Become a Professional DJ with Music Mixology
Updated 3/7/2011 by SuperMediaStore Staff

Music Mixology


If you're "mature" enough to remember when making a mix tape actually involved, well, a tape, then a customized CD of fresh-picked tracks will bring a smile to your face as big as your headphones. Seriously: No more rips, screeches, or busted tape fragments spewing from a plastic cartridge. With a CD and your computer, you can create a perfectly smooth and satisfying soundtrack in practically no time.

Whipping up a good CD doesn't take a lot of ingredients, just a ripe imagination and careful blending. Follow this basic outline to avoid flat results:
  • Have a plan: Trying to rekindle an old flame? Want festive background music for your holiday party? Looking to create a memorable soundtrack for your high school class reunion? Tie your selections together into a consistent theme and you can't go wrong.
  • Add, subtract, and multiply: Brainstorm artists, albums, and titles; narrow it down; and create your final playlist. Make sure your playlist isn't longer than 74 minutes, which is the capacity of most audio CDs. Also, leave a couple of seconds between songs. Some CD-R drives do this automatically when you burn or copy in the "Track-at-once" mode. If you record in the "Disc-at-once" mode, the laser will burn right through without interruptions or pauses. To practice making a great mix, try our fabulous Inbox Jukebox and send someone a customized musical e-card!
  • Listen to the music: Like it? Proceed. If not, return to Step Two.
  • Name that tune: Think of a title for your mix: "Road Trip Rock," "Boogie Woogie Birthday," "Creole Christmas." Let your wit shine through!
  • Add a "record" label: Forget your permanent marker. With LightScribe Direct Disc Labeling technology and a specially coated disc, you can burn unbelievably professional-looking photo and text labels right onto your CD. And don't ruin the mood with a funky jewel case cover, dozens of customizable jewel-case templates are just a click away with our DISCover Designer.

Now that you have a plan, where will you get the music? Easy. You can pull tunes from favorite CDs in your collection, drag songs from your hard drive, or hop online for a treasure trove of legal downloads. To get started downloading music, you need a software application that can manage and play your MP3 files. Many computers arrive with such programs installed, or you can download players free from the web (i.e., Microsoft's Windows Media Player, Apple's iTunes, or the RealOne Free Player from Real Networks). The best (AKA most legal) places to download music are often subscription-based sites affiliated with record companies, and iTunes, which currently boasts the largest legal download catalog!

Don't use your best song to kick off the mix. Start with an attention grabber, build to an emotional high point (your best song), and mellow out for the ending.

Think theme. Holiday. Date night. Movie night. Music from the _____s (fill in the blank). Sports. Kids. Love. Lost love. Dream Prom Soundtrack. They Must Be Playing Our Song(s) Collection ¡K you get the idea. Create a CDtribute to a certain artist. Or, mix it all up at your next soiree with an eclectic combination that has something for everyone. Nothing stirs up emotion like a good ol' mixer, and with all this easy-to-use technology right at your fingertips, that emotion won't be frustration.

This article is provided to inform and inspire, and is not intended to replace professional guidance and services. Your system and software may be different from what is described and LightScribe is not responsible for troubleshooting or system failures.