Top 10 Best Mixing Books In 2021 | Everything You Need To Know

Mixing Books are saying that “Practice makes perfect.” While that is true for most cases, sometimes it’s equally important to sit down and delve deeper into theories to know what works and how it does so.

If you’re just starting in the world of music production and want to create a solid foundation, reading some good mixing books will surely help you. Check out our list of top 10 mixing books you need to give a read this year.

Best Mixing Books Review

10. Music, The Brain, And Ecstasy 

Music, The Brain, And Ecstasy | Mixing Books

Before everything, author Jourdain takes a moment to explain why music sounds so pleasant to the human ear and how a variety of sounds are capable of triggering unique responses. If you’ve ever wondered about the psychological reason behind you sobbing after a wailing Oboe, this book will reveal the answer.

  • A unique psychological and neurological perspective on music
  • Lucid language
  • Makes the reader appreciate music in its truest form

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9. Mixing Secrets for the Small Studio 

Mixing Secrets for the Small Studio | Mixing Books

Mike Senior’s infamous Cambridge Multitrack Library can be termed the quintessential basic guide for hopeful mix engineers. On the other hand, his book Mixing Secrets For The Small Studio lays down a complete mixing course whilst keeping in mind the techniques and standards of over 100 of the world’s most accredited producers.

  • Senior’s tips
  • Industry’s leading mixing engineer’s ways and methods
  • Easy to understand

8. The Mastering Engineer’s Handbook 

The Mastering Engineer's Handbook | Mixing Books

The third and final installment of the recording/mixing book trio from Bobby Owsinski, the Mastering Engineer’s Book follows in the footsteps of its ancestors to focus on the ins and outs of perfecting a track. You will get all the know-how and knowledge to make incredible sounding masterpieces on your own.

  • The final addition to Owinski’s Handbook texts
  • Teaches the art of mastering
  • In-details about the basics

7. Behind the Glass

Behind the Glass | Mixing Books

Author Howard Massey is seen in talks with many high-profile music producers and recording engineers. With guests like George Martin, Brian Wilson, Philo Ramone, the book gives readers a comprehensive view of each artists’ recording process, philosophy, and techniques.

  • Ideal for anyone wishing to expand their musical knowledge
  • 37 producers’ stories
  • Real-world advice from those geniuses

6. Rick Rubin: In the Studio 

Rick Rubin: In the Studio | Mixing Books

The thing that makes this mixing book different from the rest is how closely it follows the life of music producer legend, Rick Rubin as he unearths his process and divulges secrets. Brown, the author, gives a glimpse of what it was like in the life of Rubin – from his early days to the moments he enjoyed his greatest achievements.

  • A walkthrough of Rick Rubin’s mind
  • Breaks down a unique recording philosophy
  • Great textbook for anyone interested in making music

5. The Recording Engineer’s Handbook 

The Recording Engineer's Handbook | Mixing Books

After the Mixing Engineer’s Handbook, the Recording Engineer’s Handbook is another great read from Bobby Owsinski, and it’s the second installment of his music product book trio. Much like its predecessor, the book dives deeper into making techniques for recording any kind of instrument with a particular eye on making drums.

  • Secrets on how to produce the best sound without high-end gear
  • Total overview of recording
  • Great insight to get the reader out of any complex situation

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4. How Music Works

How Music Works | Mixing Books

While not explicitly a mixing book, How Music Works is a best-selling book that can easily be termed as a must-read for any music producer, musician, or artist. Music legend David Byrne presents a comprehensive look at everything one needs to create music. The author walks the reader through his interesting perspective on how location, context, set design, dance, technology, and many more play a role in making music.

  • New York Times bestseller book
  • Enthusiastic approach to music as a form of art
  • Byrne’s take on what it is to make amazing music

3. Mastering Audio: The Art and the Science

Mastering Audio: The Art and the Science | Mixing Books

The most thorough book on mixing that covers almost everything you need to know about mastering the mixing. This is another book that is strongly situated at the start of many audio engineers’ careers. Albeit a bit dense at times, Mastering Audio by Bob Katz contains pretty much everything about mastering and mixing in this edition.

  • Extremely thorough in every section
  • Integrates technical aspects with artistic ones
  • The writing is authoritative yet not didactic.

2. The Mixing Engineer’s Handbook 

The Mixing Engineer's Handbook | Mixing Books

For a comprehensive mixing book, pick up the Mixing Engineer’s Handbook by Bobby Owsinski – the first installment of the renowned production book trios which we shall get into later. This book provides an in-depth guide to the newest mixing practices while blending age-old, effective techniques.

  • Breaks down the mixing process into bite-size lessons
  • Everything from mixing styles to mix building, layering, and more
  • A textbook in many colleges and universities around the world

1. Mixing with Impact 

Mixing with Impact | Mixing Books

Author Wessel Oltheten explores multiple practical aspects of music mixing but amalgamates his expertise with artistically minded, useful advice. Apart from discussing the technical and creative aspects of making a mix, the author also talks in length about what the starting point is when someone just decides on joining the production world.

  • Realistic, in-detail discussions on the usual topics
  • Describes the basics
  • Explains how you should feel in each situation

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Studying up is an amazing way to excel in music production. But remember, only when you start putting your knowledge to practice, that’s when the mixing books will be worth it. Keep learning but maintain a nice balance between theory and practice.

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