Can You Mix A Radio Rock Hit 100% ITB? FAQ Friday
Can You Mix A Radio Rock Hit 100% ITB? Yes! It really is possible, and so many mixes now are made entirely, 100% in the box. Actually, I would say 80-90% of mixes you hear today are made entirely in…
Building an Affordable Dolby Atmos Room with Kali Audio
What is Dolby Atmos? Dolby Atmos goes beyond the ordinary listening experience and puts you inside the song in a new spatial way, revealing every detail of the music with unparalleled clarity and depth Enter to WIN 1 of 3…
The Best Pitch Shifter VSTs in 2021 [Free & Paid]

A pitch shifter is a versatile tool for both fine pitch correction as well as heavy-handed effects. Auto-Tune is one of the most well known pitch shifters in history; it’s also a perfect example of how correction can be subtle…

How The Rolling Stones Turned Record Company Pressure Into a Rock Classic: “Get Off of My Cloud”
In the fall of 1965, The Rolling Stones found themselves overwhelmed by the immense popularity of their hit single, “(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction” and the pressure to follow that accomplishment with another great track was mounting.  In a remarkable…
How to Use Arpeggiators: 5 Tips to Instantly Enhance Melody & Rhythm

An arpeggiator is a common synthesizer feature. It’s an easy way to quickly add interest and movement to a chord progression. We’ll explore what an arpeggiator is, as well as offer some tips on using them in your own music!…

HUGE sound from SMALL speakers! EVE Audio SC205 Speakers
The SC205 is a two-way system with a 5" woofer. It might seem like a small speaker, but it definitely packs a punch. With an extended bass frequency response and an astounding output level, the SC205 will easily fill your…
Neve Summing Review | Inside UA’s LUNA

Neve summing is an optional extension that integrates seamlessly into Universal Audio’s proprietary recording system/DAW, LUNA. The emulation intends to provide the width and dimension of analog summing for individual channels or whole mixes; currently, it’s the only authentic emulation…

How To Recreate The Beatles ‘Let It Be’ Recording Process with Clay Blair
The Beatles are arguably the most influential band in music history: With over one billion records sold and fans camping outside of their concert venues days in advance just to get a front row seat, The Beatles have shaped the…
12 Best Analog Summing Mixers in 2021

A summing mixer is a very interesting, if not often overlooked or misunderstood, piece of gear. Like most pieces of hardware, summing mixers vary in mileage; some have no more than a few knobs, while others have a slew of…

Best UAD Plugins for Vocals

Over 20 years ago, Universal Audio ushered in a new standard for plugins and interfaces. UAD’s plugin catalog is a huge collection of some of the best analog emulations out there. Most importantly, the software runs on dedicated DSP supplied by…

The 12 Best UAD Plugins in 2021

Universal Audio has a decades-long reputation as one of the premier manufacturers of pro audio equipment. Bill Putnam started the company in 1958 and was a pioneer his entire life. Putnam designed many products under different companies throughout the course…

9 Best Mellotron Plugins / 2021 [Free & Paid]

When the original Mellotron debuted in 1963, it was a groundbreaking new instrument. The range of sounds you could get from a keyboard were limited in the days before digital synthesizers, but the Mellotron introduced impressive new technology. Today, we’re…

Mixing with Dolby Atmos: Brad Wood (Liz Phair, Smashing Pumpkins, The Bangles)
Brad Wood, a record producer and mixer since 1988, has produced hundreds of albums including groundbreaking debuts by Liz Phair, Veruca Salt, Sunny Day Real Estate, Ben Lee, Pete Yorn & Placebo. He has also produced career highlight albums for artists like Smashing Pumpkins, mewithoutYou,…
How to Sidechain in Ableton (Beginner’s Guide)

Sidechain compression in Ableton is a useful mixing technique that allows you to do things like separate the bass from the kick. For Ableton users working in EDM/hip-hop/pop, where there’s lots of competing low-end information, sidechain compression is indispensable! What…

“John Barleycorn Must Die”: Traffic’s 18th Century Ballad for the 20th Century
When Steve Winwood entered the studio in 1970 after the breakup of his supergroup Blind Faith, he intended to record a solo album. However, with the recruitment of two of his former Traffic bandmates, that solo album turned into Traffic’s…
Kenny Aronoff Drum Recording Tips & Studio Tour
What do John Mellencamp, Sir Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr, The Rolling Stones, Lady Gaga, Bruno Mars, Sting, Bob Dylan, Bruce Springsteen, Bob Seger, Dave Grohl, Elton John, Johnny Cash, Willie Nelson, Jon Bon Jovi, Steven Tyler, The Smashing Pumpkins, Meatloaf,…
Which Free Autotune Plugin Really Works?

Antares Audio Technologies introduced their proprietary Auto-Tune software in 1997. The purpose was to correct off-key pitches in real-time for perfectly tuned vocals or instruments. Autotune is a colloquial term now, frequently understood by artists as a catch-all for heavily…

Nashville Engineer & Mixer Rachael Moore Talks ‘The Nashville Machine’
After graduating from Full Sail with a Bachelors of Science in Audio Production, Rachael decided to relocate to Nashville in hopes of pursuing audio engineering among the best in the music capital of the world. She did just that by…
Best Way to Get PULTEC EQ in Your Home Studio

The Pultec EQ is one of the most revered pieces of analogue equipment ever made. Any mention of it is usually followed by some form of the words ‘magic’ and ‘musical,’ and it’s been a standard piece of studio equipment…

Oeksound Soothe 2 Plugin Review

Oeksound Soothe is touted by the Finnish plugin developer as a ‘dynamic resonance suppressor.’ It’s designed to tame the harshness we sometimes associate with digital recordings, or even just poorly recorded material. Though it wasn’t the first plugin to try…

Kristian Kohle’s GrindStein Ultimate Metal Plug In Review
Precisely modeled in collaboration with Klirrton Manufaktur and producer Kristian Kohle from Kohlekeller Studio, the Grindstein is the official analog modeled simulation suite of their ultimate death metal preamp, along with the cutting edge Schnauze noise gate and the new…
Beyerdynamic DT 990 Pro Review

Beyerdynamic’s classic DT lineup, featuring the 770, 880, and 990s, is a trusted range of studio reference headphones. Each pair offers a unique monitoring experience for music production or hi-fi listening. The Beyerdynamic DT 990 Pro headphones are an open-back…

Best Mic for Rap Vocals $1000 & Under

Access to the best microphone in your price range is paramount for recording rap vocals. They’re the #1 thing that has to sound great; we can forgive a beat ripped from YouTube if the vocals sound crisp and professional. Even…

Positive Grid Spark Amp Review | Is It Worth It?

Feature-packed practice amps are all the rage. Though not a new concept, these portable desktop devices—or, ‘coffee table-top,’ ‘sofa-top,’ you name it—started to incorporate tech beyond what we’ve seen in standard practice amps of yesteryear (like in the long-running Line…

You Asked For It! Adam Audio S3H Speaker Demo
ADAM Audio monitors have earned a worldwide reputation as the preeminent tool for sound engineers based on technological innovations that we’ve established in the field of loudspeaker technology. Check out the Adam Audio S3H Speakers here! The S3H builds on…
Types of Audio Compressors and Their Uses

There are 5 primary types of audio compressors from the analogue world that software emulates. Different hardware makes use of certain internal components and designs for various styles of compression. If you’ve only ever used plugins, you’d be totally forgiven…

“My Hero”: An Anthem for the Ordinary
When Dave Grohl broke into the music industry in the early nineties, he was almost immediately recognized as one of the greatest drummers in rock music. But by 1995, he had also proven himself to be a phenomenal songwriter, guitarist…
STUDIO TOUR with Platinum-Selling Producer Andrew Wells (Halsey, Celine Dion, X Ambassadors)
Andrew Wells is a platinum-selling producer and multi-instrumentalist from Los Angeles. He’s co-written and/or produced for artists spanning all genres including Halsey, Celine Dion, Phoebe Bridgers, James Bay, Borns, X Ambassadors, 5 Seconds Of Summer, Fall Out Boy, Young The…
Dexed VST | Free Yamaha DX7 Plugin

Dexed VST by Digital Suburban is a free software emulation of the coveted Yamaha DX7. The first successful digital synthesizer ever, the DX7 changed the course of modern synthesis. Free VST Plugins: Dexed Dexed VST is a multi-platform, multi-format plugin…

The Basics of EQ with Mark Rubel (Rascal Flatts, Fall Out Boy, Ludacris)
Mark Rubel has taught audio, music technology, music business, and the history of rock to thousands of students since 1985 at various colleges and universities. Before becoming the Director of Education for The Blackbird Academy, he served as Audio and…
5 Quick Automation Mixing Tricks
Automation is the secret to a truly great mix! Simple volume automation of instruments can save the heartache of trying to replicate dynamics with complex compression techniques. Automating plug ins can give them multiple purposes adding both subtle ear candy…
The Best Chord Generator VST [Free and Paid]

A great chord progression is one of many factors that contributes to a quality piece of music. It forms a template, or the backbone, from which the rest of the song can be built. But finding chords that go together…

How to Write a Catchy Chorus | Essential Ingredients

There’s a lot of pressure on songwriters when it comes to creating the grand hook. Understanding how to write a chorus that listeners can sing along and identify with is a huge undertaking. The chorus is the most important part…

Top 10 Transient Shaper Plugins

A transient shaper lets you control the attack and sustain of a signal. Unlike a compressor, they do not affect the level or the entire envelope of a sound. Transient shapers (also called ‘designers’) can increase or decrease the attack,…

Output Exhale Review | Vocal VST

Output Exhale has been out for some time now, but it’s no less relevant than it was at release. Catering to today’s modern producers who want heavily stylized vocals in their productions, Exhale is a virtual instrument full of rich…

Squarp Pyramid Review: 64-Track Sequencer

The Squarp Pyramid Mk3 sequencer is considered ‘the perfect brain for your musical setup, from studio to stage.’ It combines a powerful 64-track sequencer, a looper, a rhythm generator, a real-time effects processor, a MIDI controller, and an I/O interface.…

What Does Gluing Your Mix Together Mean? FAQ Friday
I met Rick Beato a few years ago when he worked at my old studio. Rick is amazing songwriter and was hired during this session to help the band write their songs. Which I think answers a question that I…
What Does Gluing Your Mix Together Mean? FAQ Friday
What Does Gluing Your Mix Together Mean? You'll hear the term “glue” thrown around a lot in discussions about modern music mixing. Generally, it's used to describe a type of processing that is usually applied to the master buss or sub-groups…
ASCAP vs. BMI vs. SESAC: All About PROs

If you’re a performing artist you know the value of royalties. Regardless of the size of the check, they show up every quarter like clockwork. But they don’t just appear out of nowhere; those royalty payments are the work of…

The Most Important Background Vocals Trick
In this episode of MakeMineMusic, Marc Daniel Nelson shows a sneaky but extremely effective trick to get your background vocals to stay under the lead which in turn makes the lead vocal even stronger. Is this the most important Background…
Ableton vs Pro Tools | Choosing a DAW

In the current age of music production, we have virtually endless tools at our disposal. It’s overwhelming when you’re just starting out because you want to set foot on the so-called ‘correct’ path. In regards to DAWs, everybody has an…

Sausage Fattener | All-In-One Saturation/Dynamics Plugin

Production duo Dada Life teamed up with Tailored Noise to release Sausage Fattener 10 years ago. Over time it’s become a cult classic in the plugin world, known both for its performance as well as its humorous name and interface. Don’t…

Types of Music Royalties: How to Make Money as an Artist

Music royalties are a complicated legal game. What happens behind the scenes for artists, songwriters, publishers, or other copyright holders to get paid is best left to lawyers who know what they’re doing. But’s important for artists to at least…

“Songs Are Like Tattoos”: How Joni Mitchell’s Blue Transformed The Singer-Songwriter
In 1971, Joni Mitchell released one of the most influential and powerfully introspective albums of all time, Blue.  In a tumultuous period of her young life, learning to balance fame alongside changing personal relationships, Mitchell held nothing back. She shared…