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Mixing under substance
Old 24th January 2009
  #1
Gear Addict
 
🎧 15 years
Mixing under substance

Weird post but an honest one.

When dealing with the talent tracking I'm as straight as an arrow as there is so much going on to concentrate on that you don't want to **** up.

Mixdown lately has turned into party time and the product has been getting better with the edge off and am actually getting busier. More work than I'm capable of doing while holding down a day job at the same time. I do admit I feel like **** 4 days a week in the morning but things are rolling along pretty well at this point.

Is there anyone else who has used substance to push down inhibition and make more creative, flowing decisions in music?
Old 24th January 2009
  #2
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by demel ➑️
Weird post but an honest one.

When dealing with the talent tracking I'm as straight as an arrow as there is so much going on to concentrate on that you don't want to **** up.

Mixdown lately has turned into party time and the product has been getting better with the edge off and am actually getting busier. More work than I'm capable of doing while holding down a day job at the same time. I do admit I feel like **** 4 days a week in the morning but things are rolling along pretty well at this point.

Is there anyone else who has used substance to push down inhibition and make more creative, flowing decisions in music?
Of course there is...whatever floats your boat...but I would encourage you that you don't necessarily need it and are better off working straight...it will start affecting your judgement at some point...if you can do it high, you can do it better straight....mix time for most pros is quite serious and distractions in the control room are not generally tolerated...you are right about one thing...there is a lot of responsibility come mix time...I guess the trick is to relax enough to have some fun with it and stay serious enough to handle your gig properly...
Old 24th January 2009 | Show parent
  #3
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Tony Shepperd's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Personally I don't get it.
Now of course, I have never done drugs. I've never had a cigarette or coffee or a Coke for the matter.
But all of my friends who've "mixed under the influence" of something, always tend to come back and regret the mixes in the weeks, months and years to come.
IMO, it's a short term fix that in the end, will lead your skills nowhere.
Old 24th January 2009 | Show parent
  #4
Lives for gear
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tony Shepperd ➑️
Now of course, I have never done drugs. I've never had a cigarette or coffee or a Coke for the matter.
Wow.

Just curious - are you a member of the LDS Church?

You haven't missed anything, btw. That stuff just damages your brain and shortens your life span and rots your teeth, etc, etc. There's nothing cool about that stuff, and I wish I could say i've never had to deal with addictions.

I like what Mike Stavrou writes about in Mixing With Your Mind ... he talks about a brain expert with the gear that reads brain patterns who analysed his head when he was mixing. He said that apart from some monks deeply experienced in meditation, he had never seen anything like the altered state that his brain was in while he was mixing ...

I think that if the music isn't doing it for you straight, then mixing stoned won't help anything. There are other ways of getting random inspiration for mixing, and Mike explains some really wierd ways (like mixing backwards etc) that don't require any substance abuse...
Old 24th January 2009 | Show parent
  #5
CDS
Lives for gear
 
CDS's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Ok, not doing drugs I can understand but:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tony Shepperd ➑️
or coffee or a Coke for the matter.
How the heck have you done it? I couldn't survive without a Coke, coffee, or a good pack of Vivarin for the years I was in the studio...

There are only a few people, maybe only 2 I have met that have so much natural energy they can even dodge falling asleep after a full does of NyQuil. They both are in the music business also lol.
Old 24th January 2009 | Show parent
  #6
Lives for gear
 
FireMoon's Avatar
 
2 Reviews written
🎧 15 years
it's totally down to personal taste..One of the most pernikity everything in its' right place remix, remake, remodel producers in the world is an inveterate hash smoker..and he's best known for his *pop music*.. he starts the day listening to takes with a big fat bifta that would floor a rhino with a bazz on...

Some of the most whacked out, soundscapes, come piano teetering on the edge of roof but never quite falling, mixes, are done by guys who make your typical Havard dean look like Jerry Garcia..

The guy who made Jogging a world wide craze, died of a heart attack..That French lass who died at 120 odd, years of age, drank and smoked every day of her adult life..Go figure...

You have a problem when you start obsessing over the drugs more than the music...

The trick is to make mixes that sound good whatever state you are in...How you get there, is your own personal journey of discovery...

You want a way of seeing how mixes sound different in different states..simple... Set up the same monitoring system in two different rooms , one cold, one hot, then listen to the same track in both...
Old 24th January 2009 | Show parent
  #7
Lives for gear
 
🎧 15 years
<< I've never had a cigarette or coffee or a Coke for the matter. >>

Really.... you never even tasted coffee or Coke.

Seriously, you must be in great health. Do you have any vices?
Old 24th January 2009 | Show parent
  #8
Lives for gear
 
FeatheredSerpent's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tony Shepperd ➑️
Personally I don't get it.
Now of course,
What's so 'of course' about it?! I would say in the music world, you're in the minority, but then I have more experience on the artist side than the engineering side.

Thing is, you talk about it leading your skills nowhere etc, but you've never tried it, so what do you actually know about it?

That kind of thing is really irritating. I'm not necessarily 'pro' this or that, as in I won't be actively promoting illegal substances on the streets (not any more anyway heh), but there are many different ways to skin a cat as they say, and it is up to each individual to find out what puts them in the zone best.
If I was going to listen to someone that said it probably wasn't the best idea, then it would certainly not be someone who had never indulged and didn't know whart they were talking about.
By the way, if you're avoiding caffeine, I hope you don't drink tea - look up caffeine on wikipedia and see how heavy a dose you can get just from a normal cup of char.

I often write music when stoned, ideas flow more easily, but any editing and arrangement I have to be straight otherwise it just gets too boring.

When I've done a first mix, I'll light up a large spliff, turn the screens off, the lights down and just listen to see if I caught the vibe, then go back to it the next day to mix again when straight.
Ad infinitum...
Old 24th January 2009 | Show parent
  #9
Lives for gear
 
DontLetMeDrown's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tony Shepperd ➑️
Personally I don't get it.
Now of course, I have never done drugs. I've never had a cigarette or coffee or a Coke for the matter.
But all of my friends who've "mixed under the influence" of something, always tend to come back and regret the mixes in the weeks, months and years to come.
IMO, it's a short term fix that in the end, will lead your skills nowhere.
One time I drank this 64 oz soda, and my mix came out totally f--ked!

No, but seriously, that's impressive! I commend you. I don't think I've ever encoutered anyone who can say that. Have you ever drank decaf coffee or soda? Man I don't know if you realize what you're missing-- it's like Neve + 1176 + sugar on your tongue. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED. I'd rather die tomorrow than never drink coke and coffee again.
Old 24th January 2009 | Show parent
  #10
Gear Nut
 
🎧 15 years
Aside from real heavy stuff drinking is probably the worst since it numbs the senses. It always makes music seem faster to me. And Im not talking about a stripper club. Ive personally never seen an engineer drink in a studio but many horrible live sound men drink on the job. I learned the hard way to never do shots with the sound guy.
Lots of great producers have or had some substance issues.
Ive heard that if you stop using caffeine you will have more energy. When I used to exercise I never drank caffeine and had more energy. I thought it was only because of the excercise.

As far as the hash mixer. I think I know who it is. A local band was blowing up and mixer guy (that is in one or two adds in every music mag I have said "lets get all of our habits out on the table". they all went aound the room. Some smoked cigs or drank. they were all under 21 at the time. when It got to him he pulled out a pack of cigarettes loaded with joints. Smoking them like cigs all day long, mixing right along.
Old 24th January 2009 | Show parent
  #11
Lives for gear
 
Joram's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Drugs change your physical and mental state and change your attitude towards yourself and the rest of the world and therefore your behaviour. You have to decide yourself whether that helps you in mixing. For me it does not.

I started a poll about the time of the day people like to work. The morning and afternoon works best for me because I am able to make clear decisions and work more intuitive. That is what it is about (in my opinion at least).
I have seen enough to find out that a lot of drugs users at the end make a fool of themselves. (Couple of weeks ago I had a funeral of a great guitar player .....)
Old 24th January 2009 | Show parent
  #12
Gear Addict
 
kojak's Avatar
 
10 Reviews written
🎧 10 years
Depends on what stage of mixing you're at as well...for example, if i'm doing something tedious like editing drums, or just making sure the bass player hit all his ones with the kick drum and this kind of thing, there's nothing wrong with tossing back a beer or two...to a point obviously. When you're doing something really intense like EQing a main vocal or choosing a reverb for a drum track though, i usually find doing it straight ends up having the best results. Definitely coffee is a must though.

That being said, after you've spent several hours doing something, then bringing the band back in, lighting a special cigarette and letting them hear it is usually good times. There's been the odd time I'll come up with a cool idea for like, backwards reverb or whatever while high, but those are fairly rare mind you...most decisions made in that state seem cool at the time, but listening back the next day they reveal themselves to be typical stoner kind of sounds (8 second long reverb tails, delay on every track, 13 layered backwards guitar solos, etc). but certainly give it a try if you feel like it...you can always go back and change it.
Old 24th January 2009 | Show parent
  #13
Moderator
 
psycho_monkey's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by DontLetMeDrown ➑️
One time I drank this 64 oz soda, and my mix came out totally f--ked!

No, but seriously, that's impressive! I commend you. I don't think I've ever encoutered anyone who can say that. Have you ever drank decaf coffee or soda? Man I don't know if you realize what you're missing-- it's like Neve + 1176 + sugar on your tongue. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED. I'd rather die tomorrow than never drink coke and coffee again.
Was it only me that got a healthy hit of sarcasm in Tony's first comment? or is it my Brit mind that assumes sarcasm in any incredulous statement?!
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