How to master dance music

Mastering for Dance Music — Sage Audio


Mastering for Dance Music

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Quick Answer

Mastering for Dance Music is a process that prepares dance music for distribution while making it pronounced and detailed enough to be enjoyed on consumer-grade equipment.  If performed correctly, mastering for dance music often includes louder levels that still retain transient detail and dynamic impact.

Mastering for Dance Music in DetailDance music, no matter the form it takes, has always been a popular genre.

Dance music has always been a popular genre.  No matter the format it takes or the style that’s associated with it, music lovers of any era want music they can dance to.

This makes dance music one of the most commonly played genres.  That said, dance music needs to be mastered well and mastered with consumer-grade equipment in mind.

Dance music is often played over consumer-grade equipment, making the master’s translation to those devices very important.

Although all genres are mastered with this in mind, this needs to be taken into special consideration when mastering dance music.  Odds are dance music will be played over headphones, portable BlueTooth speakers, or any other consumer-grade equipment more often than not.

For this reason, dance music needs to be mastered loud enough to sound impressive no matter the playback system. 

For mastering engineers this can present a bit of a challenge, as balancing transient retention with louder levels isn’t always the easiest thing to accomplish.

With that in mind, let’s explore how to master dance music and the technical aspects of which its comprised – including the LUFS of dance music, the frequency response of dance music, and some of the compression techniques used during dance music mastering.

The LUFS range of dance music is wide and depends on the type of dance music being mastered.

Also, we’ll consider some great sounding references you can use when mastering your dance music.

Additionally, we’ll discuss whether analog mastering or digital mastering is better suited for mastering dance music, and the reasons for why this is.

Lastly, we’ll discuss how the most common forms of dance music distribution are affecting the playback of dance music masters.

If you’ve been mastering your tracks, but want to hear an outside interpretation of your mix, send it to us here:

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How to Master Dance Music

Mastering dance music is accomplished by using low-level or upward compression, mid-side equalization, harmonic generation, and saturation, and significant but controlled limiting.  The goal of a dance master is to have an impact and to translate well to any and all consumer-grade playback systems.

Mastering dance music includes but isn’t limited to low-level compression, mid-side equalization, saturation or harmonic distortion, and aggressive limiting.

So let’s break this down a little farther and start by looking into low-level compression and how it’s accomplished.

How to Apply Low-Level Compression for a Dance Master

Essentially, low-level compression is the act of compressing a signal not to control dynamics, but to augment and accentuate quieter aspects of a signal, in turn making them more perceivable to the listener.  This effect can be used when mastering dance music to create a more compelling master.

Accomplishing low-level compression results in a more detailed master, one that translates better to multiple speaker systems, and is in turn, more enjoyable for listeners.

Low-level compression typically occurs during any compression but can be made more pronounced with additional techniques.

Low-level compression can be accomplished in a couple of ways.   The first is to use a low-level compression plugin.

One example of this type of compressor is the Waves MV2.  It captures quieter signals and expands to make them more perceivable. 

The MV2 is a useful low-level compression plugin.

If you have the MV2 or simply want to know more about it, check out our video made specifically to showcase how the MV2 can be used:


Getting the Most from Distortion Using the MV2

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A somewhat similar plugin is Softube’s transient shaper.  This plugin’s sustain function creates a similar effect by increasing the amplitude of quieter parts of a recording.

Transient shapers can have a similar effect.

If you don’t want to purchase a plugin designed specifically for low-level compression, you can also accomplish low-level compression with a parallel compression technique.

To accomplish this, send your signal to an auxiliary track using a bus send and significantly compress the signal sent to this auxiliary track.

Choose the compressor you use for parallel compression wisely. You want something with a quick enough release, but a distinct and colorful sound.

It helps to use a plugin that models itself off of a piece of hardware – this way you can also introduce some character to your signal with a little harmonic generation and stereo shaping (depending on how the plugin affects the signal).

If you want to learn more about this technique, check out our blog post and video that shows this and other compression techniques in greater detail:

Top 5 Compression Techniques

How to Apply Mid-Side Equalization for a Dance Master

Mid-side equalization can be applied when mastering dance music to both amplify and attenuate aspects of the signal you want to affect, and to widen or narrow aspects of the stereo signal.  Considering dance music utilizes a wider stereo image, mid-side equalization is an incredibly useful tool.

When using mid-side equalization, one of the quickest ways to affect your stereo image in a positive way is to create a high-pass filter on your side image and move it a little higher than 100Hz, and then to create a shelf filter on the side image above 7kHz.

Mid-Side equalizers allow you to equalize and perform stereo imaging simultaneously.

By accomplishing these two very simple steps, you effectively make your low-end mono and increase the high-frequency range’s stereo width.  This is great for dance music as it focuses your kick and bass while making the stereo image of your master more impressive.

Amplifying the side image increases the stereo width of your dance music master.

If your dance track has vocals you can also attenuate roughly 1.8kHz to 2.5kHz on the side image with a bell filter.  This way the vocals on the mid-channel are canceled or masked by any signal on the side image. 

In turn, your vocals will become more prominent.

Cutting 2kHz of the side image will make your mono vocals more prominent.

Because dance music often sports a louder kick and more crisp and prominent high end, it may be helpful to amplify some of these frequencies on the mid-channel as well – but this will really depend on the mix, so take the current frequency response into consideration before making this decision.

How to Apply Distortion for a Dance Master

Distortion in the form of harmonic generation is often applied to a dance music master to make the master sound full and more forward in terms of depth.  Harmonic distortion makes a master sound more complex and sonically pleasing and can establish impact during dynamic transitions.

Harmonic distortion occurs naturally in an electrical analog set-up.

Harmonic distortion is easy to apply when mastering.  If you’re creating a master using analog equipment than these distortions are created automatically by the hardware itself.

If you’re mastering using a digital setup, then you can introduce these harmonics by uses analog emulation plugins.  Be it tape, tube, transistor, or vinyl record emulation, harmonics will be added to your signal, making it more complex.

Analog emulation plugins can create distortion in the digital domain.

When using harmonic distortion on a dance master, you can be a bit more liberal with your application of it – in other words, dance music can contain more distortion before it becomes overbearing or distracting.  

That said, it’s still important to keep distortion within a reasonable level and to avoid excessive or superfluous harmonic generation.

If you’d like to learn more about harmonic generation as it relates to analog equipment, check out our blog post on saturation:

What is Saturation for Mixing and Mastering?

It discusses what saturation is, and how it can be applied during both mixing and mastering.

How Loud Should a Dance Master Be?

The loudness of a dance master can be measured using an integrated LUFS meter and should range from -14 LUFS on the quieter side, to -8 LUFS on the louder side.  Most dance masters are created with significant limiting and are closer to an integrated -8 LUFS.

Dance music masters should range from an integrated -14 LUFS to -8 LUFS

This will vary of course and is entirely dependent on your personal preference, as well as how much you want your dance master to be similar to other dance masters.

Considering most dance masters are made loud, it may be in your best interest to master your track on the louder side if you want to create a competitive master.

As stated earlier, although dance masters are made loud, they need to retain their transient detail and impact during playback.  The easiest way to accomplish this is to use a limiter that emphasizes transient detail.

More intense limiting can be used during a dance music master. Be sure to use a limiter with advanced functionality.

One example of this the FabFilter Pro-L and Pro-L2.  This limiter’s transient emphasis can help to restore the impact and transient detail lost from heavy compression.

Additionally, it helps to use a limiter that offers attack and release settings.  This way you can create a longer attack and shorter release setting to allow your transient to pass through your limiter unaffected.

The settings shown above are set for a more transient master.

For this reason, limiters like the Waves L1 and L2 are not the best options when mastering dance music.

It should be noted that significant limiting is mainly used to accomplish low-level compression, similar to what was detailed earlier.  By truncating transients and amplifying the entire signal, you push lower aspects of the signal into a more perceivable territory. 

As stated earlier, this can be accomplished by other means if desired.

Also, if your plan on using significant limiting, it’s best to set the output of your limiter to -0.5dB at the highest.  This will protect your master from unwanted clipping distortion both during playback and the encoding process if uploaded or distributed digitally.

If you’d like to learn more about mastering within a digital domain in a step-by-step way, check out our blog post on that topic:

What is Digital Mastering?

Or if you’d like to hear your mix professionally mastered with all analog equipment, send it to us here:

Get a Free Mastered Sample of Your Mix

Good References for Mastering Dance Music

Although dance music is a truly complex genre, it can, perhaps crudely, be broken down into two distinct camps.

That is hi-fi dance music, which is the majority of popular dance music and is predicated on clear transients and a forward sound.

And lo-fi dance music, which is typically more of an underground genre, which utilizes a more muddled sound for dramatic effect or to create a specific mood.

With those two distinctions in mind, here are two tracks that you can reference, each being great examples of and references for their specific subsections of modern dance music.

Hi-Fi Dance Master – ‘Roses (Imanbek Remix)’ by SAINt JHN‘Roses (Imanbek Remix)’ by SAINt JHN

This dance remix of the rap/r&b track ‘Roses’ has gained a fair deal of popularity this year.  The master is clean, powerful and loud.  The low-frequency range is clear and distinct, yet a dominant and driving force.

The high-frequency range is crisp and present, all while contributing to the stereo image of the track. 

The vocals sit on top of the instrumentation.

Lastly, the vocals sit comfortably in the mix, allowing the instrumentation to do its work yet still allows floating on top of the master. 

If you’re looking to master a pop-dance track than this is a great reference.

Lo-Fi Dance Master – ‘Archangel’ by Burial‘Archangel’ by Burial

The atmospheric and moody dance track ‘Archangel’ by Burial utilizes a darken tone and truncated frequency response to emphasize the emotional context of the music. 

The high-frequency range feels empty except for moments of ambient noise that add a psychoacoustic sense of stereo imaging.

The vocals bend in and out of focus evoking a sense of ambiguity while the kick and bass remain consistent and driving.

The vocals blend in and out of focus in this mix and master.

If your dance music aligns more with this type of stylized and artistic dance music, then ‘Archangel’ by Burial is a useful reference with which to compare your master.

How Streaming Changes Dance Music Masters

Streaming services alter the playback of dance music masters through a process referred to as Loudness Normalization.  Loudness Normalization changes the loudness of a master prior to it being played back over a streaming service, in turn affecting the dynamic range and perceived loudness of the master.

Streaming services use loudness normalization to affect the perceived loudness of music being streamed.

It should be noted though that not all streaming services do this.  Although YouTube, Spotify, Apple Music, Tidal, and others use loudness normalization, SoundCloud and Bandcamp seem to be some of the outliers that won’t conform to the new standard.

As for the services that do employ loudness normalization, the average loudness they normalize to is -14 LUFS.  This varies slightly from service to service, but -14 LUFS is a decent reference or target for online mastering.

Loudness normalization will vary from service to service.

Despite this new development, most dance masters have not changed in terms of how loud they’re mastered. 

How loud you want to master your dance track is entirely up to you – just know that loudness normalization will alter how it’s perceived when streamed from most streaming services.

What’s Better for Dance Music Mastering, Analog or Digital?

Although both forms of processing have their benefits when mastering, dance music is typically mastered using solely digital processing.  The reason being, digital processing allows for quick compressor release times and distortion-free processing, resulting in greater transient retention and a clearer, more transparent sound.

Digital mastering is typically sued for dance music, but both analog and digital processing has its advantages.

With this in mind, most pop dance tracks are created using digital processing.  Considering analog equipment typically results in a smoother, or less transient laden sound, digital mastering is often the go-to choice for most dance masters.

With that in mind, analog mastering does still have a place in dance music mastering.  Although the processing used cannot react to signal changes as quickly as digital, most analog equipment still works quickly enough to preserve transient detail.

Additionally, analog processing imparts subtle harmonic generation and minute changes in width and depth.  These changes are sonically pleasing regardless of the genre being mastered.

Analog equipment affects the signal in a complex and sonically pleasing way.

Lastly, analog mastering is better suited for lo-fi dance tracks than digital.  The reason being, analog is better suited for creating a more sonically complex and somewhat colored sound.

With that said, if you’re looking to create a dance track that has a little more warmth, a more complex frequency response, and has authentic electronic saturation, then analog mastering is the better choice for your dance track.

If you’d like to learn more about analog mastering and digital mastering, check out our blog post on the topic:

Analog vs. Digital Mastering

It delves into the differences between the two forms of processing and the possible benefits and drawbacks of each.  If you’re considering having your music mastered, or mastering music yourself, it’s full of helpful information.


Mastering dance music is an often rewarding process; considering dance music is all about impact and the ability to evoke uninhibited expression from listeners, hearing the finished version of a dance track has that same effect.

When a dance master is performed right, the music should create an uninhibited sense in the listener.

But this effect can only be reached with a proper master – one that makes the music upfront, clear, defined, and powerful.  That’s why it’s important to have your dance music mastered by someone who is prepared to do so or to master it properly yourself.

Some of the tips and techniques listed above can help you achieve this effect.

If you’d like to hear your dance mix mastered professionally, send it to us here:

Get a Free Mastered Sample of Your Mix

We’ll master it for you and send you a sample for you to review.

Have you ever mastered a dance track before?

Get a Free Mastered Sample of Your Song →

Sage Audio Mastering

Nashville, TN

How To Master EDM And Dance Music

Get your discounted Waves plugins courtesy of Raytown Productions!

Mastering EDM and dance music is one of the most rewarding things I can think of. When you master dance music just right, you can make a room full of people get up and dance like its the last night of their lives.  

Getting this right is really tricky, but I’m sharing with you my step by step EDM mastering process so you can master songs in your studio the right way.

We will cover is how to enhance the groove of any song and what to watch out for so you bass doesn’t sound weak!

As always, I’ll show you my complete plugin chain and go over exactly how to dial in each plugin for your song. 

Yes, 100% free.
See how your music could sound after being professionally mastered!

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► Improving transient response to make bass hit harder
► How to notch out annoying/ringing frequencies with an EQ
Sweetening the song with broad EQ moves
Adding air to a mix
► Adding artificial stereo width with spatial enhancers
► How to remove harsh top end
► How to set a compressor to add movement and glue the song together
Setting up a multi-band compressor for almost any song
► Using a delay timing chart to set attack and release of a compressor
► Adding saturation to gel track together
What to listen for when setting a limiter

To help you more with mixing and mastering, I made a downloadable eBook just for you with ALL of my FAVORITE FREE plugins!

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0:20: My Job as a mastering engineer
1:00: What could be fixed with this mix
1:36: First thing to do
1:54: JST Transify to improve transient response
3:39: There are no rules in music!
4:03: Fabfilter Pro Q2 to clean up low end, clarify vocals, and ease top end
6:50: Notching out resonant and ringing bands from the guitar
9:46: Using Waves PuigTec to add air to the mix
11:16: Fabfilter Pro C2 to add movement and dial in a groove
12:32: Secret to dial in the perfect groove
14:58: Understanding stereo image
15:27: Waves Center to make stereo image wider
16:35: Adding artificial width using stereo enhancement
17:09: Subtlety is everything with stereo enhancement
19:00: Waves Maxxbass to make bass sound huge on all devices
20:47: Using Fabfilter Pro MB to squeeze and gel the song together
21:17: Why multiband compressors are so helpful for mastering
23:05: Sweetening the mix with broad EQ moves
24:14: Secret weapon to removing harsh top end – Oeksound Soothe
26:24: Don’t go overboard using Soothe!
27:10: Gelling the mix before finalizing using Waves Kramer Tape
28:55: Visiting Sonnox at NAMM
29:55: Dialing in Sonnox Inflator to add transparent volume
30:24: Limiting with Fabfilter Pro L to bring track up to volume
31:46: Dialing in the limiter
32:20: Problem with making songs too loud
33:16: Make sure to reference to original track at SAME volume
33:40: Complete mastering summary


Learn how to professionally master your EDM and Dance music songs with this step-by-step video tutorial. 

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🔗 JST – Transify:
🔗 FabFilter – Pro Q2 EQ:
🔗 Waves – PuigTec EQ:
🔗 FabFilter – Pro C2:
🔗 Waves – Center:
🔗 Waves – S1 Shuffler:
🔗 Waves – MaxxBass:
🔗 Waves – Linear Multiband Compressor:
🔗 Oeksound – Soothe:
🔗 Waves – Kramer Tape:
🔗 Sonnox – Inflator:
🔗 FabFilter – Pro L Limiter:

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How to write electronic dance music - consistently and with examples - Music on DTF

What is the difference between snare and hi-hat and what does music consist of: a lecture by Andries Gandrabur, sound designer and composer "Mor (Utopia)".


Composer, music producer, author of soundtracks for "Mor (Utopia)" and other Ice-Pick Lodge games, as well as the founder of the DOS music school Andriesh Gandrabur, opened an educational stage, which was organized by the service team in Gorky Park at Plus Dacha for the promotion of BandLink and Yandex Music artists.

In July, Plus Dacha will also host a lecture on how to find yourself in the music business, and in August, IOWA

will give a lecture on negative emotions

In his speech, Gandrabur talked about the basic tools that need to be mastered in order to create electronic music, the smallest sound components and basic techniques.

The editors of Yandex Music have outlined the composer's lecture, but we are publishing it - with examples and all the explanations.

Drums (drums)

It's not a secret that the birth of musical art began precisely with the rhythm section. Primitive people, of course, did not have a drum kit or advanced sequencers (DAW), but with their hands and feet they created the first rhythmic patterns that are still used in music production today, just remember “We Will Rock You” by the legendary band Queen.

Key percussion elements in modern music production are Kick , Snare and Hat . This is enough to create the necessary dance groove and encourage the body to move. The fact is that these elements fill the main frequency ranges - low, middle and high.

Kick is a bass drum or bass drum in a classic drum kit. This heavy low-frequency knock is difficult to confuse with anything, besides, it is responsible for the simplest and most common technique in dance music - “Four on the floor” or “straight kick”.

This beat is strict and consistent - the kick kicks back on every beat, allowing listeners to easily follow the rhythm and shake their heads. When played with lips, you get something like “tut-tut-tut-tut”. But this is just one of the simplest tricks, because the groove can also be achieved with unexpected broken rhythms, shifting accents from strong beats to weak beats, thus creating a breakbeat.

Snare is the snare drum kit and the loudest instrument in the rhythm section. It is especially important to pay attention to the choice of a suitable snare, because it will greatly affect the musical style of the future track.

This element carries the most information, as it fills the middle and upper frequencies. The human voice is located at the same frequencies, so our ear will very clearly and accurately read this sound. It is comparable to hand clap, so clap (clap) is often used instead of snare.

Placing a snare or clap in a rhythm pattern is very easy. Under a straight kick, it will fall on the second and fourth beats of the bar - “kick-snare-kick-snare”. Such a universal pattern is already enough to achieve a sense of drive in any tempo and various musical styles.

Hi-Hat are cymbals with stand in drum set. They are open (Open) and closed (Closed), depending on this, making a lingering sound “shhh” or a short “ts ts ts”.

Hats greatly affect the speed and dynamics of a rhythm section - the more often they are played in a pattern, the faster the track seems to be. Often they are used to separate verses and choruses. And the arrangement of hats opens up a lot of room for experimentation and various combinations.

It is worth noting that the competent selection of drum samples is 50% of the success of the rhythm section. If you take kick from rock music, snare from Future Bass and hi-hat from trap, the combination will turn out to be unsuccessful, to put it mildly, although there are examples of interesting solutions.

Beginning musicians should pay attention to sample packs (Sample Pack) or Drum Kit with tags by genre. For example, in BandLab they are already sewn in and, as a rule, contain several variants of each drum element and, most likely, will be combined with each other.

By the way, it is not necessary to register drum tracks separately, because in addition to sample packs, there are also loops (Loop) - pre-prepared balanced template solutions for sound producers and musicians. It is enough to choose a drum loop to your taste, throw it on the track, loop it and you can move on.

Percussion (percussion)

Once the base is ready, it doesn't hurt to add variety. This is where percussion instruments come to the rescue. There are a lot of them and they are all different - tambourine, tambourine, maracas, cowbell, bells, shakers, congos, bongos, triangle, rattle, this list is endless.

Plus, with a little ingenuity, any everyday sound can be turned into a percussion instrument, whether it's a door slamming or a frying pan hitting it.

In electronic music, percussion instruments give a certain edge, movement and a certain direction. Producers often use their pre-made loops, such as shakers, to develop momentum in the chorus. Writing your own pattern is already more difficult, but more interesting, because sometimes you can achieve unexpected results.

Piano Roll is used to write percussion, where you can adjust not only the arrangement of elements, but also the duration of their sound, pitch and volume, panorama (left-right-center) and so on. Good percussion is made up of little things and does not stand out much against the background of the leading percussion instruments, creating an auxiliary background for them.

Bass (bass)

Bass is another element of the rhythm section. He only plays the root notes (lower notes of the chords), thus creating the "foundation" of the harmony. Bass and kick drum take over the entire lower frequency range and work in tandem.

In some electronic genres, such as Dubstep, the bass is used as a full-fledged musical instrument and plays all the melodic layers of the track. But this will require many hours of practice and synthesis skills.

If the melody is already present in the track, then you should select the bass notes according to its tonality, prescribing them through the Piano Roll. If there is no melody, then you should decide on the key yourself and arrange the notes within it. The possibilities of fine work in the piano roll will allow you to achieve a clear interaction of the bass with the kick, which is important for achieving a groove.

When you have bass and drums, that's basically it - the music starts. You can safely say that this is real dance music. It cannot exist without these elements. If you remove any of them, it will already be strange. Bass is the bridge between drums, rhythm and harmony

Andries Gandrabur

Pad (pad)

The rhythmic foundation is ready, and the foundation of harmony is laid in the bass line, but it's still not clear what mood the track will sound in. Pads, a kind of musical part that can be played both on a synthesizer and on traditional “live” instruments, will help bring clarity.

It's like a lining of extended chords and timbres, which is responsible for the harmonic structure, fills the space of the composition and creates additional depth and volume. In the case of pads, you should no longer rely on ready-made loops - it is unlikely that you will be able to find something suitable.

With the skills of synthesis (the process of generating sound presented as a discrete signal), you can wind up your own unique pad, but for starters, it's better to use ready-made presets in VST synthesizers.

Piano Roll allows you to set chords with one click of the mouse: thus, moving along the root notes of the bass, a chord progression is written.

By the way, for more atmosphere, the pads can also be leveled. Layering means that the same chords are layered on top of each other, but different instruments are used to create a rich sound. You can level just about anything, including drums, but don't put multiple layers of bass on it.

Arpeggio (arpeggio)

Arpeggio - traversing harmony notes alternately from top to bottom or bottom to top. This is the easiest way to apply a melodic ornament or pattern to the finished composition skeleton.

It is enough to open the arpeggiator (often built into the synthesizer), select the appropriate instrument and hold down one note or chord, then the arpeggiator will complete the rest of the work for you and play the next harmony notes or chord strumming.

Pulse Chords

Pulsating chords are common elements in dance genres that pulsate with drums, giving more movement to a track and helping to achieve a groove. Of the instruments here, keyboards, guitars, synthesizers are most suitable - you can try different options.

Sequencers let you record a chord pattern and then change the instrument that will play that pattern. This way you will hear which of the instruments will be out of place.

Vocals (vocals)

Dance music doesn't always need a vocal part, but a couple of lines that get stuck in your head can greatly increase a track's chances of success.

Any modern sequencer has the functionality to record voice directly into the mix without delay, but this will require additional equipment - an external sound card and a microphone. Fortunately, ready-made solutions for vocals are also available in the form of vocal sample packs.

Often the texts in such recordings are neutral in meaning, but well and qualitatively executed. And with resourcefulness, even the most inconspicuous line can be sampled and modified into something interesting. Only beginners, getting carried away by the process, often forget that the key of the vocal should match the key of the track.


It is very important to take care of the competent structure of the composition. There are many tools, but it is not necessary to use everything at once. The track should have a beginning, an end and something in the middle - a kind of plot along which the listener will move.

Start small, like bass and drums, and then add a new element every 4-8 bars. 4 bars is the square thinking of dance music, understandable to both the producer and the listener in the subcortex. You can diversify the structure with a breakdown, which will give the necessary suspense before the drop.

Drop is the brightest and most powerful part of the track. It is she who sticks in the head of the listeners and is responsible for the hit, so it is so important to work out and arrange a competent eyeliner to this place.


Every track needs at least a minimal mix. The first thing to take care of is the volume balance of the instruments in the mix. It almost never happens that all the elements sound balanced right off the bat. Sometimes, with a successful balance of volumes, further mixing may no longer be necessary or will be minimized. For information, the following series of treatments are most often used:

  • Equalization Cuts certain frequency ranges to avoid conflicts with other instruments. For example, if the pad has a lot of low end, it will not affect the sound of the bass, so you should cut the low frequencies a little. And pleasant frequencies, on the contrary, can be distinguished and raised;
  • Compression is a processing process that aims to reduce the dynamic range of a signal (the difference between the quietest and loudest sounds), and the compressor will also help to glue several layers of instruments on the group channel;
  • Saturation/Distortion - saturate the original sound with new harmonics, making it richer, warmer, more unique;
  • Reverberation/Delay - Spatial audio processing that repeats the original signal one or more times. Applies the effects of echo or reflection of sound from various surfaces (room).

All this is optional and is used as needed, but to avoid frequency conflicts it is better to use equalization always and on all instruments.

Mastering/Rendering (mastering/rendering)

Before rendering a track (converting it to mp3/wav format), it should be at least minimally mastered. Without mastering, the volume of the track will be noticeably inferior to all the others, and the composition itself will seem of poor quality.

Most sequencers have mastering plug-ins already built in and come with ready-made presets, so for beginners it will be enough just to find the right one. Some of them can wrap the mix into a more lo-fi shell, others can increase the punch of the low frequencies, saturate the upper ones. You can also increase the volume with a compressor or a maximizer, but you should not increase the volume with the usual Volume slider in decibels. This is a common rookie mistake that can kill the entire mix.

The knowledge of these elements, the ability to combine them with each other is the basis of musical production. It is experiments with different combinations and variants of sounds that will help novice musicians create new sounds. Knowledge of technical techniques and sequencers (DAW) will help this even more. Detailed instructions with hot keys and tools can be viewed on the lecture recording after free registration on the BandLink website in the "Courses" section.

The subsite is being developed with the support of Yandex Music

12 Life hacks, to quickly learn how to dance from Mamita Dance


Author: Pavel Collect
Psychologist, Teacher of Salsa and Tango


Author: Pavel Pavel
Psychologist and Tango 9000

At the start, you always want to get a quick result. When it doesn't happen, the hypothesis arises that everything takes time. After a conditionally acceptable time, humility comes to mastering pair dances, which, perhaps, is not given, and I will just do what I learned somehow.

This is the most common story of those who believe that the mere act of attending a pair dance class is enough to learn how to dance.
Absolutely not. If you want to really dance well, you have to make an effort outside of the dance class. A good teacher will definitely be needed, but the initiative should be on your side.

1. Listen to music

The most common and accessible advice that is given already in the first lessons. And it definitely works. Music creates a certain atmosphere of the dance and intuitively you want to move to it. It doesn't matter where you listen to music - in the car, on headphones while walking or doing household chores.

An addition that will help you dance better is your active participation in the music. Sing along, dance or simply beat musical accents with any free parts of the body. In the subway, for example, it is enough to tap out bright moments with your fingers, in the car to sing along with sounds, and at home you can jump for pleasure.

2. Watch videos of good dancers

It's complicated, but also obvious. It’s more difficult, because without recommendations from more experienced dancers, unfortunately, it’s not so easy to find a good quality video on the net (I mean not the resolution quality, but the content itself).

Meaningful video viewing is about building an understanding of HOW dancers make a particular impression on a partner or viewer. Technology is at the heart of everything. Understanding how the pros do it is a big step forward.

It is important to distinguish a show from a disco dance, a staged performance from an improvisation, a stylized dance from an authentic one, etc. Ask for recommendations and dance teachers will always throw off a couple of videos of worthy landmarks.

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3. Dance in salsatecas/milongas/discotheques

A very delicate moment when it is worth coming to the first party. From a technical point of view, most students in 1-3 months have a sufficient set of figures and techniques to come and dance calmly. Psychologically, the same moment can be stretched out for an indefinite time. After all, it is imperative to “not lose face”, “learn more figures” and be sure what to do in case “there is an unfamiliar movement”.

In fact, the partygoers don't really care (except for a small layer of non-professional teachers who want to help inexperienced dancers by treating them as customers in the future). It is important to come and try dancing after a month of classes. You can only with friends or guys from your group. This will be enough to feel the adrenaline and inspiration from the dance.

4. Dance with partners or partners not of your level

The conventional wisdom that you need to practice in groups of your level does not stand up to the test of experience. Perhaps now your eyes widened in surprise, and you want to meaningfully read the phrase again. Yes, you saw everything correctly: when you dance with a partner of your level, you don’t grow anywhere.

It's important to understand that not only does it work one way and you have to dance with cooler dancers, but it works even more effectively the other way. It is no coincidence that teaching pair dances dramatically raises the level of the teacher himself. You have an endless stream of very beginner dancers.

How it works. A more experienced partner needs to be "stretched". It's easy and obvious. With beginners, you need to take more initiative on yourself, see the general pattern of the dance more widely, turn on and insure more, try to be an example and be more careful. The quality of interaction begins to grow significantly. And wonderful partners too.

Dancing with partners of your level doesn't make you grow. Dance with both beginners and more advanced dancers

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5. Learn to dance for a partner and for a partner

Turks and Argentines are one of the best partners in the world. In Russia, partners are highly valued. Why? The answer is simple. In Argentina and Turkey, it is not questionable for men to ask another man to lead in one piece or another and give feedback on the quality of the lead. For them, it will be a great shame to hear moralizing from a partner, or even more so to be known in the community as an insecure partner.

In Russia, due to the constant, often far-fetched, opinion that there are more women in pair dances, partners calmly get up and study their partner's part. Such partners then grow into very cool dancers and teachers. In no case do this at parties, only in class. Here we are talking only about the learning strategy. At parties, be yourself.

6. Do not memorize the links

Always try to look deeper and understand the through principle and idea of ​​movement. Understanding what and how is done will make it possible to independently generate any sequences and chips.

Human memory is limited and there will always be a moment when something will escape and your repertoire will be limited by the size of RAM.

In Argentine tango, for example, there are seven levels of movement construction that, when mastered, will allow you to make millions of combinations. And how many dance sequences can you really remember? In rueda, more than 150 figures dance in a rare circle. It's hard to keep more in mind.

7. Develop your body

Many years of experience in teaching couple dance shows that as soon as everyone pairs up in a class, any progress in individual style ends. But it is the individual style that distinguishes everyone at the disco: partners change, and style is always with you.

The body as the main instrument of dance must be very plastic, responsive and emotional. Surprisingly, not all pair dance schools have a general physical warm-up. It is vital to tune the body and understand how it works.

You can always train extra and concentrate more on the basic steps, as their true value is as body work. The sequence of steps is, in fact, the simplest thing that can be in pair dancing. The quality of individual performance determines the craftsmanship.

8. Try on the images of inspiring dancers

A psychological life hack for those who have already mastered the steps, but still feel that there is not enough brightness and drive. Most are terribly afraid of being someone else's "clone". Here the action is the same as under the influence of hypnosis - the more you resist, the more you plunge into an altered state of consciousness.

With a high degree of probability, you are already dancing like someone else's "clone". A meaningful fitting of someone else's image is that you mentally take the image of the one who inspires you (inspiration is critical in this case) and "put on" yourself. Then you start dancing and trying to feel in general how it is to be able, for example, to be the best partner or the sexiest partner in a disco. This is much more difficult than it seems. But it works extremely efficiently.

9. Dance to unformatted music

Habitual rhythms keep you in tight limits. Tango salon or speedy timba leave little room for experimentation and fantasy. Pattern dancing is always noticeable and is reserved for beginners.

The truly new is born outside of the usual. Look for places to experiment. If there is no place, organize self-training. The main thing is not to get carried away, because music determines the style. We bring something new to pair dances, rather than trying to change them.

Search, improvise, do not be afraid to go beyond, develop in different directions, be inspired by music atypical for the style

10. Try your hand at basic dance directions

dances exist according to their own non-choreographic laws.

This is the deepest delusion, which has turned into a ceiling for the qualitative development of partner dances. After all, all professional dancers, for example, in salsa or bachata, build their ideas on the basic choreographic principles.

Do not think that choreography is only applicable on stage. Any meaningful movement of the body can be choreographic. In general, try classical or modern choreography. Basically, hip-hop can work too.

11. Look for battle sensations

Pair dances return us to an active position of manifestation of our body. As in the days of our ancient ancestors, we impress the members of the opposite sex by how dexterous, hardy, sexy, etc. we are. Modern laws of the jungle in the entourage of big cities.

If you look around the dance floor, it becomes clear that the majority are clearly herbivores (not in the sense of vegetarians, but in relation to those around them). I am sure that predators are always more interesting in terms of the attractiveness of the image - try to find a counterbalance among herbivores, for example, a cat woman or a lion man.

The conversation is about an internal position, not about aggressiveness. Lability and lack of control are inherent in adolescents, and not in adult self-sufficient people.

Accordingly, even a training or friendly battle gives, on the one hand, practical skills - to make a bright sequence of movements, bring an idea to a climax, show a spectacular feature, on the other hand, develops the psychological basis of the dance - self-confidence, resistance to extraneous attention, self-control and self-control in complex elements.

12. Communicate with professionals

The environment shapes the internal position. Basically, real passionaries of the dance community are ready to openly talk, discuss and support the development of dance in every possible way. Universal principles and the ideas they articulate have a much longer and more practical perspective than meets the eye.

Accept that, for example, behind the words "listen to your partner" is not only a beautiful metaphor, but also a practical skill to literally listen to your partner. At the same time, always treat every thought, even the most respected teacher, as a private opinion.

Your skill will lie in finding the scope of the idea even in conflicting opinions. Most often, the contradiction is speculative and the truth lies in the angle of perception or situationality.

Your dancing growth will stop sooner or later. This can happen at the level of three basic steps or years of experience in teaching and show performances.

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