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3 Simple Mix Moves for a PRO Guitar & Vocal Production

So many of us (me included) start out as acoustic guitarists and singers looking to record our material from the comfort of our home studios, free of time limitations and financial constraint. And, even if that's not your story, you're certainly going to come across many singer/songwriters who want your skills and know how to help them achieve pro results.

But, making the leap from a decent sounding mix to a PRO sounding one can be a tricky path to follow so I want to share with you 3 big wins which I recently experienced recording and mixing my own acoustic cover version from my home studio.

1. Tape Plugins. If you're mixing an acoustic guitar and a vocal, tape is your best friend. I even recently heard Paul McCartney say in an interview how much he likes the effect of tape on an acoustic so we're in good company. It adds a sweet amount of gluey compression and saturation that just works. I like Waves J37 for this but there's a lot of choices out there and Analog Obsession are well worth checking out for some free options

2. Mirroring EQ. You probably do this already when mixing a kick and bass drum. Where the kick is boosted you can take a surgical notch out of the bass to help the kick shine through. We can do this with guitar and voice too. I have on this occasion a boost in the upper mids and I've taken a notch out of the guitar to help that vocal come forward and be present in the mix.

Top Tip: Surgical cuts, with tighter Q's help to be less destructive.

3. Stacking Compressors. One of my favourite techniques is to stack compressors. Using this method you can help achieve a modern upfront vocal without smashing it too hard and getting an over compressed, imploded sound.

Have yourself a great day!


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