How to remix a song in 3 easy steps!

Production & Mastering like a boss

So - on track 1 you have your vocal line, and on tracks 2 and more you have your music bed. What you now need to do in order to create the really well mastered sound is to add some effects here and there.

In Audition I will always add compression to the overall track and often this is just a simple as selecting 'pop master' or 'broadcast' presets found within the Multiband compressor and adjusting it accordingly, tweaking where I want the high frequencies 'squashed' and where I want the bass or kick to be more pronounced. There is a whole science behind using compressors, but just these effect alone can achieve some excellent results, and again you can monitor the whole thing in real time.

Since you're running this in multitrack mode - your vocals are still on a separate track - you can play around with other effects such as reverbs & delays on the vocals and in just certain places. For example - the vocal phrase at the end of a verse might trail off with an echo before - boom - into the bouncing chorus, or you may have a huge reverb at the end of the song to give it that final touch. Either way - it's entirely a musical creative decision and not something that can be explained easily, but more something you will have to find out yourself by playing around with the multitude of effects found in nearly all sound editors available, but one thing is almost certainly essential is that you apply compression to the final mix to level the sounds.

This is the very technique professional recording studio engineers use to create the 'quality professional' sound you hear on chart releases, so I strongly encourage you to spend time reading up on the best methods, but to give you an overall idea of what compression does - it's limits and squashes the levels of certain instruments so that they don't take over the whole audio spectrum when they play. A kick drum can be extremely loud and completely drown vocals out, but a compressor will limit the sound of the kick for just the very fraction of time required allowing the vocals (and other instruments) to be heard clearly and as they should. The same goes for bass and other booming instruments, and when used subtly will give your entire track an overall polished sound, without too many peaks & troughs in your final mix.


Credit where it's due for producing a far superior remix to the one I created for this article - This remix is immense!

It's also a great example of creating a completely new 'soundbed' by using elements from the original in an entirely different way.

Pat Lock "Homies Wear" remix.

Much thanks to Shut The Font Door (STFD).