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Thread: A topic of controversy : Artists doing their own mixing/mastering

  1. #21
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    For example, I worked with one artist who thought in massive strokes, i. e. all the finesse of a sledgehammer. "Turn this up 5 dB and that down 3 dB." I frequently am adjusting things in 1/2 or even 1/3 dB increments. Needless to say, there were differing philosophies.

    Quote Originally Posted by PookyNR View Post
    Well, yes and no. I think there are some more experienced and notable artists who are capable of good engineering work. There are also other experienced and notable artists who are not. So I am operating on the starting assumption that not everyone's mixing capabilities are equal.

    And even with some experienced talent, I still listen to some projects with surprise that engineer X would do such a thing. Some mix decisions are clearly bad - by a very wide set of standards and opinions. The Metallica record is one example. The last Van Halen album is another. (Disclaimer: I know Ross had Eddie directing the mix, so I don't fault him on that project which IMHO doesn't match the caliber of all his other excellent work.)

    All that to say, I think there is a 'better'. Some cases are less subjective than others.

  2. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scott Fraser View Post
    I don't feel there are 'standards' per se differentiating good from bad. There are conventions & orthodoxies, but that just shows a desire to adhere to other people's work, & is no guarantee of avoiding the bad. If there were really standards in mixing, the guys pushing automixing & automastering software would have a valid point.

    SF
    By "standard" I loosely mean what do you consider to be a good mix (even if it is not perfectly to your preferences). All of us have a set of internal standards by which we listen to a song and say either, "that's a decent mix" or "turn that off before I pull the plug".

    I can listen to a number of songs and think, 'that's a good mix' even though if I were at the board I'd tweak a few things. There are other songs where it's immediately clear to me that this sounds really, really bad - much like the examples I cited earlier.
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    [QUOTE=PookyNR;255517]By "standard" I loosely mean what do you consider to be a good mix (even if it is not perfectly to your preferences). All of us have a set of internal standards by which we listen to a song and say either, "that's a decent mix" or "turn that off before I pull the plug".

    I can listen to a number of songs and think, 'that's a good mix' even though if I were at the board I'd tweak a few things. There are other songs where it's immediately clear to me that this sounds really, really bad - much like the examples I cited earlier.[/QUOTE



    Yeah, the "better" and "standard" thing is pretty subjective.... but that being said.... the goal is... I think, from a band trying do their own mixes.... which one is the most "RADIO READY"? Isn't THAT the goal? Maybe not THE goal, but one that's gonna be a deciding factor. How good of a job does DISCMAKERS do on Mastering? Are home mixes ever RADIO READY?

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    Depends on the home, really, and the person setting in it.

    Terry Manning just released his own record which is just astonishingly good sounding. He did everything, including playing the drums (in some cases each drum one at a time)... I think John Fogerty did something similar way back when?

    I love the 'radio ready' thing, too... did anyone ever hear something on the radio and think "wow - that isn't radio ready?"
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wireline View Post
    I love the 'radio ready' thing, too... did anyone ever hear something on the radio and think "wow - that isn't radio ready?"

    It's like "CD Quality".

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    Sometimes, the artist that's paying the bill (and acting as producer) gets to make the mix decisions, even if they are clearly wrong in every aspect.
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    Ah Geez! I see the rub.... now I have to define "Radio Ready".

    But there IS some Professional Audio "Standard" that is "better" than "bad" and could be heard on the radio.
    And the average listener that you sell a CD to at a gig doesn't know the difference.
    You're turning your immediate fans on to your music but to reach the masses you need one done professionally.
    Unless you have some killer songs that people like. Some of our best stuff was done on a little Panasonic cassette recorder just sitting in the room. There goes that "vibe" thing again. Sometimes it just comes out right.

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    Quote Originally Posted by QNote View Post
    Sometimes, the artist that's paying the bill (and acting as producer) gets to make the mix decisions, even if they are clearly wrong in every aspect.
    Like that last Van Halen album...

    Quote Originally Posted by Zucco View Post
    And the average listener that you sell a CD to at a gig doesn't know the difference.
    In my experience among my family, friends, and acquaintances, people really do notice differences in quality and they do care about it. Often they will bear through a less than stellar production if the song is good. Sometimes, not.

    That said, many times the convenience of a small digital file outweighs being an 'audio quality purist'.
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    I recently visited a church (because I had heard great things about their band) where the band was awesome and the sound was pretty good, considering. Since I was a visitor, they handed me a Welcome packet that contained a CD of songs recorded by the band. Wow! Awesome! Excited, I placed it in my vehicle's CD player as we left the church and was shocked at the quality (or lack thereof) of the recording. There wasn't many things you could have done to the mix to make it worse. I now use that very CD (or actually a copy to protect the innocent) as an example to some clients on what not to expect in your final mix. Seriously.
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    Ah, here it is again. I didn't make up the term... "RADIO READY"... taken from DISCMAKERS FAQ section.

    Does this help with the definition and the goal of good mixing?

    "Will Mastering help me get an advantage in the marketplace?
    You bet. A properly Mastered CD gives you radio-ready sound that is sonically equivalent to any major label release. By having Mastering done to your album you provide a higher quality product with consistent tonal quality across the board, something radio DJs expect and discerning fans appreciate."




    Read more: Frequently Asked Questions http://www.discmakers.com/soundlab/f...#ixzz2j8hoN6ox

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