Once you have completed a track, you’re ready to mix and get it ready for release. Mixing is an art in itself, and beyond the scope of this article. If your recording is simple, like solo guitar or guitar plus voice, mixing will mostly consist of setting levels, adjusting the EQ, and adding a little reverb. Full band arrangements can get much more complex. One option is to record and edit your basic tracks at home and then go to a professional studio for mixing. A pro studio may have better monitors, better reverbs or other effects, and most of all, experienced mixing engineers.
Once your tracks are mixed, they can be prepared for release. Tracks meant for a CD are often sent to a mastering engineer, who performs some final tweaks, assembles the tunes in the desired sequence, adjusts levels between tracks, and generally makes sure everything sounds its best.
When you record at home, you wear multiple hats—performer, engineer, producer, etc.—and recording yourself can be a lot of work. It’s likely that you will learn a lot, not only about recording, but about your music and performance along the way. Relax and enjoy the process, knowing that in the end, you’ll have captured a performance you can be proud of.