Last updated on October 5, 2018 by Rob Mayzes

If, like a lot of people, you’re strapped for time when it comes to making music, you need to make sure you’re going about all of this efficiently and saving time where you can.

In this video I’ll reveal the 5 things you can pretty much ignore if you want to make music faster.

 

It’s like a lot of people you’re strapped for time when it comes to making music.

You need to make sure you’re going about all of this efficiently and saving time where you can.

So, in this video I’m going to reveal the 5 things that you can pretty much ignore if you want to make music faster.

And also recommend you download our mixing workflow cheat sheet to make sure you’re mixing fast as well.

There is a link on screen now or in the bio.

All right, guys how it is going?

Rob here from Musician on a Mission.

And I know what it’s like to be confined to weekends and evenings for your music and feel like you can never actually get anything done.

So, if you struggle to finish tracks to actually get something out there and release music then I think you’re going to find this really helpful.

So, let’s dive right in with the first thing you can ignore if you want to make music faster automating the lead vocal.

Now, this used to take me 1 or 2 hours in pretty much every mix and I’ve made videos about it in the past.

I still think it’s a really good thing to do to spend an hour going through automating every word or phrase until you’ve got kind of a perfectly consistent vocal.

Especially when you’re working with music where the vocal is just integral.

However, many of you won’t have an hour or two to spare to actually do that.

So, what I recommend you do instead is use a plug-in like a Waves Vocal Rider to actually automate the vocal for you, and then you can go in and tweak it where it kind of messes up.

The other option is to avoid automation altogether and just use compression instead.

If you choose that route you use two stacked compressors.

So, use a faster compressor first just to catch the peaks, and then use a slower compressor second to just level out the overall dynamics.

It’s going to sound more natural that way than just slamming it with one compressor.

The second thing you can avoid or completely ignore is recording drum.

Now, I know if you’re a drummer you’re going to be thinking well I can’t just avoid that altogether.

So, this one is targeted more at solo musicians who are doing the guitar, the vocals, the drums everything.

The reason I think is often a good idea to avoid recording drums is because it’s such a complex complicated instrument to record.

You need loads of microphones.

You need to spend a lot of time setting up the kit.

Tuning the kit.

Picking the right room, and then when it comes to mixing it’s going to be a lot more complicated as well.

You have to worry about phase and all these different issues.

So, if you want to go for a bit more of a modern polished sound then I recommend using either drum software like EZ Drummer, Superior Drummer or recording a real drum kit but then replacing the kick and snare with samples which is going to be a big part of the sound.

However, if you do want to go for a more authentic live feel then you can’t beat the sound of real drums.

So, you just need to figure out where you fall on this topic.

The third thing you can avoid or just ignore altogether are advanced mixing techniques.

I am a huge proponent of sticking to the fundamentals.

Really nailing the stuff that makes a big difference like EQ, and compression, and volume balancing instead of spending loads of time learning advanced techniques like parallel compression, side-chain compression or multiband compression.

Basically, any form of compression that doesn’t involve just throwing a compressor on the channel.

Don’t get me wrong compression rocks.

You need compression but those advanced techniques and there are loads more out there unrelated to compression.

They are not going to have a huge impact on your music.

If your mixes already sound awesome you want to take them from good to great then of course you need to learn some of these techniques.

But if you’re still struggling to get pass demo quality.

If you’re just trying to hit that kind of level of professionalism.

You’re not quite there yet then focus on really getting to grips with the fundamentals.

It’s going to save you a ton of time and money.

So, you don’t need to go out and buy all these plug-ins.

The fourth thing you can avoid or completely ignore is home mastering or DIY mastering.

What I mean by that is just mastering your own tracks.

First of all, it’s a whole new topic that you’re going to have to invest a lot of time into learning.

Secondly, I always recommend you avoid mastering your own track because it’s good to have someone else to have that final listen and make any final tweaks.

Who hasn’t heard the track already and isn’t used to hearing it and isn’t listening to in your room.

And third it’s one of the easiest things to get help with.

You can use automated mastering services like LANDR or Aria.

They tend to be hit or miss but sometimes they work really well or you could hire a professional mastering engineer for those really important projects like big singles or EPs or albums that you’re releasing.

It won’t cost that much and the benefits are huge.

And the last thing number 5 is try to avoid giving in to GAS – Gear Acquisition Syndrome.

Now, that’s easier said than done.

That’s like saying hey man just don’t breathe for a while.

I know what’s it’s like to always want more plug-ins and new microphone, and new guitar.

But we end up investing so much time and energy into researching these things.

Deciding which stuff to buy then you have to learn it, and then when it actually comes to mixing if you have a bunch of premium plug-ins you have to stop and think hey which plug-in should I use in this situation.

Now, I know everyone is going to give in to this a little bit but just try to avoid it where you can.

Try to have just a go-to EQ plug-in.

A go-to compressor or maybe a couple more, ut have your workhorse plug-in that you use most of the time.

And then, get use to it.

Learn it really well, so that you can be really effective with it.

And when it comes to gear you can really get a great sound with affordable equipment.

I don’t need to talk about that.

There’s a bunch of videos out there on that topic.

Personally, I think this is a huge area where you can save both time and money.

Next time you’re tempted to buy something just ask yourself the question.

Do I need this and is this going to make a dramatic improvement to my sound.

Because if you don’t need it and it’s not going to move the needle it’s not going to have a big impact then you might be better off investing your time and money elsewhere.

So, there you go 5 things I recommend you avoid.

Now, if you want to actually make music fast and that’s one of your main concerns because you only have weekends and evenings and if feels like you never get anything done then you also need to make sure you have a good workflow.

So, I put together a workflow cheat sheet that will walk you through mixing workflows that you can use to speed up that process.

Because I know that’s the area where most people tend to struggle and spend a lot of time.

It’s completely free.

So, if you want to start mixing faster just head to the link on screen now or in the description.

And if you’re new around here don’t forget to subscribe and hit the notification bell.

So, that’s all from me.

I am Rob from Musician on a Mission.

And remember Create Regardless.

 

Audio professional, musician and founder of Musician on a Mission.

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