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First Try, not quite right


Fognozzle

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I have completed the Udemy audio production course and completed my first recording, obeying all of the advice, and I have found the course thoroughly enjoyable and enlightening. However, my first recording disappoints me for the following reasons.:

*It is overall much quieter than commercial tracks

*It lacks treble

*the balance feels wrong compared with, for example Don't Cry Sister by Eric Clapton. His track gets the drums clear and crisp without them conflicting with the vocals, while my track has the drums either too low, or too loud and overpowering my lead piano.

I feel that there is more to do, but what?

 

Here it is, with a shot of my mixer.

768176456_ScreenShot2018-07-16at11_30_44AM.thumb.png.1d4e306c2de1771553e617026c3003f5.png

 

Any advice would be most welcome

 

Foggy

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Hi Foggy,

 

I saw your post in the other forum and wanted to at least give you my $0.02 for what it's worth

 

I've been writing and mixing for a while, on-and-off for 8 years. The stuff I'm putting out now is still short of "satisfactory". I can understand that you hear your mix and find it flat, lacking impact and volume, and sounding a bit like everything is playing over eachother rather than everything having it's own space in the mix.

 

The first thing to understand about mixing (which most likely was mentioned in the course you took, but just as a refresher) is that the volume of your different instruments is only half the battle. The other half is frequency management, which is done with an equalizer (stereo image is also important for clarity and separation, i.e. panning, delay, etc., but not nearly as crucial as equalization). Using an equalizer on each of your instruments is how you are able to make room for your sounds.

 

For example, that hi-hat that comes in at the 1:00 minute mark is pretty loud. I would drop it by about.. 5-10 decibels. Then, on the piano and guitar tracks, notch out a small area where the hi-hat can shine through. I find that hi-hats have a peak around 10,000hz, so if you take out a little bit of the piano and guitar at 10,000hz, then you should be able to hear the hi-hat even more clearly than when the volume was higher.

 

If 10khz isn't the magic number, you can check where the loudest part of the hi-hat is yourself. Simply pop an eq on to the hi-hat track, open it and press "analyze". The eq will show a peak where the volume is highest, then notch out those frequencies on the piano/guitar. This is how you create space for the sounds in your mix.

 

I'll give another eq tip for your track, because I feel the piano and guitar are colliding a lot. They are both trying to play in the 500hz - 3000hz range. I would use equalization to reduce the higher frequencies of the guitar, and reduce the lower frequencies of the piano. I would use shelf bands specifically, which are the bands that are 2nd to last in the Logic equalizer, the last being "cutting" or "passing" bands and the middle 4 being the "bell-curve" or "notching" bands.

 

Sorry for the ramble.. i could go on and on trying to explain all of what I learned in 8 years (which isn't enough to teach someone how to mix music properly)

 

Please read these blog-guides for more info on equalization and mixing in general:

 

https://www.waves.com/blog

 

https://www.izotope.com/en/blog/mixing.html

 

This next one should be extra helpful for you, pulled off the Waves blog:

 

Guide to Separation and Clarity in your mix

 

that one was written 5 days ago, there are literally dozens if not hundreds of guides out there and I recommend if you're serious about music you read them when you're not mixing (or while you are) and PRACTICE THE TECHNIQUES you learn so you can hear the difference in action and train your ears/gain experience.

 

It's a long road to the top if you want to rock and roll.

 

Good luck!

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