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MIXING / MORE THAN JUST PLAYING SOUNDS TOGETHER
GESTALT = “the whole is greater than the sum of its parts”. Eating individual cookie ingredients is not the same as eating a mixed and baked cookie. MIXING music creates a powerfully obvious gestalt because emotional expression can be strongly varied depending on how the individual parts are intentionally processed and combined.
Although “Mixing” usually refers to combining two or more sounds so that the result (and interaction) creates emotional expression beyond the original sounds, you can effectively mix only ONE track if you alter it in ways that make it more expressive. For example, you may EQ a vocal so it is more breath-y, place it into a large room, and automate the volume so the singer seems more sensitive.
Mixing involves manipulating audio tracks in order to create a sonic illusion. The illusion may be as simple as a band on a stage or as complicated as an elaborate landscape. If the illusion is not believable, the emotions expressed in the song will be ignored.