What is the most beautiful sound you’ve ever heard in music?
For me, it were Freddie Mercury’s vocals on A Night At The Opera!
I’m sure many of you would have picked your favourite vocal performance as well!
Why is that?
Vocals convey emotions like no other instrument
There are unique inflections in every performance, which reveal the artist’s soul and allow us to deeply connect with the song. It’s the vocals that make us fall in love with a song and listen to it on repeat!
That’s why it’s so crucial to focus on and handle them masterfully
in every mix
Unfortunately, vocals are also one of the hardest things to get right:
- With 20db – 30db of range, they are one of the most dynamic recordings we deal with.
When you try to control these dynamics by using Compression, all of a sudden unwanted side effects appear: Over-emphasized sibilance makes the vocals sound harsh, or the Compression brings up Headphone Bleed and Air-Conditioning noise, which muddy up the whole mix.
- Another issue you might run into is that the singer has a slightly different tone in each take you’ve comped together for the final performance. – Which makes it darn near impossible to find the perfect EQ settings!
- PLUS there are just so many approaches to mixing vocals in general: You may want to craft a soft and intimate vocal sound for a singer-songwriter track, an agressive, in-your-face Rock vocal, or create a stadium feel to go with a massive Pop production.Each of which requires completely different processing!
What am I trying to say with this?
In order to nail every vocal you mix you touch, you have to have a great arsenal of mixing techniques at your disposal – so you can cherry-pick the right approach for any situation.
Today, we’re going to stock up your vocal mixing arsenal!
Learn the techniques of 4 Grammy-Winning and Platinum-Selling Mixers, each mixing a completely different genre!
- Legendary Rock producer Cameron Webb (Sum 41, NOFX, Megadeth & Limp Bizkit) mixing a Lemmy’s vocals in the song ‚Electricity‘ by Motörhead – You heard that right: Motörhead!
- 6x Grammy-Winner Richard Furch (Prince, BoyzIIMen, Usher, Outkast, The Weeknd) mixing a modern Dancehall vocal
- 11x Grammy-Nominee Mark Needham (P!nk, Elton John, Dolly Parton, Imagine Dragons) mixing an alternative Pop vocal
- Grammy-Winner Bob Horn (Usher, Timbaland, Akon, Nelly, Brandy) crafting a prestine Pop vocal using a home studio recording
Does that sound exciting? I hope so!
All of these tutorials are exerpts of complete start-to-finish mixing classes, which include All Multitracks of the featured songs. – Yes… you can download and mix an original Motörhead song!
We have some sweet Black Friday deals coming up at promixacademy.com, where you SAVE UP TO 88%! So keep an eye out!
What you’ll learn from this tutorial:
- How to counteract the Proximity effect (Controlling the low-end of a vocal)
- Make vocals sound present and intimate without squeezing the life out of them
- How to avoid getting fooled by level differences when compressing
- Achieve a silky top-end without making the vocals sound harsh
- Shaping the tone: How to EQ homestudio vocal recording
- Mixing with FX to make Background vocals more interesting
- Controlling excessive breaths
- Dealing with headphone bleed
- Making vocals sit well in the mix
- Tracking tips: How to make the artist feel comfortable and deliver the best performance