This post is going to be about how I mixed and mastered “The Power Of Love” by Georgie.
“The Power Of Love” was a tricky song to mix. I had a lot of difficulty getting the levels to a suitable balance; this was due to issues with the piano tracks. This was my fault entirely as I played the piano and held the sustain pedal to long. This has made the piano sound washy at certain points within the song. This meant I was unable to compress the piano, as this washy hum would be brought up in the mix. Creating a song that was unbearable to listen too.
In the end I found that I got the levels to a balance that worked, yet the piano was somewhat inconsistent when the chorus starts. My playing style is very dynamic, so when the chorus comes in I played louder, but not to loud that I could not get the levels right.
In the picture above you can see that the XY coincident pair of STC-1’s have been panned 50% to their assigned directions. No compression or EQ was used within the mixing process. As previously mentioned compression was not an option due to the washy hum of the sustain pedal being held to long. Whereas to EQ out the hum would damage the overall tone of the piano, as trying to remove the hum would remove the low end i.e. the bass notes played within the song.
The main vocals (above) and the backing vocals (below) both went through the same process when mixing. Pro Tools D3 Comp/Limiter plug-in and then Pro Tools Dverb Reverb plug-in.
The compressor was necessary as Georgie has a very diverse vocal range and is very dynamic. The vocal seemed jumpy in places, especially within the chorus. Both the main vocal and backing vocals did this and did not sit well within the mix. I compressed the main vocal slightly but not to much, as to keep some of the dynamic range but just keeping in contained and smooth and not sudden and harsh.
Both vocals were compressed using a soft knee, a 3:0:1 compression ratio and an average of -6dB gain reduction. The Dverb Reverb plug-in was used to help the vocalist within the mix as well as the compression. The reverb was not set-up in it’s own auxiliary and routed to the vocal tracks. I set it up in line and after the D3 compressor. I did this because I set the overall level of the vocals using the compression and did not want to the compress the reverb. So putting the reverb after the compression means that your editing a treated vocal and getting the desired effect.
Overall the mixing process for “The Power Of Love” was a bit tricky. Getting the levels to the point where the song feels as a whole and not unbalanced was not easy but I feel I have achieved in getting a sombre yet emotive mix. As well as balanced.
I mastered “The Power Of Love” using Pro Tools built in mastering limiter Maxim. The threshold was set as -0.1dB and the track was set specifically in 16 bit 41.1kHz to meet the red book CD regulations. All four mixed tracks were imported into a new Pro Tools session to get the the volume level equal. Each track had to flow between one another on playback. Mastering the four tracks as a whole was a little bit tricky, due to the versatility of all four tracks and how different they are. However I feel I managed to get a comfortable and balanced Mastered CD.