I am only recommending resources I actually read/buy/use and like enough to regularly tell friends about. Some of the links below may be affiliate links. This means that clicking them could potentially earn me a small commission for referring you. This commission is at no extra cost to you and is a free and easy way to thank me for the recommendation. I would never recommend something I haven’t tried or wouldn’t buy again.
TAKING CARE OF BUSINESS
Backup & cross-device sync
Dropbox – Cross-device sync + backup recent files for quick access.
BackBlaze – Online backup of all my system files, including my backup drive. If my drive fails, they’ll send me a drive with all my files intact. Totally worth it for less than $10/mo.
I also use TimeMachine on Mac. For more info about how to set up your multi-layer backup system, read: Wrap your head around backups – musician edition.
accounting & taxes
Canva – Create artwork.
Bandzoogle – Website creation tailored to music artists. I use it for 23rdhr.com.
Mailchimp – Email marketing tool with a reasonably powerful free tier.
bit.ly – Link shortening & tracking.
odesli.co – Link to song/album on all available streaming platforms/online stores
“Shortcuts to Great Song Lyrics (self-paced)” by Robin Frederick.
Robin’s course is hands-down the best lyric course. In addition to being a true music industry veteran, she’s articulate, to the point, practical, analytical, up-to-date, and passionate about helping you develop your lyrical artistry. For only $95, you even get access to her office hours where you can get your song reviewed. It’s the biggest bang for your buck you’ll ever get.
PRODUCTION & MIXING
SoundGym.co – Ear training game. Think of it as DuoLingo for mixers.
FREE PRACTICE STEMS:
Mixing Secrets Multitrack Library from Mike Senior/ Cambridge Music & Technology.
Puremix.net – Watch how the top engineers and producers do their thing. You also get to download some of the stems and remix them for a contest! Winners get cool plugins. Some free material available
Mixing with the Masters – Seminars, tutorials and interviews with the industry greats.
Pensado’s Place – All things audio + interviews with industry greats.
Musician on a Mission – Concise and well-produced short tutorials on mixing, mostly in Logic.
Make Pop Music – Mostly indie/pop production.
Andrew Huang – Production in various genres.
Yuri Wong – Recreating songs/scores using only stock Logic sounds.
Produce Like a Pro – Production, gear, mixing, interviews & more
Produce Like a Boss – Production for the total beginner.
Aubrey Whitfield – Some mix/production tutorials, but also has her music.
Logic Pro Help – Free tutorials on how to use Logic Pro X. They also have paid courses.
“Home Studio University” by Musician on a Mission
I learned a good chunk of the mixing foundations by going through this course and receiving monthly feedback on my mixes. Material is concise, well organized and well produced. There’s also a private FB group with a very supportive community. When I joined I was one of a few women. Now there’s quite a few more and that’s super cool. Free tutorials on their YouTube channel below.
BOOKS | READING LIST
“Mixing Secrets” by Mike Senior
Excellent book explaining the fundamentals one needs to know to start mixing.
“Shortcuts to Songwriting for Film & TV” by Robin Frederick
This is by far my favorite because it is most relevant to my goal, concisely written, up-to-date, and simply full of great techniques. I have the this one the most for my exercises. Robin recently updated the book and split it into 3 volumes, Level 1, Level 2 and Level 3. I have a slightly older edition that’s just one book.
“Song Starters – 365 Lyric, Melody & Chord Ideas” by Robin Frederick
Short prompts to jumpstart your songwriting session. Great to have on an uninspired day.
“Writing Better Lyrics” by Pat Pattison
An industry classic. A bit more on the academic side, and not as nuanced when it comes to the particular purpose of the song. It’s about the craft in a vacuum, unburdened by industry needs or trends. In-depth exercises with various songwriting tools and techniques. Very meta.
“Songwriting Without Boundaries” by Pat Pattison
In-depth exploration of metaphors, object writing, meter and rhyme. Definitely worth going through. Again, very meta.
“The Plain & Simple Guide to Music Publishing” by Randall D. Vixen
“How to Make It in the New Music Business” by Ari Herstand
“Break the Business” by Ryan Kairalla
“Crowdstart: The Ultimate Guide to a Powerful & Profitable Crowdfunding Campaign” by Ariel Hyatt
OTHER MUSIC-RELATED BOOKS I LOVED
Water & Music by Cherie Hu – Trends in music & technology.
Pop of Colour by Clarence Charron – Branding & general business tips for musicians.
Smart Musician Guide by me – Tips for taking care of business as a musician.
More coming soon… If you have a blog that would be useful to add here, please contact me.