VLOG #9: Open Ears, Open Mind, Health & Fitness

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VLOG #9: Open Ears, Open Mind, Health & Fitness

Hey guys, welcome to The Pro Audio Files.

It’s the Friday show.

We’re going to be talking with the owner/operator
of All About Kick Boxing, and I’m going to

be signing off for the last time on this Vlog,
at least for this particular run, but before

we get into all of that, I want to give you
guys a quick little tip.

Alright guys, here is the most important tip
I will ever give you.

The most important thing when mixing is to
keep your ears open, and the second most important

thing is to keep your mind open, and what
I mean by that, well, I’m going to give you

some actual tangible examples of doing just

So this song that I’m about to play, it’s
called Reality.

It was produced by Chris Wallace for Continuum

He’s a really talented dude.

Very complex mix.

This is not the actual mix.

This is me just sort of getting my fingers
into the track, because we’re going to do

the actual mix at Paramount Studios, Chris
is going to come down, we’re going to put

together there, but I want to have a really
good idea, a really good game plan of what

I’m going to do going in.

So anyway, I’m going to play this verse section,
and then I’m going to jump over to the breakdown

real quick.


And I’m going to jump over to the break.

[mix, break]

Now I’m going to point out something really

I’m going to go back to the verse here, and
I’m going to bypass this trim plugin.

[mix, trim bypassed]

Now I’m going to bring it back in.

[mix, trim enabled]

Really focus on the kick.

You hear how when I bring the trim plugin
back in, suddenly that kick becomes a lot


It’s because I’m flipping the phase on the

As it turns out, the kick is out of phase
with the other kicks in the verse sections,

but it’s in phase with the other kicks in
the breakdowns and the chorus sections.

That’s keeping open ears.

So no amount of techniques in the world are
going to fix a messed up kick drum that’s

out of phase with the other kicks it’s layered

But having open ears means I heard that something
was wrong with the kick, went in, investigated

and found yup, in the verse, it’s out of phase,
but on the breakdown and chorus, it’s in phase.

Now I want to show you something else here.

This sound right here…


To me, that’s sort of the driving sound of
this breakdown.


There’s nothing in that break section that
gives that — this mix like, that energy

and aggression that I feel like it needs to
kind of come at the listener’s face.

So keeping an open mind.

Well, what did I decide to do?

I tried a few things.

I know that I want to pull up that texture
in the upper mid-range, so I’m going to use

the Manny Marroquin tone shaper here.

Here’s before.

[mix, before tone shaper]


[mix, after tone shaper]


Pretty obvious there.



Now, that’s a pretty big boost, and I don’t
think that it sounds crazy, to be honest with

you, I think that sounds like exactly what
it needs.

But let me show you what I tried doing before

This here is a high shelf, and it’s 26 decibels

I have it bypassed right now, but watch what
happens when I bring it in and out.

[mix, EQ enabled and bypassed]

Okay, without it.

With it.

To me, that’s not that crazy.

I think that actually sounds about right.

Maybe a touch too much, like maybe four or
five dB, but I mean, we’re still talking about

a 20 dB boost to the high end.


Because that’s what worked, and I’m keeping
an open mind.

So remember, open ears, open mind.

Guys, Matt here, and I’m at All About Kickboxing
right now with Jonathan.

He is the owner, operator, head trainer here,
and I’m going to ask him a couple of questions

about health and fitness, because I can’t
think of too many better people I could interview

for this.

Alright, so my first question is, let’s talk
about boxing as a form of exercise.

What are some of the benefits?

Obviously, you guys have been watching, so
you know I’m super into boxing, but what are

some of the benefits of kickboxing specifically?

As a form of working out.

Jonathan: Probably the best thing about boxing
or kickboxing is it’s going to get your heart

rate up.

It’s a lot of cardio, it’s very intensive,
it’s not like — when you’re running, alright?

You’re running.

It’s a constant pace, unless you’re fluctuating
that pace a lot.

When you’re boxing and kickboxing, that pace
is constantly fluctuating.

You can go from zero to 100 in two seconds.

Matt: One of the things that I noticed pretty
quickly after maybe about the first month,

when I’m at my desk, I’m sitting, and I hunch.

Some of that has been improved because I got
glasses, but some of that has been significantly

improved because my posture is getting better,
and so I’m not getting neck cramps the way

that I used to.

I think that’s because of all of the core
training and probably some of the shoulder

training as well.

Jonathan: Shoulder training, all of the planks
we do to strengthen that core, any kind of

training where you’re — you know, you’re
working shoulders, you’re working your core,

all of that stuff is going to help with your

Some of the exercise we do in here, obviously,
when we do kickboxing bootcamp, which is like

a mixture of body weight exercises and combinations
actually helps with that.

Matt: Okay, so my next question for you is
let’s take a hypothetical.

Imagine, if you will, somebody who is about
70 pounds overweight, and hasn’t really worked

out in the right way in about 10 years.

They need to get started.

I can’t think of anyone, but… [laughs] and
they need to get started down the path to

a better lifestyle.

What’s the first three steps that somebody
takes to go there?

Jonathan: First step is work out.

Doesn’t have to be anything crazy, doesn’t
have to be anything intensive, just work out.

Find something you can do that helps you do
it every single day.


That you can keep that’s easy.


If you have to drive two hours to go to a
gym, that’s not realistic.


Find something that works for you.

And for me, boxing and kickboxing, it’s — it
always kept me going.

I always find it therapeutic to hit something,
and it’s just —

Matt: Nobody in the music business has ever
wanted to hit someone.

That’s never happened.


Jonathan: I know where your aggression comes

Matt: No more revisions!

What about diet?

Jonathan: Diet.

Start with small changes.

Obviously, cut out the soda.

If you have the motivation, you can go crazy.

If you do not have the motivation, take small
changes, little bites.

If in the morning, you go to Starbucks and
you get a mocha frappuccino, you have to have

it, you’re always going out there, instead
of going out and stop doing that, just go

out there and like, take it without the whipped


Then you keep going, keep going, and maybe
in two weeks, alright?

Take something that maybe has less low sweetener.

Like a low sweetener.

And progressively keep doing the same thing,
and just replace it with now something else

which is even healthier, like a tea.

You’re still maintaining that habit, but now
you’re doing better choices, and eventually,

maybe you’ll be able to quit, and you won’t
care about it so much.

So small progressive changes is probably the

Matt: On the Wednesday show, I mentioned something
and I want to get your opinion on it.

In your experience, do we need any kind of
additive sugar in our diets at all?

Like, is there any point in which granulated
sugar is good for us?

Jonathan: There is absolutely no point in

Most sugar is — it’s like crack.

Your body can use sugar — it’s the one thing
your body can use that’s the quickest.

It’ll quickly feed everything in your body.

Matt: So it’s like, literally, if you’re not
about to jump up and go running that second,

that just stores in your fat.

Jonathan: Yeah.

It’s just going to go straight as fat.

Matt: I’ve tried to go cold turkey on sugar,
and it worked for about two weeks, and I just

found that…

Jonathan: You went into crazy cravings.

Matt: No, actually, I got over that in about
three days.

I never ate candy bars, I never drank soda,
my sugar was already kind of lower, but when

I added it up, I realized I was still getting
like, 35-40 grams of sugar a day, without

eating candy or soda, because there’s sugar
in literally everything.

So now, my threshold is 20 grams.

As long as I’m not going over 20 grams, I
feel like I’m doing the job right, and I’m

still — you know, like you said, looking
at a lifestyle thing where I’m not aiming

to go cold turkey on additive sugar overnight.

This is something that I want to do over the
course of a year or so, where I can be under

10 grams.

You know?

That kind of a thing.

Okay, so my last question is let’s say that
I convince a couple of people to come out

here, which I am going to do.

You offer more than just — first of all,
the boxing is not straight up people fighting

each other, right?

Jonathan: No, most of our classes are cardio

You are learning, you are learning the moves,
you’re learning how to do it properly, you’re

learning very simple sparring techniques,
most of the classes on it are on the bag where

you actually — there’s no — you don’t
have a fear of getting hit.

We do kind of offer the option of doing sparring,
and possibly getting some blood going on on

your nose, and I try to incorporate as much
as we can, so I don’t want to do just kickboxing

and boxing, because you also do need weights,
so we do have weights upstairs, and we do

some weight training classes, and we also
have yoga and spin.

Matt: Yeah.

Jonathan: Because it’s really all about, you
know, you need a place where you can have

all of that, and have the sense of community
of people who want to work out and actually

stay in shape.

Because I use the graphics.

I think you know that, I used to do the graphics,
so it’s the same thing.

When you’re on the computer, you’re working
all day, you’ve got deadlines, you’ve got

horrible clients coming at you asking for
horrible changes.

I was doing the graphic design, and it was
getting me fat, and so this is what actually

kept me in shape.

So that’s what I — that’s what this gym
is about.

It’s about just making sure people have a
place where they can come in, work out, and

try to stay fit, and make it fun.

Matt: Cool.

So I’m going to wrap this up with this.

In general, if you’re in the music business,
as I’ve been discussing all week, it is absolutely,

exceptionally important not to get into the
bad habits, or if you’re in the bad habits

to break them, and start breaking them as
a lifestyle choice.

Don’t look at doing them overnight, look at
doing them over the course of a year.

And if you happen to be in the North Hollywood/Burbank
area, I really encourage you guys to come

down to All About Kickboxing.

You can go to the website, it’s allaboutkickboxing.com.

I’m here all of the time.

I’m here like, five days of the week.

Jonathan: He’s not even kidding.

Matt: No, not even kidding.

I do multiple classes sometimes if I can.

If you’re in this area, you’re in the music
business, come on down.

I’d love to meet you in person, I’d love to
go through a class with you, and really encourage

you guys to stay in shape and stay healthy.

Alright folks, so that’s going to put a cap
on season 1 of this vlog.

I’m going to have to put it to bed for a minute,
it’s just a very difficult format to keep

up with, since I’m kind of one man banding
this with Dan here, but I really need you

guys to hit that subscribe button, because
the whole point of this channel is to bring

you information that’s really important in
the world of music production, but do it in

a way that’s digestible, do it in a way that’s
actionable and do it in a way that’s fun,

and we’re going to keep experimenting and
trying different ways to get that really great

information to you.

So that subscribe button is really everything.

Alright guys, don’t forget, mixing with reverb
is in the description below, and I will catch

you next time.

VLOG #9: Open Ears, Open Mind, Health & Fitness

Thank you for all your VLOG support! New articles, tutorials and more coming soon. http://instagram.com/weisssound // http://theproaudiofiles.com // http://mixingwithreverb.com

About The Pro Audio Files

Tutorials on mixing, mastering and producing music in Pro Tools with plugins from Waves, FabFilter, SoundToys, Softube, Sonnox, PSP, Slate Digital and more. Learn how to mix using EQ, compression and effects like reverb, delay, saturation and distortion on vocals, drums, guitar, bass and more.

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