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2016 Mixing Contest

The contest is now closed.
We are judging the mixes and will let you know when we have a winner.

Prizes – 4 Winners Total

toontrack groove3 bdl

1st Place

  • Toontrack Superior Drummer + 1 SDX of choice ($478 Value)
  • Year pass to Groove3 ($150 Value)
  • All Boz Digital Labs Plugins for life (Priceless?)

2nd Place

  • Toontrack EZDrummer + 1 EZX of choice ($228 Value)
  • 30 day pass to Groove3 ($15 Value)
  • Any Boz Digital Labs plugin of choice ($149 Value)

3rd Place

  • Toontrack EZDrummer ($149 Value)
  • 30 day pass to Groove3 ($15 Value)
  • Any Boz Digital Labs plugin of choice ($149 Value)

Random Contestant

  • Toontrack EZDrummer ($149 Value)
  • 30 day pass to Groove3 ($15 Value)
  • Any Boz Digital Labs plugin of choice ($149 Value)

 The Song

The song was written and played by myself and Mark Richey (Red Line Tragedy). So I’m not the best guitar player in the world. Sue me (Just kidding, don’t sue me. I hate paperwork.). You get the DI tracks of all the guitars, with the neck and the bridge pickups tracked onto separate tracks (my favorite way to track guitars). You also get the DI bass track (bridge pickup only). Drums are samples, so you can either use the raw samples that I provided, or you can download the MIDI track and use whatever samples you want.

Everything is as raw as it can be. I really don’t want to sit through 2000 mixes that all sound the same. Do NOT use my version of the song as a reference. It’s just there to give you an idea of what the song sounds like. I want you to come up with your own take on the song. Plus, my guitars sound too fizzy anyway.

Song BPM: 170

Time Signature: 4/4

Standard guitar tuning

Mixes must be submitted by Sunday, September 4th at Midnight PST.

Download the Tracks

Drums Mirror 1  | Mirror 2 | Drums MIDI 
Vocals Mirror 1 | Mirror 2
Guitars Mirror 1 | Mirror 2

Free plugin to help with the stereo guitar tracks: Mac | Windows

Here’s a video that walks through how to use the plugin: https://youtu.be/ACIZ9Cx7l4c

Note: Yes, the files are called Drums2.zip, vocals2.zip and guitars2.zip. They do contain all the tracks. I just don’t want you to think you are missing anything because they are names XXX2.zip.

Your Job

Your job is simple: make this song sound as awesome as possible. Pretend that I’m the client and I want you to turn this song into magic. It’s up to you to decide how to do that. While this is a mixing contest, you are welcome to change up whatever you want if you think it makes the song better.

How to Enter

  1. Download the tracks
  2. Mix the tracks (obviously)
  3. PAY ATTENTION!! THIS IS IMPORTANT. Upload your song to some hosting service. You can use dropbox or soundcloud or whatever you want, just as long as we can listen to the song without having to create an account anywhere.
    Your mix must be streamable! Do not post your mix somewhere where the judges have to download the file in order to hear it. The judges are listening to a lot of mixes and adding extra steps makes it a lot harder.
  4. Go to this page and enter the URL to your song: http://www.bozdigitallabs.com/phpfunctions/submitsongform.php
    Note: You must be logged in to your Boz Digital Labs account to view that page. If you don’t have an account, you can make one for free.

Get Feedback on Your Mix

You are more than welcome to get feedback on your mix before entering. We have set up a facebook page for you guys to discuss the tracks, the song, get help and get feedback. You can find it here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/254263468285882/ (I keep it a closed group because I know some people don’t want the whole world hearing their unfinished mixes). Just ask to be added to the group and I’ll add you.

How You Will be Judged

You will be judged on whether or not the judges think your song sounds great. That’s all there is to it. Extra points will not go to people just because it’s different, but feel free to be creative. If there’s a sound in your head, do whatever it takes to get that sound.

Rules

I want to make this fun, so we have to have a few rules.

  1. One Entry Per Person. You can enter one song. You are free to post your mix for feedback on other forums or Facebook or whatever, but once you submit it, you have submitted it. No more changes.
  2. Submit your mix by September 4th. Any submissions entered after this date will be ignored. There doesn’t exist a single excuse in the world that will make us change our mind on this, so don’t procrastinate.
  3. No whining. This is supposed to be fun. Not everybody will agree with the winner. Just accept that fact now so we can all move on and have a good time.
  4. Give Feedback to Other Contestants. This isn’t really a rule, but just some advice. The whole point of this is so we can all get better. By giving feedback on other people’s mixes, not only will they learn, but so will you. Be nice about it. I shouldn’t have to say that.
  5. Have Fun. If you aren’t having fun, you are doing it wrong. The whole point of this contest is to learn and get better. Any emails I received telling me that I should die or my house should be burned down will be ignored and forwarded directly to your mom.

FAQ

Q: How much of the song can I change?

A: While we are not looking for a new song, you are welcome to make any changes to the order, instruments, vocals, whatever. It does need to be recognizably the same song in order to be considered a winner. If you want to have fun with it and replace the guitar with a banjo, be my guest. I can’t imagine that winning though, but if you can pull it off, more power to you.

Q: Will this contest be judged fairly?

A: Of course not. There’s no possible way to judge thousands of mixes and keep it completely objective. The point is to have fun and to learn. If your end product sounds awesome, we will notice.

Q: How many submissions to I get.

A: One submission.

Q: Can I get feedback on my mix before submitting?

A: Yes, you are welcome to get feedback from anyone you’d like before submitting your mix. Once you have submitted your mix, however, you can’t make changes to it. We have set up a facebook forum specifically designed to get mix feedback, so feel free to utilize it. You can also use any number of forums that already exist for getting mix feedback. There are plenty of them out there, and they are a great resource.

Q: Do I have to comment on other people’s mixes in order to qualify?

A: No, you don’t have to, but it’s highly encouraged. Again, the point of this contest is to learn and get better, and pointing out the good and bad parts of other people’s mixes is a good way for both you and them to learn.

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89 Comments
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TheBrince
5 years ago

so who won this contest?!!!!!!

For the Contest 2016
5 years ago

I think I speak for all when I say that the St. Anger mix is at a level of excellence all on its own. That man deserves the Nobel Prize for innovating and inspiring with his unparalleled mixing abilities (mostly within the 400-1000Hz range).

aregrongstad
5 years ago

Yeah, Bob Rocks !

zax
5 years ago

Just out of curiosity, how many mixes were submitted? Wasn’t there something like 2400 or so last year?
I’ve been listening to a lot of them on Soundcloud, and a lot of them sound great. Gotta be tough for the judges for sure.
Anyway, good luck to everyone, and thank you Boz for doing this again this year. It was fun!

JosephValo
5 years ago

This is my first competition and my first time doing a mix like this for someone else. It was a learning experience like no other and I had an amazing time doing the mix for the competition as well. Just like Boz Millar said, “If you aren’t having fun, then you are doing it wrong.” This was a great learning experience for me and the experience I gained by doing this will help me greatly in the future. Thanks for giving me and everyone else an opportunity to do something great, amazing and to either brush up on our skills and /or learn something new in the process.
Best wishes to everyone who participated in the contest and good luck to everyone.

Best,
Joseph Valo III

Mike Højgaard
5 years ago

Thanks for giving me the opportunity to participate – may the best mix win! And thanks for making great stuff! Yir!

Enjoy:
https://soundcloud.com/the-liberty-balance/boz-mixcontest2016-finalmix/s-9nUhC

Best,
Mike from Copenhagen, Denmark

hibernoid
5 years ago

I actually only came across this last night. Took me about 4 hours to mix it. Probably ain’t gonna win it. HAHA
Here is the link to my mix if anyone is interested 🙂

https://www.dropbox.com/s/0sguy7a9czshcwx/Low%20Down.mp3?dl=0

All the best guys! 🙂 and girls if there are any :p

kevin gobin
5 years ago
Ma Li
5 years ago

Hi,
Glad to have chance share my mix with you. This is link of mine:
https://soundcloud.com/ma-li-783718773/low-down

5 years ago

Hi,
I would like to congratulate all the participants, wishing you all the best!
This is the link to my mix:
https://soundcloud.com/omnipresent/low-down-jorgecostamix_boz-digital-labs-2016

Hope you’ll enjoy it.

skitch_84
5 years ago

I had been out of the country and away from my DAW for the past four weeks. I just got back yesterday and finally got a chance to mix this thing. What an awesome song! This has been a lot of fun. This is actually the first rock track I’ve ever mixed. I’m a video game music composer, so most of my music is orchestral or electronic in nature. This was a great challenge and I really enjoyed it. I want to submit my track right away, but I’m going to let it sit overnight in case I hear something new in the morning when my ears have had a chance to rest.

JStoneAudio
5 years ago

I am just seeing this contest so I’ll see what I can do in 4 days and cram it into my schedule 😉

Bassen72
5 years ago

Thank you for doing this contest. It’s really a awesome song, and many of my friends really loving it.
I just finished the mix, and I have a question?
Do you want me to submit with mp3 or wave File?
Kind Regards
Bassen72 (Bjørn Storsveen)

Roberto Riccardo
5 years ago

Do the song have to be only a mix or have to be mastered after the mix?

For the Contest 2016
5 years ago

I mastered mine, but I take the less is more stance on mastering. No compression or limiting whatsoever. Just EQ and sometimes a couple of other subtle tricks.

For the Contest 2016
5 years ago

Do we need to make it downloadable like last year or just stream it if we do it on Box or Soundcloud?

BDMCK
5 years ago

If I post to soundcloud do I need to tag it with anything?

larry1
5 years ago

I submitted the link to my mix, but nowhere did it ask for my name or contact information. Did I miss a step? How will you know who the link is for?

kholland65
5 years ago

Pretty cool song. Only gripe I have about the tracks is that the vocal tuning is a little spotty during certain parts, and you can tell that lots of these tracks where comped because the volume or tone just randomly changes mid phrase. Drums, bass, and guitars are in good shape though.

ross.no
5 years ago

Hang on – I guess I have to join the FB group to hear other entries?

ross.no
5 years ago

So I’ve uploaded the killer wining mix (I can dream) where / how can I listen to the competition, I mean the mixes that other folk have entered?

Or do we have to wait until the winner is chosen to hear some of the other mixes?

I gather that a previous Boz mix contest got 24,000 entries! I’d just like the chance to hear a few of the entries for this competition.

I love all the Boz Digital plug ins I have and like the fact that they look good as well as sounding great.

Thanks for hosting this competition and good luck with the judging I hope it doesn’t break you down, break you daoooowwnnnnn ! 😉

Bassen72
5 years ago

Hi.
Mirror 1 can not be downloaded.
How to get all the tracks then?
Regards Bjørn

sangs1234
5 years ago

what is mirror 1 and 2 ?
are those different tracks or same?

sangs1234
5 years ago

there is some problem while downloading tracks……
i can’t download tracks…

Brand New Groove
5 years ago

I do have a bit of a complaint to be honest regarding this competition. I have started unpacking the audio tracks for mastering and i realised that there is not a bass guitar. This will give poor results in the mastering process and will not allow it to sound as good as it possibly could.

alanatomic
5 years ago

I feel bad about everyone having problems with the download and the midi tracks. I must be in the minority, because as soon as I switched to mirror two, I got everything first try. I should’ve bought a lottery ticket. Haha

Thanks for the contest Boz. I really like the track. I am having lot’s of fun playing around with the guitars, vocals………
I thank everybody in advance for any feedback I may get when I upload the mix.
I found the original drum tracks provided a great start. I may try layering something.

: – )
TC

edc
5 years ago

I usually like to give and get feedback but this time I’ll probably barely have the time to do the mix.
So, sorry in advance if I won’t..
Downloading right now:)

edc
5 years ago
Reply to  edc

but feel free to add me to the group forum just in case 🙂

tibby
5 years ago

ok sort it,it works on mirror 2

tibby
5 years ago

Can’t download any files..server problem they said.Just the midi files. Why is that?

nizzy91
5 years ago

So I cannot get the midi file to play back whatsoever…I know it is user error but I cannot seem to get it right lol. I am in Logic Pro X.

nizzy91
5 years ago
Reply to  boz millar

Yeah, I tried sending it to a virtual Instrument. It wants me to import the tempo settings as well…I don’t know really lol. I will probably just use what you have. Thanks man!

edc
5 years ago
Reply to  nizzy91

CHeck that the virtual instrument’s channel is ste to ‘all’ and, if using kontakt or other players, put them to ‘omni’

m.edgeller
5 years ago

Hi Boz, Many thanks for running this!

I have a quick question you might be able to answer and save me some time. Were the vocals all tracked at the same time for this? (I.e. on the same day with the same mic) Or was it captured over multiple sessions?

Cheers!
Mark

tutle1
5 years ago

Hi 🙂
I live in Denmark (EU). Is the contest open to me?
Like: “you have to be an american citizen to be regarded eligibly”.

Cheers
Nils

Rich Westphal
5 years ago

Thanks Boz !!! Gonna be fun and a great turn out !!!

Bar
5 years ago

What is the name of the song? 🙂

Rich Westphal
5 years ago
Reply to  Bar

Shows as “Low Down” as the name on the sound cloud,,,

Bar
5 years ago
Reply to  Rich Westphal

Thx

Bar
5 years ago

Hi, I can not download the file “mirror 1” whether it is guitar, vocals and drums. I worry about this. I have a mirror 2 it will be enough?

Rich Westphal
5 years ago
Reply to  Bar

Yep, each mirror has the same complete files, just download the separate drum midi file if you want to use it 😀

fmeilleur
5 years ago

Which note map did you use for your MIDI ?

Bob Rocco
5 years ago
Reply to  boz millar

Would it be possible for you to share the SSD4 Player kit preset for your printed drums? I think its a great starting point for many a rock mix. Thanks for your time either way.

music1
5 years ago

Thanks for fixing all the downloads before I got started 😀 No problems on Win 10 – I downloaded all from Mirror 2 and the MIDI file as well and unzipped them with no issues.

Alec Boehm
5 years ago

I downloaded the audio and the midi files. When I opened them in Pro Tools, the midi track was slower (and longer) than the audio. Did I do something wrong? I set up the session as 44.1, 24 bit.

Rich Westphal
5 years ago
Reply to  Alec Boehm

Probably needed to set up BPM of 170 – 4/4 before bringing in the midi file 😉

Alec Boehm
5 years ago
Reply to  Rich Westphal

You are exactly right! I changed the tempo and it now works perfectly…

StratCat451
5 years ago

Can you talk about how you recorded this with regards to mic’s, pre’s, hardware, etc?

5 years ago

Hello,

I have a newbie question. Are the files the same in Mirror 1 and Mirror 2. Just want to make sure I am not missing anything.

Thanks!
Amanda

Rich Westphal
5 years ago
Reply to 

Correct,, both are the same, make sure to grab the drum midi, if you can or want use it…

5 years ago
Reply to  Rich Westphal

Awesome! Thanks!!

Flangdoodle
5 years ago

Confused. September 4th is a Sunday? Do you mean like “no later than 11:59:59” on September 3rd?

Rich Westphal
5 years ago
Reply to  Flangdoodle

Sept 4th 11:59pm and he is probably allowing for everyones particular time zone since he hasn’t stated,,,
I’ll get em in early 😀 not like I do this for a living, yet, lol,,, one day I hope 😀

stripes27@hotmail.com
5 years ago

Got everything, but the midi drum track. I guess that’s a good sign there will be some good amount of competition since the traffic must be messing with One Drive 🙂 Thanks and Cheers!!

painfnp1
5 years ago

It says “error server down”

painfnp1
5 years ago
Reply to  boz millar

Only the “Mirror 1” files for drums, guitars, vocals not working

Glen Felkins
5 years ago

YAY! It’s finally begun. Thanks man, this will be a blast! Good luck to everyone!

ronjohnny
5 years ago

Anyone else having OneDrive issues? It seems to be down, I believe.

Michael
5 years ago

Great Song, Great Opportunity! Thank You!

David Stagl
5 years ago

I’ve downloaded the stems twice now, and when I try and unzip these on a Mac, they extract as .cpgz files.

cavalera
5 years ago
Reply to  David Stagl

i have the same problem, can someone help please ?

cavalera
5 years ago
Reply to  cavalera

i found the solution, dont use the default app ‘ archive utility ‘ . Use something else , i used the unarchiver app , it worked

David Stagl
5 years ago
Reply to  David Stagl

Trying them in Windows 10 now, and I’m still getting errors when I try and extract them.

David Stagl
5 years ago
Reply to  boz millar

Great! Thanks, Boz!

Eoghan Tyrrell
5 years ago

Hi,
I’m afraid the guitar download link gives you the drum tracks.
E

digilyd
5 years ago
Reply to  Eoghan Tyrrell

I am slightly confused and not at all conceptually happy about having the 3 sets of stereo tracks of the guitars, your ascii says that tracks of all the guitars, you do not say it is three melanges. You take important image building options away. That of course is the same for all, but if it was for money I would refuse the task if I did not get the components. However the constraints it poses are interesting even if it is not raw tracks. I do however like the serving of the vox tracks, thank you!

digilyd
5 years ago
Reply to  boz millar

Other trick used … O;-) … but thanks anyway, I think my entry is ready now …

kholland65
5 years ago
Reply to  digilyd

Really!? First of all, you can easily split a stereo track into two mono tracks. I’m not sure why this is a problem for you. Also, the producer’s intentions could very well have been to have stereo guitars in which case you might want to consider his vision in your mix. Honestly, for a rock song like this I don’t know why you wouldn’t want the guitars in stereo. You just need some sort of re-amp plugin since they are just DI’s. They worked fine for me and had no problem getting good sounds out of them in my mix.

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