It honestly means the world. Please give me shout. You already know where to find me. Check you on the next one. He's