What is parallel compression and when should I use it?:

parralell[sic] compression is when you double a track and compress one copy very hard, and mix it under the original. It preserves the dynamics of the instrument but makes it sound more solid.

Help me learn to properly mix tracks.

The key lesson I learned was to use EQ to give each instrument its own clear part of the audio spectrum. If the bass is filling the low frequence, CUT BASS on everything else. Cut treble on the bass. Think of the mix as a jigsaw puzzle of frequencies, with each instrument filling a part of the puzzle.

Widening a mix:

As a sound moves further away, the treble dies away faster than the bass frequencies, so the sound becomes less clear. This is the case when using reverb; a really distant sound has very little high frequency content in the reverberated signal reaching your ears. In terms of dynamics, distant sounds are dynamically flat; ie, very compressed, whereas close up sounds are uncompressed and have strongly varying dynamics.

If you charge someone for your time as a recording or mix engineer, don’t undercharge:

$20/song is absolutely unacceptable. From what everyone has been saying, numbers like that really tend to hurt the industry, especially for engineers and studio owners. I live in Orlando, FL and there’s a guy down here (I won’t name names) that runs a studio called Gridlock and charges $700/song. And to be honest, for his level of work and list of credentials, that is still a damn good deal.

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