By Jeff Strong

Mixing is an art, and there is no one way to mix a song. Digital recording lets you take the time you want and allows you to create as many mixes as you want without worrying about messing up the sound. With this freedom comes opportunity. Here are some tips to making alternate mixes of your music:

  • Save each mix as a separate song. You can name them Mix1, Mix2.

  • Think across genres. A country song can go folk or even rock based on how you mix it. Drop the dobro and add a fiddle solo to give the song a more roots feel. You don’t even have to go to the extreme of adding tracks. Putting a dance beat in a rock tune can give it a more electronic dance music (EDM) feel. Dropping the drums or swapping a machine beat can also change the feel significantly.

  • Go unplugged. Your song may work dropping everything but the vocals and guitar. Consider an acoustic mix to go with your full-blown production.

  • Make a radio-ready cut. For the most part, songs played on the radio are fairly short (they used to be about three minutes). Consider cutting the guitar solo after the bridge or dropping the three repeats of the chorus to make a more compact song.

  • Make an extended, producer’s cut. On the other hand, how about an extended cut? You can indulge yourself and add a solo or perhaps another verse.

Fans love alternate mixes of their favorite songs. Chances are, you as the artist also love to create alternate versions of your favorite songs. If this is the case, it’s a win-win for you and your listeners.