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Mix Studio: Allow Me to Introduce Myself

New Weekly Blog on Recording and Production, With Mike Levine

Welcome to the Mix Studio blog. I’m Mike Levine, the new Technical Editor – Studio for Mix. When Mix editor Tom Kenny explained that an essential part of my job would be to blog on a weekly basis as a way to communicate technology information and commentary, it came as a bit of a surprise. Sure, I’ve written features, interviews, reviews, editorials, press releases and social-media posts, but blogging isn’t something I’ve had a lot of experience with. But hey, there’s nothing like jumping into the deep water to accelerate the learning process.

In reality, it’s not all that complicated. Each week in this space, I’ll share thoughts and ideas about all things studio-related. One week might be about production techniques or archiving standards, or it could be immersive audio or acoustic treatments. That’s the beauty of blogging; it’s open-ended, and it depends on what’s on the mind of the writer at a given time. Not only will this column be wide-ranging, there will probably be an occasional detour into non-related subjects, but I’ll always find a way to bring it back around to the studio.

I’ve been involved in music-technology journalism, both as a writer and editor, since 1998. Back in those early days, I would look out the window of my office and sometimes see a stegosaurus walking around or the odd pterodactyl. You think I’m kidding? There was also this new thing called the Internet, but it never really amounted to anything…

Seriously, I’ve had a double-track career, one part as a journalist and the other as a musician, composer and producer. I’ve had a home studio since the days of four-track cassette recorders, and I remember back when MIDI was still novel, the Akai S950 was cutting-edge hardware, and the floppy disk was the primary vehicle for data storage.

I’ve composed tracks for many commercials and TV shows, have been in touring bands, played in a Broadway pit orchestra, and now do a lot of mixing and producing (as well as live performing). As a result, I approach my music journalism from the point of view of a participant. And even after so many years of writing about gear, I still get excited by cool new technology and products.

DAW software, for example, is an area of great interest. Without question, Pro Tools is the workstation of choice in the professional audio world and it will surely get plenty of coverage in this space, but so will other platforms. When something exciting or newsworthy is happening with Logic or Reaper or Studio One or Live or DP or Cubase or any of the other workstation applications out there, I will write about it.

It’s also crucial that this column not be a one-way street. I’d like it to become more of a dialog. To that end, feel free to communicate your ideas, comments, suggestions concerns, and even tips on upcoming products or emerging technologies. My email is [email protected].

Writing this blog is only part of my gig with Mix. I’m also going to be heavily involved in gear coverage, including doing online mini-reviews and spotlighting a notable new product each week. The latter could be software or hardware—anything that I find to be of particular interest or note.

Thanks for reading my debut column, and I look forward to getting into the nitty-gritty of music technology with you, starting next week.