How To Release Your Song Digitally (One Song One Month Challenge 8/8)

| Music Promotion, One Song One Month Challenge 2016, Tips, Video

I don’t care how good your song is and how good the final mix sounds, if you don’t release it to the world then you haven’t finished it yet.

Music was meant to be shared, not hoarded to yourself. So in this final episode of the One Song One Month Challenge we are going to put our track out there for the world to hear.

Today I’m going to show you two of my favorite tools for digitally releasing music as well as a strategy for pricing your tracks. Enjoy!

More On The Psychology Of “Free” Music

Like I mentioned in the video, I’ve done a bit of experimenting with offering your music “for free” and making money off of it.

The secret is not to actually give it away, but rather to let people “name their price” and then to offer more value than simply the songs themselves.

When you do those two things, you are reminding the listener that:

  1. Your recordings have intrinsic value – and
  2. You want to offer your fans value for their money

The result is that although many people will simply download your songs for the hefty price of $0, many  more will pay the “suggested price” or more because they want to support you and they see the extra value that you are offering.

Try it out on your next project and experiment with your pricing suggestions and value options. I’d love to know what you discover!

We’ve Come To The End Of Our 30 Day Challenge

It’s hard to believe that 4 weeks have come and gone. In the past (almost) 30 days we have gone from no song, to a digitally released track that sounds great and we are proud of.

Is it our best work? Maybe not. But it’s finished – and as we’ve learned over the years, finishing projects is the surest way to getting better at your craft.

Also, if you missed a video or two, you can catch all 8 of them right here. Feel free to follow the pattern anytime you need a kick in the pants to get some music made in your studio!

So I want to hear from you! As I mentioned in the video:

  • Did you actually complete this challenge?
  • And what was your biggest surprise during this 30 day process?

Let us know in the comment section below. And feel free to link to your completed song as well so we can all hear your great work!


Get Better Mixes By Simply Changing How You Start

The first 60 minutes of your mix will affect everything. Here's my proven method!

479 Responses to “How To Release Your Song Digitally (One Song One Month Challenge 8/8)”

  1. Grayson Peddie

    I thought I might cross-post my question in here if anyone doesn’t go into to watch the video…

    I made my song, but I do have a question. I want to give my song a Creative Commons license:

    I want to share my song for the spirit of humanity, but you talked about naming a price for the song. Why should I want to name the price if I am releasing my song as a Creative Commons license? What about a form of a donation? I mean, a listener does not have to pay for the song if they don’t want to, because I’m not asking them to pay for it. When it comes to Creative Commons, I think “paying for the ticket to go to the concert” is a bad analogy.

    So, can’t my song have value if I give my song a Creative Commons license?

    Check out this article about Bandcamp. I read that Bandcamp is rejecting the foundations of Creative Commons licensing:

    Another one:

  2. Carlo

    I took the challenge, and finished my song today.

    I tried to shape sounds like a maniac during the recording phase. “Like a maniac” means “dedicate a lot longer than usual to tweak sounds to get the best tone I could”.
    Biggest surprise: I ended up with 24 tracks on the mixer and only 19 plug-ins, which is about half of the amount I usually have. En plus, all the moves I did in the mix were small or tiny.
    Bottom line: my songs sound much better than my standard.

    Despite I’ve been making music for years now and had nice results, I took this challenge and decided to take my time and do things along with the videos for one and only one reason: if Brian Eno learns something new everyday, I can definitely learn a lot by doing differently what I’ve been doing for years.

    And I did. I learnt a lot with this challenge. I “see” things differently now.
    Can’t wait to share my song… btw, how do we do that?

    • Jeremy

      Thanks for this series Graham!

      I’m pushing hard to finish my song by Monday. What surprised me the most was how you focus on Eq-one tracks without soloing them. I think I went EQ crazy before trying that method and it has helped keep my instruments/vocals sound more natural.

  3. John McCullough

    Had a lot of fun and learned a lot this month. Took me out of my comfort zone for sure. I normally start recording only after a song is mostly finished, but to start laying down tracks before even starting to write lyrics, or even have a melody, was totally new for me.

    So here’s the link to my brand new nimbit account where you can find my song Eye to Eye, hope you like it.

  4. Chris Fezzler

    Finishing up song soon. I will post where to find it and hope folks listen and provide feedback.

    This was really eye opening exercise for a beginner. Here are my biggest learnings in no particular order.

    – Breaking things into small chunks to produce progress and really make conscious decision along with creative inspiration. Purposefully directed inspiration?
    – Get my basic melody, rhythm and ideas into my DAW. I started a songwriting notebook 6-months ago and have been writing – but as weeks go by – I forget the original musical idea I had
    – When starting, don’t bog down programming drums. Just get a click track replacement 4-on the floor or something simple to get going.
    – There is a lot of power in starting with the hook and building around it
    – As a beginner, keep things simple but that doesn’t mean not finding ways to add dynamics and eliminate POBs (Points of Boredom)
    – As a beginner, keep songs short. 2-3 minutes max. What are my songs always 4m+?
    – If the chorus is the best part, start the song with it.
    – I needed to work on understanding, recording and mixing to timing – point of weakness
    – Spending a month on a song really allows you to think about it, crafts it and change it. The song is a vehicle for expression. In the past I was banging them out. This brought my game up.
    – Get the sound right at the source when recording and you’ll need less EQ and plug-ins in mixing. Huge lesson.
    – I spent hours mixing and developing my ear to hear what tweaks were doing and A-B changes.
    – Save versions so you can go back if you need to reverse direction or to feel free to try new ideas.
    – Minor, small, incremental EQ, compression, etc. make huge differences.
    – Turn plug-ins on and also bypass. If they aren’t significantly adding something, delete them.
    – Something should always be driving interest in the song – kick, snare, hh, bass, breakdown, build-up, etc.
    – Will the song have a chance to get stick into someone’s head?
    – Mixing bass to cut through mix but not take over low end is hard
    – If you can get the mix to sound balanced on ear buds or laptop speakers, you’re making progress
    – Give the people you live with a break, they don’t want to hear the song over and over 1,000 as you work on it.
    – When you get stuck or frustrated, but it down. Go listen to some songs that you think have the feel you are after
    – I can’t sing – so work with or around your limitations.
    – If you have a bad or so-so vocal, burying it in delay, reverb, compression, distortion or effects is not the solution. That ruins the song. Oddly, keep it clean and clear and build interest around it. People will listen to the music and words
    – Reverb is best served on a bus

    So much more I’m sure I’ll think of later.

    • Geoff Kabzinski

      Thanks Chris, you spoke my mind, I should just say ditto.
      Can’t wait to hear your release.

    • Randy Kellogg

      Chris, congrats bro. You pretty much hit every nail on the head. I think realizing how little I understood about the frequencies of the instruments and how they affect each other was the biggest shock for for me. Also, I too do not have a very good singing voice so I pretty much said to heck with it; it is what it is, and let’s face it there’s a lot of lousy singers out there that have had success. I did a few pitch corrections and that was about it.
      I actually did my song last May and uploaded it through Tunecore. It can be found at Itunes or Amazon under “Song About You” Randy Kellogg or on Soundcloud by typing Scoopz69 and the song title.
      After completing this process and continuing to get advice from great guys like Graham I feel the EP I’m working on well be better sounding.
      Good luck to every one out there on your music.

  5. Tyler Wysong

    Had such an amazing time this month!!! Thanks for the challenge, and pushing us to do this. The number one thing I learned while going through this was that if you have a plan you’re chances of succeeding are far greater than if you don’t have a plan. Thanks for mapping it out for us Graham!

  6. Thato Lephoto

    It’s Thato here in South Africa. I only came across TRR a few weeks ago and wow Graham. I loved the one song a month challenge. Its been a rollercoaster of a journey. And I must say, it feels so good to actually start and finish something. I will definitely be using the tips and guidance for the rest of the year, I will be making more music from now on 🙂
    I was truly surprised to notice that you offer all this priceless content for free. Moreover, unlike most people you don’t let people know that they can make decent music with the gear they already have, no need to splurge on fancy equipment, unnecessarily.

  7. Bryan Vanderhill

    I completed the challenge! It was hard work, but a lot of fun. I guess what surprised me most was
    how much I was able to accomplish when I dedicated time each day to it. About halfway through I didn’t think I was going to make it, but persistence paid off. Still feel like my mix could be better, but this is it for now.


    • Marco Castellanos

      Hey Bryan! Very inspiring song with a very profound message for daily life!

      Congratulations, your mix sounds very good!


    • Geoff Kabzinski

      Gudday Bryan,
      Great song, it has done it’s job in encouraging me or more to the point “fixing my eyes” on what is important each day when sometimes my eyes get bogged down with the busyness of life.
      Thanks bro,
      From Geoff of Adelaide down under.

    • Marco Castellanos

      Hey Feda! What a nice song!

      Two things capture my attention; a) what time signature are you playing in the verses, it seems like 1 and, 2 and, 3 and, 4, 1 and, 2…. etc.; and b) love the lead and baking vocals in the choruses, very nice vocal arrangement!

      Well done, congratulations!


      • Feda Curic

        I´m thinking it´s 4/4 but sounds like something else due to the way I play. Not sure though.
        Thank you!

      • Feda Curic

        I have not put ut up for sale, but if you want it I can e-mail it to you for free. Just write me an e-mail.

      • Feda Curic

        Thank you. I often try making a straight forward pop song, but find it difficult. I think creating something simple yet interesting and beautiful is the hardest thing to do. Something to aspire to for sure.

    • Blaise Moritz

      So good, Feda! Very fresh, with echoes of so much great music but so now. I thought of Prince and Herbie Hancock but also Talking Heads. Pretty impressive how well the more straight ahead chorus sits with the song’s funkier sections.

      • Feda Curic

        I appreciated your well thought out comment on soundcloud, but this one is even better since my song made you think of Herbie Hancock! Thanks.

    • Marco Castellanos

      Hey Grayson!

      Congratulations!!!!! Your instrumental piece is very beautiful, and you are and example to follow!!!!!

      The composition but also the arrangement and recording and mixing sounds really good!

      Cheers, Mark.

      • Grayson Peddie

        Ah, thank you for the compliments. I never thought this would come out so good when I did a hook for my song.

        Except for the melody which I pulled it off by playing a keyboard (I’m not a keyboardist, by any stretch), I simply wrote using a mouse in a piano roll. Since one MIDI sequencer (MusE Sequencer) does not provide a way for me to humanize MIDI notes, I simply used a different sequencer (Qtractor) for that purpose.

        The harp glissando is from Digital Sound Factory Studio Orchestra, as I found it impossible to construct a glissando by hand.

    • Andrew MacDonald

      I agree with Marco. I really enjoyed your song. The ambiance, down to even the single piano key played periodically ant the beginning that lead in in to the other instruments coming in was great! Subtle things like that and the dynamics were great.

      • Grayson Peddie

        Yeah, I’m not into film music. 🙂 But I do like to make music that uses symphonic instruments.

    • Blaise Moritz

      Very enjoyable song! Great epic feel with many changes. One small suggestion: if there’s an option to display the length/progress, that might help with a longer piece with an open structure.

      • Grayson Peddie

        Actually, I did not answer why. I’m a Linux user and I don’t think Studio 192 supports Linux but I do know that Presonus 1818VSL is USB-class compliant and it works under Linux. Plus, my heart cannot take the brunt of $2,000 equipment. I’d be stunned and shocked if I win.

        I would rather win a Presonus 1818VSL, but if I had a choice between Presonus 1818VSL or Focusrite Scarlet 18i20, I would go with 18i20 simply because I prefer 6 XLR/TRS inputs in the back instead of having all 8 in the front. And also because the black look of Focusrite is inline with my TC M-One XL.

        Oh, well. My song did not win the giveaway. 🙁

  8. Jordan Michael

    Loved this channel.

    The surprising thing I learned is how much you can get done in one month. I put 9 hours a week in for this month and what I got out of it was 2 songs mostly done, one complete the other needs more editing. I also launched my website for distributing my music on my own terms.

    Very cool.

    I started recording in November so accomplishing this for me was big in and of itself.

    You can view my track here and other work I did in Garage Band in like 2011.

    I will keep posting music there, so that’s fun.

    • Blaise Moritz

      Talk about building out from the hook! Really great hook! In terms of the mix, I envied your bass. It really came through nicely and anchored the song. You mentioned Black Keys as an influence: I could see adding a shredding fuzzed out guitar toward the middle/end. Enjoyed some of your old songs, too. Lots of good musicianship there, like the guitar playing in Take Her Dancing.

  9. Jorge Garcia Melian

    I’ve also completed my song. The biggest surprise for me is that I was actually able to write a complete song in English (which is not my mother language), and completely record it and
    mix it in less that one month. It is posted at:

    I’ll try to repeat the challenge a couple of times more this year to see if it works for me!!

  10. John Eye

    A little off topic, but I am curious to find out your thoughts for off site backup, and long term storage of your clients session files. What solutions have you explored, and what are you currently using.

    Seeing you grab your files from Dropbox made me think of this question.

    Currently I have a server that automatically backs up my record drive every night, but I have yet to settle on a cloud storage solution.


    • John Cornelius

      I just had this issue. Not going to tell you how I solved it, but will refer you to the Sweetwater ‘How-to’ archives.
      I wish I could recall what they call it, but I did exactly what was explained. It cost me $150 total, and I have cloud, and 2 separate external drives going.
      I don’t actually store much of my DAW files, but I save directly to the cloud and one external drive, and the other backs up weekly.
      Cheap fix, and freed up mega-space on my laptop.
      ps I don’t work for Sweetwater and I am a techno clod. If I can do this literally anyone can!

  11. Jorge Garcia Melian

    Oh, and of course thank you Graham for all your help to our music! My song is actually dedicated to you!!!!

  12. Martin

    Hi Graham.
    Great series of videos again. Gave me the chance to exercise the writing and recording side for the first time in a couple of years, except this time I have a few months mixing training and practice behind me. The one month timescale was challenging but I have released what I believe to be my best produced product so far although far from my best song and not even close to a great performance.
    The biggest realization during this challenge was waking up to the fact that until now I’ve been happy to produce “demos” and spent virtually no time rehearsing a song before tracking it. No amount of fine mixing or “magic” plugins can polish a poor performance. This time it took me three days and over a dozen attempts before I could comp together a vocal part that wasn’t totally horrid. In future, a song may take me longer than a month to produce, but it will be one that I won’t feel guilty to ask payment for.
    Here is the link to the last song I release for free:-
    ….and I’m now going to start on a 3 song EP, which I will release before my 1st child is born in June. Now there’s a deadline that can’t be put back! :-)

  13. Mr. Kaplan

    Thanks so much for this!

    This series has really made me take my music to the next level. I’ve had ideas for songs in my head and jot them down in my DAW, but never end up finishing them. This series taught me how to stay motivated and finish a song. I have a song finished, but there are not any vocals. It is just an instrumental. I will be putting it out on Tunecore. Thanks again Graham!

    Jason (Mr. Kaplan)

  14. David Lee King

    I DID complete the process – here’s my song:

    My biggest surprise? I think some of your suggestions for solid mixing were HUGE helps to me. I’m a fine enough musician, but the mixing thing has always been a challenge. Your very straight-forward approach worked, and helped me get my best mix yet.

    The surprise part? It was sorta easy. Shouldn’t mixing be hard, make me sweat profusely, and involve magic and tigers or something??? With your easy approach, it just worked.

    Thanks for the challenge, the learning, and the fun!

    • Blaise Moritz

      Awesome 90s kinda sound. Especially loved the distorted guitar tone, but everything had it’s own space and it was a great full sound with the rich bass holding down the bottom. The vocal harmonies and overall treatment of the voice sat really nicely in the song. I know it’s a introspective, almost downbeat song, but I’d be interested to hear it at a faster tempo.

  15. KD

    Hi Graham,

    I’ve really Enjoyed this journey, it’s very much possible to do a song in a Month, I’ve learned a lot and I see much improvement for this experience.


  16. Howard

    Thanks, Graham. The 30 day challenge is just what I needed to get a song written, recorded, mixed and mastered. I am on my way to check out Nimbit. I am anxious to see if anyone thinks my music is worth buying: I think it is. Once I open an account at Nimbit, I think that will give me incentive to make more music and to keep my endeavor a dynamic thing.

  17. Gareth de-Witt

    Hi Graham,
    Awesome challenge and a brilliant song. Just one thing, we have written, recorded, mixed and mastered……how do you know if it’s ready to be put out there.
    I have a few songs now and yes I think they are good, and yes process wise they are ready.
    But I am having difficulty with the next step, putting them out there.
    It’s a psychological barrier I know, but how do you know when to do it?

  18. Daniel Smidak


    I took the challenge as well and it was a lot of fun.
    The biggest surprise for me was that you can actually force creativity to appear. I always used to think that there has to be the right time for the right song BUT….. nope

    Thank-you for the insight to your workflow that you had provided to us,
    Much appreciated


  19. Matt Higgins

    Thanks for the great challenge, Graham!

    My biggest surprise was how short the mixing process went this time around.

    The time constraint forced me to keep things simple and only keep the most important ideas, which gave me more flexibility AND simplicity when recording was done and mixing began.

    I also chose to do this as a video for my YouTube channel which helped me stay in “performance mode” for the recording, which I think produced a very genuine result.

    Check out the final product here!

  20. Boris

    Hi Graham,

    I can’t thank you enough I’ve learned so much from your website awesome !!

    I had a question regarding Copyrights is it necessary to register your song before putting it out there in cyberspace ?

    • Justin Mooney

      Yeah, I was wondering the same thing. What’s your take on this, Graham? Are we just being paranoid?

  21. Jeff Zahn

    Thank you Graham!,
    You are such an inspiration. I am currently in the process of building my modest home studio and I have saved every video and tutorial you put out. So much very useful information! I know I’m going to produce some fine music because of you. Thanks again, God bless and I wish you continued success!

    • Todd Preston

      Ernest, Thank you so much for your heart for Jesus! Keep sharing the good news my man! God bless you!

    • Blaise Moritz

      Yeah! What a great song. The vocals are so good, with so much old time joy in them. The rough feel of the drums works really well. Be cool to hear a really big piano solo on this one.

  22. Farhan Rahman

    Hi Graham,

    Thank you for this challenge. It has been a great experience so far! I took part in it and I managed to write, compose, record and release my song. Its called “The Bridge”. Here is a link to the soundcloud page:

    Hope you enjoy it!

    Here is the nimbit link as well:

    I bought your track from that website as well. Its sounds great!

    I think this way of looking at producing music really made me think that writing songs and releasing an album is not too far of a goal to achieve!

    Thanks again! Please check out more of my songs in my soundcloud page.

    • Farhan Rahman

      Here is a detailed comment about the song. Includes some of the techniques that I learned from the series…

  23. Joshua Hall


    Cool. I definitely followed along and uploaded my song to be released tomorrow. I use CDbaby because I like that it gets to Spotify and other platforms as well as iTunes. I have used Bandcamp in the past, I may try Nimbit to compile my last 12 singles (1 year of 1 one song a month) and let folks decide what it is worth to them. I think it’s important to put some kind of value on your music, especially as a gigging musician, and be ready to quote clients what you think your time and skills are worth. I think songs have the same value (sometimes more if it becomes some kind of hit).

    I know you inspire so many people because I am one of them. Looking forward to sharing my song with you.


    • John Cornelius

      Which of the main players do you prefer or feel are most beneficial to you (and your music)? I have junk (literally) on Soundcloud. But what about Nibit, and the others? Who knows about these things?

  24. John

    I guess the most surprising thing is actually proving (by practice) that the less effects you use, the bigger sound you get… And the time limit is great for letting mixes go, rather than polishing them forever (and never be really completely happy with it anyway).

    That was a fun month indeed, thanks Graham 🙂

    • Blaise Moritz

      Great guitar sound. That was the hook for me. Made think of Duran Duran at times, but also Eno era Bowie. The vocals brought a nice edge to the song, especially in what seemed like the second verse. The other vocals (sample?) toward the middle and the suitarish solo out added some great interest to the back half.

  25. Gary MacArthur

    I took the challenge and enjoyed every moment of it.. song is ready to go..Thanks for the push…Gary

  26. Bryan Hoogenboom

    I fell on my face in the same spot I always do. Lyric writing. I gotta find a collaborator that’s good with words!

    • Blaise Moritz

      I dig the rhythm. And it’s so different than anything I would’ve listened today otherwise. Wonderful to hear you singing in Russian. Strong vocals and guitar playing!

    • Chris Fezzler

      Combing through entries. So far, all things considered, this is the best I’ve heard so far.

  27. David Newton

    Ok this is the sixth time trying to get this song to reach my vision for it. Must confess to not actually writing it from scratch in this month but the original tracks were layed down inside of a week. Have learned much along the way after joining Graham’s site. From him, and all the give spirits hanging out here. Crank it up 🙂

    • David Newton

      I should have proof read before posting – I meant this is my sixth mix and I did finish it this month – it incorporates many things I have learned watching Graham’s lessons & philosophy. And “give” in the last line should read “giving”.

    • Blaise Moritz

      Great song and lots of great playing–that bass is incredible! My only thought is that the chorus is so strong, both musically and lyrically, and it takes 90 seconds to get there out of a 4 minute song. Maybe try a little instrumental opening that previews some of the excitement of the chorus, or try taking out one of the verses before that first chorus. But once I listened all the way through once and knew what to expect, I also really enjoyed the build.

  28. Jadias

    I’ve been following your blog for some time now and this challenge was so cool! There is so much that I’ve learned from your videos and I hope it shows in my new song. I’m honestly surprised that I was able to complete the challenge on time; it’s just what I needed to get back into the songwriting process. I hope to keep the momentum going throughout the year. Thanks so much!
    Take a listen to what you helped me make here,

      • Jadias

        Hey thanks for listening! I’ve definitely dabbled in a few different genres. I’m really into the more electronic sounds now, including soundtrack oriented music that I’ll be releasing soon.

    • Blaise Moritz

      You’ve got those guitars chiming sublimely! Great playing. I love the chorus of the song so much. It has such a lovely 70s country rock feel. Maybe some busier drumming in the chorus? And I feel like it takes just a bit long to get to the chorus. Love the guitar “harmony” lead-in to the big chorus at the end.

    • Chris Fezzler

      I dig this a lot. Lou Reed vocal quality contrasted with awesome guitar riff and arpeggio. Nice!

  29. Andre'

    Andre’ here from Jamaica.
    Wow Graham! Let me first say that i didn’t actually get to do a song this month, but I was able to pull up a previous mix I had worked on just to test out some of the tips you shared, and…WOW!!! The difference the compression alone made was astounding. I’m an amateur at this, so I never understood compression or the other technical stuff…EQing and panning for example. So I fiddled with the compression and panning and listened to it to see how different the mix would have sounded, and INSTANTLY I could hear the mix get cleaner and more refined.

    Thanks Graham. God bless you man.

    John McCullough and Bryan Vanderhill…Sounding good guys. As I’m listening I’m smiling cause I can hear the tips being implemented in your mixes. Good job guys.

    Chris Fezzler…Thanks for sharing what you learned. Nice.

  30. Edgar Garcia

    Hello Graham! I almost finish my song, but something came into my mind while watching your video and it’s about copyrights. How well is our work protected by uploading it to the net? We as singers/songwritters must protect our work with a licence or something like that (i don’t know much about the topic but i know that every piece of art must have the credit from the owner before send it to the whole world).

    Thanks Graham

  31. Grae

    Hi All!

    Before we go any further, I have a confession to make…

    The lyrics and acoustic guitar part for my song are old O_O

    It’s a song I wrote while on my final tour of Afghanistan and have finally got around to recording and mixing. I’m still not happy with it (I need to re-record the vocals) but to get it where it is in so short a time has amazed me! (You can read the story behind the lyrics/song here:

    Graham, two things have jumped out at me from these video tutorials; the first is the top down mixing process, what a revelation! And secondly, the less is more approach. I used to chuck on plugin after plugin to try to get the sound I wanted, now I chip away at things and only add what I feel I really need. There are even some tracks with no plugins on them at all!

    Oh, and I’m lucky enough to know an award winning blues guitarist who added the solo for me, so I can’t take credit for that!!

    Here’s the song:, I hope you like it.

  32. Christian

    I did it! Here’s the link:

    My biggest lesson/surprise was something I’ve “known” (intellectually), but haven’t experienced like this with a song before…THE POWER OF A DEADLINE (Parkinson’s Law).

    From now on, my releases are going on a physical calendar on my wall in the studio. Having it a month out (and having the awesome training of Rec. Rev. to guide me), made it much more manageable to break into weeks, days, hours, and tasks.

    Thank you Graham and TRR community!

      • Christian

        Thanks Steven!

        I dig your song too! I don’t know if it’s a chord progression similarity or the strings and horns, but when I heard your song start, I thought of “Dancin’ in the Moonlight” (Toploader version) and “Come on Eileen”.

        Love your voice(s?)! An idea for improvement (to my taste, so just my 2 cents) would be more rises and falls in the arrangement. It could be the mastering, but the verses and choruses seem to blend together.

        All in all, your song sounds and feels good 🙂 The horns are super nice

  33. Todd Preston

    I started this challenge on January 16th so I got kind of a late start. However…

    To listen to my song goto:
    please download the song for free and let me know what you think on Twitter @iamtoddpreston

    There were so many challenges it makes it tough to just name a few. I’ll try to be brief so I’ll list them simply.

    The biggest surprise I had during this Challenge was how simple writing and recording a song can be when you break it down into simple steps the way that Graham did! I mostly do Hip Hop music, but I’m pretty sure I’m going to start doing more Rock style music. I really enjoyed it!

    Thank you to everyone who listens to my song! I cannot wait to hear from you and see what you think! God bless you all!


  34. Anthony cabrera

    Hey graham!
    Followed the month challenge and completed a song with my group. We already had a song written, just never thought of recording it til your challenge motivated the idea.
    I biggest challenge I felt was getting over my own insecurities of the piece not sounding ‘the best it could be’. The feeling that I could do more mixing, or could mix it better was very challenging to overcome. The biggest surprise I would have to say is how easy the production part went after utilizing some of your tricks like the Eq and compressing during recording. Never really put much thought into doing that as I would just worry about it during post production in mixing, but that easy process actually made the mixing phase easier. However, it kinda fooled me as well. Maybe cause it was a new hack that I wasn’t used to, but it fooled me into thinking I wasn’t done mixing, that I should have more processing to do as I normally would without doing that hack. I feel that as I have more projects and I stick to that process during production that my mixes will come along more naturally. Anyway, it was a fun month.

    Here is the link to the song on nimbit.


    Cheers graham and thank you for all you do!!
    God bless!

  35. Brandon Keane

    When is this challenge over? I tried finding out the date but have had no luck. I’m assuming Jan 31st?? Can someone please answer back?


    • Geoff Kabzinski

      Same, I’d like to know too. my drummer is only available on the 31st so I’ll have a tight deadline.

  36. Greg

    Thanks Graham, I always look forward to the valuable information and inspiration that you provide. I would note though, (because I feel bad for a couple other people that I know are going to see this lesson) that I wouldn’t agree that there’s no point to creating music, or any type of art unless it’s shared. Especially in the context of your lesson, meaning being made commercially available. Music or any creative endeavor can be a very personal thing. I have students and I know other musicians who get complete enjoyment and satisfaction from the act of creating itself, with no intention of marketing it. So to them, I would say that just writing, playing, and recording can be very rewarding and that they too can gain a lot of proficiency by learning from your videos.

  37. Geir Borholm

    G’day from Australia Graham,

    I must say that I really enjoyed this months journey, usually when I work on a track
    it tacks me about 8 to 10 weeks to get it down, coming up with lyrics, melodies, structure
    and so on, but being put under pressure to come up with everything in one month from
    scratch, was a head spin, but it seemed to work, it’s not my best work ever but I feel
    that I have accomplished something special, and I can tack away the lesson that I don’t have
    to be a perfectionist all the time,
    thank you so much for all you do to encourage us all, we truly appreciate you,

    God Bless and Kind Regards
    Geir Borholm

  38. Big Bailey

    I have learned so much from Graham, and this challenge was much appreciated, i have been writing and recording music for a little while now, but after going through this challenge, i can already tell the difference, Thank you so much for all the great information. Here is our song

    • Jerry Cook

      Big Bailey,

      I will quickly admit that this is not typically the kind of music that I would listen to. That said…I found myself going to side to side with the beat. Great lyrics and great melody. You really made me feel an emotion!!! After all….that’s what it is all about right? Thanks for the tune man. I thought it was great!

  39. Ianto

    I was given some challenges to face (packing up my flat this month, moving temporarily into a wooden caravan where I recorded vocals, my good mic being buried somewhere amongst my boxes) but I pushed through because I really wanted to take part.

    I felt it helped to mix the whole song when I mixed triple tracked vocals onto one track first.

    So, my first song to be made available on nimbit:

    Feedback welcome x

    • BJ

      Hey great song! You finished it. I barely finished mine in time. I thought I wasn’t going to for a while.

    • Blaise

      Cool track! Vocals were cool, especially the use of the vocals in the backing parts of the arrangement. Loved the combo of the simple, catchy progression with the more experimental sounds.

  40. Chuck T.

    I completed the challenge!
    The biggest surprise was using an 6 band EQ and a limiter to master with and having a similar ‘pro’ track to compare against. My best mix was done this way and was noticeably better than my usual method of mastering that I did on the other 2 mixes.
    Thanks Graham!

  41. Steve de Clifford

    Thank you so much Graham for this series in particular. I did the lessons as I received them and love your easy going style. Your practical solutions and explanations have given me confidence to complete the task to a deadline. You addressed many issues I had struggled with in the past.
    I have learned so much I needed to know.
    Thank you for sharing your knowledge so selflessly.

    Regards Steve.

  42. Quintt

    Can’t believe I have just put my song out for sale… Thanks Graham, This last month has turned me around. I have a dozen songs which I will apply this very same process to.

  43. Mitchell R

    Graham, this challenge was a great idea, thanks! It was just the motivation I needed to make some progress on my demos. I’ve been working on an album as a way to reach out to someone very dear to me. I am searching for a good vocalist, and need good demos. So I took the challenge and finished a new song, and not only that, I decided to release a song that I’ve previously gotten very close to demo quality.

    The biggest surprise for me? The fact that I could actually push the button and submit my songs. Wanting to meet this challenge is what caused me to do that. Otherwise, I’d still be tweaking and fiddling until the end of time.

    Here’s the link:

    EveryDay is the song I did for this challenge. Mutual is the song I did previously. The vocals are back in the mix to let the music stand forward, since these are demo songs for finding someone who can really sing.

    Thanks again Graham!!

  44. Robert Chalmers

    I took the challenge, actually finished in less than 30 days. Soooooo, I started a second song and have finished just about everything except for the final stage of mastering…hopefully will finish the second one by Monday. I have been following you for about a year and half and appreciate all your videos and tips….they have helped me tremendously!!!! Thank you for everything!!!!

    • Chris Fezzler

      Holy crap this good! Dam man! Awesome. I got a song I’d love for you to sing.

  45. Wayne Schmitt

    Hey Graham,
    Thanks for your inspiration. I did finish the challenge and posted my song to Nimbit. The biggest surprise for me was tha I didn’t have to invest in more ‘stuff’ to do this project. I have a very minimal investment in hardware…less than $300 total, but I felt totally competent using what I have for this challenge…it was great. Thank you! I appreciate your methods, message, and faith. God bless.

  46. KABLE54

    Song Finished.



    Biggest Surprise: Once I decided to make this happen, the song took only a few days to compose and finalise.

    Thanks Graham

  47. Felix Hildén

    TL;DR Thanks! Awesome month, learned a lot, but hopefully a lot more during the year.

    Thanks for the good start of the year! Starting in a university was apparently only the second best thing this year so far.. And listening to a few of the other songs you guys have made, nice! The most surprising thing for me is propably that I got my own ass up and sung. Not something I’m comfortable with. But I did it.

    Anyway, I think I should be realistic. I’ve only “mixed” for a year now and this was my first project completely independent, I even wrote lyrics and sang myself – yet another first one. So I’ll start with the downsides. I’m not happy with my singing pitch or sound. I should take some vocal classes. On the other hand, I think the lyrics and back ground vocals came out rather well. I started with the piano part, the chord proggression for the chorus and moved from there.

    Recording-wise, when reading about the whole “commit to a sound” and “great recordings = easy mix” I’m a bit alienated with the thought. I work completely in the box, guitar/bass going straight DI, programmed drums, even piano and synths are vst. So it’s perhaps too easy for me to just fiddle with the snare sound right before mastering. After all.. it’s MIDI. Maybe just printing every instrument before mixing could ease my mind.

    The song’s a bit heavy rock. So when layering guitars and piano/pads I ran into some issues with clarity. The issues sadly didn’t fully go away. But maybe in my head I’m hearing a bright funk song instead of a deep rock one. For contrast, in the last month I discovered the world of delays and over the top reverbs. I previously have used only a bit of reverb. Delay on vocals for some reason sounded always a bit off. But the lead guitar sound was very satisfying. And the fact that I got a longer universal reverb send working for me. And as it turns out, I only used a limiter to boost the overall level. Attenuation max 0.5dB, and still RMS around -12. But not sure if that’s a good thing or a sign of over compression.

    Final thoughts:
    I can’t believe half a year ago I was asking Graham about which attack time to use when compressing a vocal. Not a particular vocal. No. Just ‘a’ vocal.. I hope I can come back in a year and laugh about the struggles with this challenge. If so, then I’ve learned something.

    Thanks Graham and the whole TRR community. This is a brilliant source for knowledge and inspiration.

  48. Steven "Sonic" Beltran

    Hello Graham & Recording Revolution Community,

    I just finished my song for the One Song, One Month challenge. It’s called “Talked to You” and can be found on Nimbit:
    I had no idea where this song was going but I must say I am happy with the results for being “under the gun!” There were many surprises in this 30 day challenge but if I had to pick one it would be the confidence I gained within the short amount of time. Thank you Graham for all your lessons and motivational videos. I look forward to many more insightful lessons, tips, etc. from you and greatly appreciate you pointing out other people in the industry such as: Fab DuPont, Dave Pensado and Joe Gilder, to name a few!! Thanks again!!! Have a great night!

  49. Ed Guerra

    Did I finish the song?

    Hell yeah! I am, however, thinking about releasing it as a single for an upcoming EP (already got 3 songs in the can).

    What did I discover during this challenge?

    I fibally discovered my sound. Something I’ve personally been struggling with for a while now. This sound I came up with is one that makes me absolutely happy and is consistent with previous songs I’ve done while being distinctive, as it is a mixture of my Hard Rock roots which I live by and my longing to experiment with Electronica and other Electronic sounds.

    What did I learn?

    I learned that I’m capable of writing a full song from thin air and let my mind take over the direction of the sound. My mind is my North and all that I’m learning is key to achieving the sound I imagine.

    I learned to use EQ and Compression to shape a sound closer to what I hear in my mind, a sound that benefits the mix and overall composition.

    I improved my use of Delays.

    I used half the amount of guitar tracks to achieve the same thick, giant, wide, powerful wall of sound I love so much (only 2 guitar tracks (-; ).

    I improved my use of automation and programming to get the sounds and effect I’m looking for, and to maintain a clean mix.

    Been recording full songs since last year, started with a tribute album to Alanis Morissette’s ‘Jagged Little Pill’ and been recording mostly covers on YouTube since, but nothing satisfies me like an original song from my own blood, sweat and tears.

    Graham, I want to thank you, I’m a better songwriter and mixer thanks to you, to your videos, your advice. Keep doing this, I’ll keep using the One Song, One Month challenge as my blueprint; hopefully, I’ll have enough material this year to release my debut album.

    Much love from Venezuela.

  50. Cash

    Greetings Everyone,
    Graham, I’d like to thank you for putting me on a deadline. I didn’t think I could do it, but low and behold setting a deadline forced me to get past: ” its not perfect yet” and posting up a song on nimbit is quite liberating. Before this challenge, I would have kept tweaking and noodling and then some more noodling, followed by even more tweaking!!! But you said it had it go up by the end of the month, and to be honest, I’m not 100% happy with what I posted, but having something at 85-90% of expectation that someone might hear, perhaps enjoy, is better than 100% of something “great” that no one will ever hear. Again, thank you for forcing me to “put it out there”.

  51. Ben

    Hey Graham.

    I have loved the 1 month 1 song challenge. Really focused the process.
    It proved to me a couple of things.
    1). When I say “I don’t have time”….i really do
    2). If I make decisions instead of endlessly tweaking I get stuff finished
    3). Music is actually more fun for me if I have a finite time to get it done. Something I will be continuing with.

    Check out the finished article

    Having released my first ever album at the end of last year (which took me forever) this has shown me that I can easily release my second by the end of this year 🙂

    Looking forward to what you do next


    • Ianto

      It’s really good man. To be honest I don’t know how good I am at discerning the better of two decent mixes – if the mixes are both clear enough it will be the song I like best that lights me up the most. I like your song a lot. Well done. Nice work x

      • BJ

        Thanks Man! Glad to here you liked it. For me it’s a just little intimidating posting it when there is so much good music already here. I really appreciate the feedback.

        • Ianto

          I know what you mean about that BJ. I try my best to let go of the story that I’m in competition with anybody. It’s sometimes easier said than done, for sure, but hey, having fun and then sharing it – I can think of worse things 🙂 x

  52. Gary Taylor

    Well, I actually did it! I have a song finished and out there on Nimbit. I’ve fought with myself for a month, then with the business wheels to set up accounts to make a song go live. It’s done now…
    Inspired by everyone’s effort and commitment. Outstanding.
    Biggest thing for me has been suspending the inner critic and just getting on with it. Been listening to Graham’s podcasts too. Why would it be perfect, it’s my first song?




  55. John Keffer

    I took the challenge. You can listen to and download my song, “A Better Way” on my website, . I played and sang everything myself. I guess what I find surprising is that sometimes you’ll record a song and struggle to get it to sound the way you pictured it in your head. Other times you can record a song and it comes out exactly how you pictured it, without much effort. Thankfully with this song, it was the latter.

    Cheers and enjoy the track,

  56. joan

    hope folks listen and provide feedback.
    i completed the challenge, It was hard work, but a lot of fun. I guess what surprised me most was, that i started one song before the challenge, but did not work for me. in the half of the challenge, i start again, following your steps and was wonderful. i also check out some of your old videos of songwriting to help me with the lyrics and that was all. not very happy with the result but i think it sound ok, will you tell me your opinion? it will very helpful.

    • Ianto

      Hi Joan. I would like to have heard the vocal come through more (just my personal taste), but I really like the song. It lifts my spirit. Thank you x

    • Gary Taylor

      Nice going Joan, I love the drop just before the chorus kicks in, very effective. Good to see another finished project.

  57. Nacho Moreno

    Hi Graham! Hi guys!

    Find my brand new song recorded and mixed in january thanks to the encouragement of this “one month one song challenge”.
    I wanted to make a song but I didn’t find anything to sing about. So this tune is about not feeling the need to tell something to the world but just wanting to sing and play. Wait! then maybe I wanted to tell that I didn’t have anything to say, if it makes any sense 🙂

    Anyway, congrats Graham for this initiative and for everything you do, and congrats to everybody who made it!

    I appreciate any feedback from whoever kindly spend some minutes to listen to it.

    Thank you!!!

    • Gary Taylor

      Excellent Nacho, that’s how I felt when I started the challenge, “nothing to say”! Some good guitar skills shining through in your mix. Upbeat and very catchy. Well done.

  58. Nacho Moreno

    Hi Graham! Hi guys!

    Find my brand new song recorded and mixed in january thanks to the encouragement of this “one month one song challenge”.

    I wanted to make a song but I didn’t find anything to sing about. So this tune is about not feeling the need to tell something to the world but just wanting to sing and play.
    Wait! then maybe I wanted to tell that I didn’t have anything to say, if it makes any sense 🙂

    Anyway, congrats Graham for this initiative and for everything you do, and congrats to everybody who made it!
    I appreciate any feedback from whoever kindly spend some minutes to listen to it.

    Thank you!!!

  59. O'Flaherty Ryan

    Well I didn’t get a song finished. I have many excuses but ultimately the timing wasn’t right and I am in the middle of a mix that’s taking a long time. I did however, follow along and was able to identify some challenges.
    My songs aren’t finished before I mix: I record the basic tracks and start mixing then inspiration hits as I hit the sweetening phase. Because I’m playing most of the instruments what’s “needed” isn’t always known upfront. This process takes a long time as I only have a few hours/week to dedicate to this and if I’m uninspired during my allotted time then often things don’t get done.
    I guess I’m still developing what works for the type of music I make too.

    Thanks for all the videos and tips. I am applying them and they are working. My goal is to get to a place where I can get a song done in a month.

    • Bryan Vanderhill

      Really cool Craig. I think it sounds very professional, like it should be theme music for a drama on TV. Easy to hear individual parts. Nice work!

      • Craig

        I appreciate the feedback Bryan! I have about 13 other songs I’m working on. I’ve had the same feedback about another of those too.

        Funny enough, that’s what I plan on focusing on after I’m finished with this CD. I’ll be posting tracks to AudioJungle.

        Thanks again for listening.

  60. NoMaD

    The big thing I learned is that when I force limits on myself, I work hard to make the best of what I have instead of dreaming about what I could have. Simple but, so easy to forget.
    Here is my track! Any suggestion or feedback is appreciated .

    • Pete M

      Hi NoMaD,

      A great musician once said: Art is tears or goosebumps (or bother).

      Listening to your voice gets me goosebumps! Wow, very emotional singing.
      Unfortunately do my headphones distort a bit when the bassdrum comes in. I didn’t have it on other tracks I listened to here (yet).

      Wonderfull song.

  61. Tim Rosko

    Unfortunately, I did not get to do the 1-song 1-month challenge this month due to previous commitments, but I have kept up with the videos and plan to do start the challenge next month! Luckily this is a leap year, so I have almost as many days in February as I would otherwise!

  62. Iván A. Ogñenovich

    Hi Graham!
    This is our song for the challenge:

    My brother (Boris) wrote the music, recorded guitars and bass, and I wrote the lyrics, recorded drums and vocals and then mixed everything.

    It’s been a pleasure following this challenge, we’ve learned a lot!
    Thanks for the opportunity, and thank you for sharing your knowledge with us!
    Greetings from Argentina!

  63. Douglas M

    Hey Graham,

    I did not take the challenge because as I mentioned in another blog I am not a song writer per se…I record, mix and master. However, I have been following the “One Song One Month Challenge” videos and have gained more knowledge about the music world…both technical, creative and even marketing as well! As always, you share wonderful material with us all!

    Thank you and God Bless! 🙂

  64. Kraig James

    Thanks to Graham and also the whole community here for encouragement. Up here in Northern Minnesota, there’s not much to do, so the 1song1month came at a perfect time. I’ve had a few tunes circling in my head and never taken one through the whole process.

    Through the month, I learned many techniques, although my initial tune is pretty stripped down, in fact I recorded my vocals in an ice fishing shanty when the fish weren’t biting. I was able to setup an AKG Perception 200 Condenser mic into an iPad to record those tracks into Garageband, then export later as WAV files to work with them. So the vocals were done completely off-grid, which was my biggest learning experience!

    I think also knowing when not to overdo it is helpful.

    Also, the approach of providing free music is very interesting. I’m going to have a song available for free on my site for a month, but also link to purchase.

    So here is Teardrops and Elephants, enjoy!

    Also, I’m going to continue this challenge each month and my goal would be to have 12 songs out by December 2016, referring back to Graham’s vids to keep things top of mind. #OneSongOneMonth #AllYear

    Anyone want to go along for the ride? It takes a village!

  65. Keith McIntyre

    I took the challenge and released my song to prior to video 8

    Nimbit looks very interesting. I will check it out! (Ditto for TAD!)

    I’m learning sooo much about using my DAW and mixing. Your tutorials are awesome!

    Right now I’m still fighting my DAW software. (Sonar X3) And then there are all the VSTi instruments. And recording techniques, song arranging, mixing, mastering… Yikes! But it is a lot of fun and I can’t wait to really feel comfortable with the whole process.


  66. Gino Buonamici

    Finished up this mix of a song from my studio project called “Nothing Can Keep Me From You”. Love to hear some feedback good, bad or indifferent. Enjoy

  67. Jimmy Smith

    I posted my song last night and as of this morning it is still “awaiting moderation”. What the heck?

  68. Mike

    Just getting back into recording this last year after a long hiatus and am TOTALLY blown away by how much the landscape has changed, and all of the technology so readily available to us home studios now. I have really liked Graham’s tips and tutorials over this last year and am currently going through his REthink Mixing.

    Here’s a tune I wrote with my son – we started with a drum loop and bass line, then he did all the synths in FL Studio. We mixed and “mastered” in Studio One — not the “final” master yet, but I’m hoping to be able to put Graham’s mastering tips to use as soon as I’m done upgrading my PC.

    My main takeaway other than all of the fantastic and practical tips from Graham: “Perfection is the enemy of good.” Great idea Graham – thanks!

  69. Steve Burger

    Great series, Graham! I took the challenge (ready or not) and put my song on Nimbit. Didn’t have a PayPal account so I had to put it out there free…even though it’s worth twice that much!

    Song title is: “Bad Girls (Are Good For Me)”

    Thanks for the great series and all the time you take to make us better!

    I attended the SRA this past summer and had a blast! Still playing with the mix for “Hope”!

    Thanks again!

  70. Randall

    Well, I never thought I could produce a song in just one month. I liked Grahams idea and decided to try it and give to it the best I have, and I did it.
    Firts the inspiration came of a situation I lived the last week of 2015, so I wrote it and planned de arrangement, then started recording, mixing and then it was finished. This is my first high quality project finished. I am so thankful for the motivation I found here in this blog, and want to keep growing following you closely. Greetings from Costa Rica.
    PS: the song is in english, even though it is not my first language, that makes me thing more on the value of setting a finish line , I mean, i could finished a song in my second language!

  71. Rob Reid

    This was an amazing motivator! Thanks again Graham!

    I ended us having a crazy month and did a 6 song in on month challenge. I’m crazy!

    The hardest thing I find is getting a good balance in the bass and kick drum. Getting it to stand out but not be too loud

    Coolest thing I learned was “eq”ing two doubled electric guitars to compliment and fit together instead of just having them mushed together!

    Thanks again Graham! Everything I know I owe it all to you!!


  72. Nadeem Merchant

    My song, “The Answer” :

    Did you actually complete this challenge?
    Yes!!! I’m so glad I did! I used the ISK mic that I won at the meet up in Tampa. I also used that DAT app you told me about for the cover art.

    And what was your biggest surprise during this 30 day process?
    That I would find time to complete this song. Once I started writing and recording the song, I got excited about it and I wanted to make time for it. The whole process became fun!

  73. Dennis C.

    I completed the challenge. I had an idea knocking around in my head and forced myself to do something with it for this challenge. It’s the song called “Panic” at the top of my list here:
    What surprised me the most about this whole thing was that I finished the song by mid-January. It was a great exercise in committing to something and getting it done. Of course, I had to take an afternoon off work to track the rhythm guitar parts (mic’d my amp). I did the lead guitars at night with my line out while the kids were asleep (which is also when I did the bass and drums [EZdrummer 2]). The best thing to come out of this for me was actually creating a SoundCloud account and putting my stuff out there. I just signed up less than a week ago, partially because I was thinking that Graham was going to make us distribute the song in order to be considered for the prize. I like that my music is out there now.

  74. Ron Karim

    This one took me more than a month, but my first try in trying out techniques I learned from Graham. I put the soundtrack on a Drone Video (search for Youtube Ron Karim, to see that).
    I am a software engineer who have been dabbling with recording mixes recently …
    Hope you like it ….although I got many miles to go ….

    • UJM

      First: Where did you buy the weed? Must be great stuff 😉 I laughed my ass of because this is really crazy (in the most positive sense!). Keep it coming man.

  75. Bill

    Creating the song in a month has been awesome. But, like ZIONIRIE said, getting my PayPal to work with Nimbit has been an absolute nightmare!!!!!!! This is exactly the stuff I hate to do. I love going home every day to work on music and other creative projects so January has been great. But sitting for hours typing in stupid passwords and going from bank site to paypal site to nimbit site over and over is a slow and painful death. ( I wouldn’t have this problem if, like usual, I just never finished the song.)

    • Dennis Fry

      Cool tune Barry! I like how you panned your vocals (double tracked?). I tried the same thing in my tune and ended up liking how it sounds.

  76. Rob D Steward

    Ok, I think I’m going to make it. (Nothing posted yet, but I’ll probably need right up to the evening of the 31st!)

    The most surprising thing? I could list quite a few, but the biggest one is just how hard it is to get from “75% done” to “100% done”. Man, oh man, I really and truly have never finished recording a single actual song… The number of hours I’ve put in to recording this one song is easily 5 or 10 times more than any single other half-finished (or less!) project I’ve been collecting on my hard drive for a decade or more.

    However, your contest was very, very timely. I had already decided that 2016 was going to be the year I “got serious”.

    If I had any sense, I’d have chosen very specifically to do a simple song with easy rhythms, vocals, etc., just so I could focus on the recording (which I’m still pretty clueless at… I’ve been in the DAW manuals and/or research on Google every single day). But, I just started writing and the song sort of became more and more challenging.

    I’ll comment here again once I have a link to the final song… but don’t expect it until maybe 11:59pm on the last day of January.

    And thanks for doing this. It probably helped me learn more in one month than I’d likely have accomplished in 4-6 months. (Serious though I was, I had no deadlines. This month has been full of ,”No, I’m not going to be able to do that. Ask me again in February!” Ha.)

  77. Jack-E Wilson

    Hey Graham,

    I have finished and published! For any interested, the song can be heard here:

    This was a great experience and exactly what I needed to get the year rolling.
    I think what surprised me the most was how fast the month went by! I had a computer issue about 3 weeks in, and it was looking entirely uphill to the finish. I was still able to get it done and now’s the time for champagne.

    Looking forward to listening to some of the other entries.


  78. Brent Rains

    Really excited about all of this. It has really helped me in learning a process of getting the song done. Thank you Graham for your work.

    I have followed along each step but not submitted yet. Will do tomorrow.

  79. John Willis

    I finished the challenge and uploaded my song to sound cloud and then shared via Facebook. It really seems like nimbit is a great option for sharing music so I am definitely going to be doing that!

    I surprised myself this month by how much music I was able to finish – 2 originals and 1 cover just for fun! This is already shaping up to be a great year of great music! (At least…I think it’s great haha)

  80. olof

    Greetings Form germany.
    I Finals released my first song.
    Thank you Graham for making me do this!
    The more i read in the comments the more i think hat we all went through very mich the same things in the last Mont.
    Form Europe to south america Form south africa to north america.
    The wordl became a bit Maler in Januar 2016 because of you.

  81. Bas


    Thanks for the challenge Graham. Lots of firsts for me during the challenge. I never released a song before, I never seriously recorded myself singing before, and I can’t remember if I ever wrote a complete song before (probably did in my teens).

    I tried to apply all tips except the last one. I don’t like using an app to put together cliche cover art. A good song deserves genuine cover art. For my song I drew something myself, but you could also ask a friend who is more visually creative to create a cover that is inspired by your song.

    Anyway, it was a fun month!

  82. Greg Arenz

    Took the challenge and made it just under the wire – thanks for the inspiration to get this done Graham! You can check it out at

    Most surprising about the whole process was actually figuring out how to overcome all the supposed limitations…examples include my ancient copy of Pro Tools 6.4, stock plug-ins, a failing audio drive (or motherboard – who knows?!), having no where nice to track (I recorded acoustic guitars and vocals in the family minivan!), having no good time to track (not wanting to miss any time with my 2 and 4 year-old kiddos pushed recording and mixing time well into the wee hours) etc. etc. These are things that would have stymied me in the past…and I think the inspiration to overcome is really what I’ve gotten from your blog overall Graham – and what I need to thank you for the most. There really are no limitations – just more opportunities to be creative.


  83. Bill

    Done! Finally finishing something is exhilarating in and of itself. In the past I’ve made comments on Graham’s blog that my tracks never sound good enough to me so I’ll basically never finish them. But, nonetheless, having recordings on a CD with my wife singing, my son playing the drums and me playing everything else is enough to make me happy. I’m still fine with that. But, thanks to the Recording Revolution and the techniques that I learned from the Jumpstart Series, in this one month I was able to take a story from my mind, and a melody and lyrics that were just another one of my strange ideas and turn all of this into a finished product.

    It all came about really fast but the main challenges we faced were:
    1. Lead Singer (my wife) had pneumonia so I had to get everything else ready until she was well enough to sing again. This melody requires extensive range and power.
    2. Difficulty getting my Paypal and Nimbit to work. This was very frustrating!

    Anyway, thanks to Graham and everyone that has been doing this. I’ve been inspired and entertained by your comments and videos and I’m enjoying listening to all of your songs!

    Here’s my tragic New England song:
    The Legend of Noble Hall

    Long ago in this small New England town on a dark and misty morning a school girl sits and waits by the old mills watching the river weave and churn about the rocks. Although the bells ring off in the distance she stays right where she is. In the darkness of her mind she can see no way out and she believes that she can never fit in. She’s the new girl. She’s not pretty, she’s not tall and she just doesn’t look like the others. The river only – her eternal friend.

    A small bit of kindness could have changed the past.

  84. Christian

    I really enjoyed this one month challenge.

    First of all here is a link to my song on soundcloud:

    And Nimbit if you want to download it:

    This is the first song I’ve ever written, recorded, mixed, and released all by myself. It has been a massive learning curve. Before this month I had just been tinkering with mixing and writing music using a DAW rather than with a live band (which is what I’m used to). The one month challenge gave me the kick up the butt I needed to get something finished and released and this song is what has come out.

    Being new to mixing, that was the part that I had the most trouble with. I had plenty of ideas but when I got to the mixing stage I really started to realise that less is more, and the more plugins and unnecessary instruments and lines I cut away, the better the track sounded. Considering it’s my first home recorded and home mixed track, I’m pretty pleased with the result!

    Thanks for the motivation Graham.

  85. James Thrasher

    Hey Graham! As always thank you, thank you, thank you. I did complete the challenge. Finished up the artwork late last night and I’m posting to Noisetrade and Bandcamp today. Biggest thing I’ve learned is that with a only a little bit of intentional, focused time, I can continue to put out music that I want to share and not be overwhelmed. This is the start of me finishing my second album after completing my first EP I put out in 2014. You helped me get bring that project to life as well. Keep up the inspiring work and thanks as always for the incredible tips and content. Here are the link to my song “Stay by Me”.


  86. Dennis Fry

    Well I was able to finish my song. I learned that I enjoy writing for different genres, as this particular song was outside of my “normal” style. In the process of writing early on, I came up with 4 other ideas that were really cool, but more extensive than I knew I could do well with my limited time.

    I think I learned mostly that having a set arrangement using scratch tracks helps me focus when it is time to record.

    I’m definitely glad I took the challenge and finished it, and it is encouraging to hear everyone else’s stuff too. I think it was a bit of a motivator to know a lot of other home studio musicians were out there crafting something to share too. People put some really cool tracks out there! Thanks again Graham for the challenge and for sharing your knowledge!

  87. Marc Korte

    Hey Graham and all,

    I finished! The hardest parts of the challenge were to leave things alone. I REALLY want to re-record some parts toward the end of the challenge (vocals), but I held back and chose to finish the project as is. There is always next month. 🙂

    Here is the song and thanks for the motivation!

  88. Kurt Weber

    Well, if anyone reads and tries the link ,can you tell me why my song doesn’t come up as a sample on Nimbit? is it because I need to set up my homepage or something? I’m sorry but a bit lost.

    the song came out much better than expected, especially when adding the master bus fx–limiter in particular–and referencing volume. Though, the whole release-thing is brand new to me.
    I’m not sure if it was “fun” or kind of like a college assignment! It feels good to be (almost) done, that’s for sure.


  89. Rich Primo

    So glad to find the Recording Revolution. It has been one of the biggest inspirations for me to finally start recording and mixing my own songs. This is something I always desired to do because I wanted the message in my songs to go out to the world. The biggest challenges were one, actually finishing an entire song and two, the daunting task of getting a decent mix. Well…Graham and his tools and helpful vids have changed that! Finally I am doing what I love to do and have the desire to collaborate with other songwriters and mix engineers, producers, etc. Thank you Recording Rev for the priceless gift of inspiration to write, record, mix and get our art out the world!
    Looking forward to submitting my song on Monday. Its called Redeemed.
    Didn’t think I would actually be able to finish in one month as getting into all the ins and outs of mixing is not easy. Arranging several dozens of tracks, eq-ing, adding effects, etc. was the most challenging. Especially not losing the kick and snare in all the sound. P comping really helped with that. I would keep scratching my mix and starting over keeping in mind the things I have learned from Recording Rev. Finally I ended up with something I am happy with. I hope you enjoy it as I definitely enjoyed the journey!

  90. Sal DiGuardia

    Hey Graham and TRR family!!!

    – Challenge completed!!

    – My observations:

    1. Very excited to hear everyone’s tracks. You guys all need to know how blown away I am that every single track sounds like they were recorded and mixed at a Nashville or L.A. studio. Kudos all!!!!

    2. Positive: I used Maroon 5 “Makes Me Wonder” and I was shocked at how close I got in my mix to a similar EQ curve. I was very excited to see and hear it which tells me some things are working!!

    3. Another Positive: I started this project with no lyrics so when recording week came and i needed to sit down and write, I was shocked at how everything just flowed. I just let the song tell me what would work at it just worked.

    4. Opportunity: Although I was successful in spacing out the guitars using the techniques that Graham showed us, I have a lot of work to do in carving out the proper frequencies for each element to sit in the mix with clarity. Also vocals I was able to use just one vocal track and get it to sit right in the mix but my tendency is to bring in multiple layers and delays. So while I think it’s an Okay final I HAVE TO get better at mixing with EQ. A lot of this issue comes from years of abusing my ears. (*Note: Guys, protect your ears. Don’t crank your cans and monitors up too hot all the time and use earplugs at any live event.)

    5. Opportunity: Not sure if it me or Reason (I tend to believe user error first ) but I am still about 2db quieter than my reference or any other track on iTunes. This track is louder than my album I just released but still just a hair quieter than others. I did export one version that was a bit louder but it was a brick wall and pumping too hard.

    6. Positive: I managed to release my EP while working on this project at the same time which I fell is a HUGE accomplishment.

    Feel free family to take a listen and give me any feedback you have. I’d really appreciate some advice on ew and my master level.

    I submitted my single to cdbaby for distro but it’s not public yet so I uploaded this version to YouTube for you to preview.

    Thanks Graham!!! You’re an amazing human for doing all of this work for us!!

  91. John Hathaway

    I’m just about done with the challenge, will post my song “Together, apart” to my Soundcloud page on Sunday night.

    The thing that surprised me was how following Graham on this challenge demonstrated how less is more – how using fewer plug-ins, how (largely) adjusting eq on the whole rather than on isolated tracks, how these tweaks to my approach yielded positive results – more productive, for sure, but also a better sounding mix.

    Thanks Graham!

  92. Jonny Nedwich

    I couldn’t believe how quickly the results started coming, using stuff from this month’s tutorials as well as other things I’ve picked up on Wish I’d gotten into it sooner. Graham, you’re a legend.
    1 song wasn’t enough, I finished 3. I guess we plug our new songs here
    cheers y’all
    viva la revolution!

  93. Jay

    Well gotta say that was fun. I’m one of those people who are never satisfied with my own songs. I told myself no matter how I feel about the song I would call it done at the end of the month. The time has come and I gotta say I’m a lot happier with it then I thought I would be. I now see the value of a deadline. It has forced me to work faster and smarter and the end result is better than expected. Thanks Graham.

  94. Paul D. Good

    I just completed the song for the January 2016 challenge so I thought I should share it. My wife and I decided on a few weeks in January and February for writing songs before I heard about you challenge. We got a late start, so we had to work pretty hard to complete it on time.

    I’ve been watching your videos for a few years and really appreciate all your work. Very helpful and I’ve learned so much.

    One of the things I learned this month is from the 7th video on making sure the song is ready for radio. I’ve used songs before for comparison of the specific style I was trying for. But I never actually loaded other songs on a track next to my mastered song like you showed in the video.

    Still have to work with the concept, but I think I got the hang of it.

    Hope you enjoy the song enough to make a donation 🙂 …….. Seriously, I hope the song encourages you every time you listen to it. Enjoy….

  95. Paul D. Good

    I just completed the song for the January 2016 challenge so I thought I should share it. My wife and I decided on a few weeks in January and February for writing songs before I heard about you challenge. We got a late start, so we had to work pretty hard to complete it on time.

    One of the things I learned this month is from the 7th video on making sure the song is ready for radio. I’ve used songs before for comparison of the specific style I was trying for. But I never actually loaded other songs on a track next to my mastered song like you showed in the video.

    Still have to work with the concept, but I think I got the hang of it.

    Hope you enjoy the song enough to make a donation 🙂 …….. Seriously, I hope the song encourages you every time you listen to it. Enjoy….

  96. Andy Randazzo

    Thank you sir, I completed my song and it’s my best recording yet. Your demeanor and content are fantastic and I have learned so much from you. I’m was most surprised by how useful some of my stock plugins (that I had not used up to this point) are and how they can really take my sound to the next level. Some examples are the fuzz-wah, lofi, etc.

    Anyway, thanks again and keep up the great work!

  97. Eric Gowan

    Thanks Graham. I did not expect to finish it with everything I have going in life but once again, I was able to “AND.”

    You know, “I worked everyday this month AND I hung out with my family AND I went snowboarding, AND I wrote, produced, recorded, mixed, mastered, and released a brand new song.”

    Thanks again for the push.

      • Eric Gowan

        Yeah Pete! Thanks for the compliment. I always feel my hooks are so generic. I tried to play with the negative space a little with this one.

  98. Brian

    Hey Graham

    I’ve been burning the midnight oil getting my song ready for submission. There have been a lot of surprises for me in accepting this challenge. It usually takes me several months to write, arrange, record and finish a song. I let it come to me when it wants to, and I usually have several works in progress going for quite a few months. I suppose the biggest surprise for me was that I was able to write, arrange, record, mix and master a song that grew from a tiny spark of an idea that I had on January 4th, 2016, and I feel that this song is one of my best. Thank you for the push, and for giving me an opportunity to prove to myself that I can do this. You are the man


  99. Rob D Steward

    Alrighty, here it is!

    Quite literally, this is the first actual recording I’ve finished, though I’ve been puttering and dabbling for many years.

    And I answered the “most surprising” question in a post above but I might change my answer. I’m very surprised at how hard it was to stop trying to “make it just a little better” and declare it “done”. It reminds me of an expression I once heard to the effect of, “art is not so much completed as abandoned”. 😉

    Thanks again to Graham!

    • Rob D Steward

      Declaring it “done” was premature. I took a fresh run at it this morning and tried an entirely different reference track. (Leigh Nash, “Nervous in the Light of Dawn”.) Also found some edits and tweaks to try to help some weak spots.

      It’s almost 10pm on the 31st, and I feel like I really did everything I could on this. For my first truly finished product, I’m happy.

      (And Nimbit has the new file now, if anyone downloaded the previous version and thought, “This needs a little more work.”)


  100. Sal DiGuardia

    Hey Graham and TRR family!

    My song is is up at cdbaby!!! Scroll up in the comments on this thread for my previous post with my discoveries and link to a YouTube video I posted yesterday. Otherwise enjoy my new single “The Rhythm Is Gone” here:

    Enjoy the preview and please feel free to leave me some feedback.

    Thank you Graham for the challenge and everyone did a fantastic job!!! I’m truly blown away with everyone’s submissions!!! We have some serious talent in our midst!!!!

    All my best,


    • Sal DiGuardia

      Hey all,

      There’s an issue with my single on cdbaby but working to get it resolved. Hopefully will be working shortly. Keep checking. Or head over to my YouTube link. It’s not the final final and there’s a couple pops in the audio but it will give you the idea.

  101. HB Woodrose

    DID IT!

    First of all, thank you for the amazing content you put out. You are seriously an invaluable asset to the music community.

    The main take-aways from this for me are the following:
    1) Getting into the practice of focusing on the source audio from the start and committing to it. It surprisingly makes the mix process almost mix itself.
    2) SMALL adjustments. I used to go overboard a bit with EQ and Compression. Just a DB cut here and there makes such a difference without flattening the mix.

    Thanks again man! This was an awesome project 🙂

      • UJM

        Really a great tune Woodrose. But what the hell are you doing with every hit of the bass drum???! This ruins the song and makes it unhearable. Did you sidechain the mix bus with the kick? Remove that and you are good to go. Vocals could need some more width. Just my two cent 😉

    • Anthony Hunsche

      This is a great song man! I actually think the edm-style sidechaining fits the track well.

  102. Hannes Kaufmann

    Thank you very much Graham for the motivation!
    I would have never finished the song this month without your help. The hardest thing was getting it done in time, work’s busy.
    I just finished my song today, after a 4 hour mixing session and another hour fine tuning. My fastest mixing so far. I used all of what I’ve learned so far.

    Just created an account at Nimbit but couldn’t get my Paypal account confirmed in time…. after earning 1.11 USD last year with my music (yes, one dollar 11 cents), it’s worth a try.

    My new song for this month – which I really love how it turned out – is now online at
    I also put it into iTunes, Google and Amazon stores with Distrokid.

    I would be very happy about any feedback or advice.
    My can also hear my previous songs on soundcloud.

    • Jonny Nedwich

      Hey man, thought I’d return the favour and check your soundcloud page out. Riviera Rave is damn impressive, heaps of other cool stuff on there too, kinda makes me want to swap my guitar for a synth…

    • Pete M

      Thumbs up! Definately not my kind of music, but produced like this with lots of variations, I do like it. Great job!

      • Hannes Kaufmann

        Thank you both VERY much! I’m really happy you like it. We all like different musical styles. I think I couldn’t do guitar. Not well at least.
        I produce what I grew up with and always liked and I’m happy others like it too 🙂 I miss variations and sometimes melodic parts in nowadays electronic music.
        I really appreciate your feedback!!!

  103. Juni Devecais

    I finished it and finally released it on I posted a sample on soundcloud too 🙂

    Perhaps the most surprising thing out of the 30 day process, aside from actually being able to finish it on time, is that it turned out to be probably the best mix I’ve done in a long LONG time and even the arrangement and production was something to be proud of. I think the pressure of setting the time and date made me more focussed and determined.

    Thank you so much, Graham. I really needed this!

  104. Rolf

    Thank you very much Graham – for your very inspiring videos and other info.
    Unfortunately I have noticed this fantastic place only just today.
    But nevertheless I have recorded and uploaded a short track this month, which I want to share:
    Hopefully I can catch up and continue the following month with this inspiring challenge.

  105. Colin Tench

    Well I will put this music here but the site selling it adds (“Preview”) and also charge $560 for it. Ha ha!
    Released on 30th Jan 2016 but will be part of an album this year.
    Not exactly pop music but still needs mixing as everything does. I failed to complete a complex band piece in time for actual release but music is music eh?
    Thank you again Graham and also many on here who wrote very interesting comments as the month went along.

  106. Diccon Lee

    Great music everyone!!!

    This has been a deeply rewarding and enjoyable trip. So grateful to Graham for defining a reachable goal, then leading the way with thoughtful advice and encouragement. It feels very much like a hike through a forest that ends at a beautiful vista overlook, the smell and sound of the sea far below.

    Most surprising thing I learned? How good Toontrack software is!

  107. Blaise Moritz

    Thanks, Graham! The one month challenge was a great experience, and a great way to start the year. It’s amazing to see how many folks finished songs, which I look forward to checking out now that I’ve gotten mine posted just under the wire! It’s called “Down at the Lakeshore”, and I started from scratch, writing the main organ riff right after watching video 1 of 8!

    My biggest surprise was two-fold: first, I was surprised to find out how much better I’ve gotten over the past couple of years at using the gear I have–very much of this improvement due to your tips; but the second part was that I felt the “whole really was greater than the sum of the parts”. Following along with you through a more structured process than I typically use, I could see things that I thought I knew about having much more impact.

  108. Milton

    Hello I took the challenge and is upload now,
    One of the things that surprice me was the fact, the reality to make a full song in just one month I always spend to much time on my mixes and never be happy with the results and now I see myself doing a mix in less time and be happy with the Sound, another thing was discover Nimbit I didn´t now about this service and the best of all it´s easy to use and it´s free, great place to share music. well please try to listen my song it´s call “January”
    I hope you liked
    here´s the link

  109. Pete M

    I took the challenge and uploaded my song about one hour ago.

    Maybe not the best production ever, therefor a song I wanted the write for a couple of years but never came out. This month it did. Thanks again, Graham!

    Here’s where to find it:

    Hope you like it….

    • Pete M

      Somehow, the nimbit account doesn’t seem to be working (yet)!

      This where you can hear my song ‘This is me (straight from the heart)’:

      Didn’t think, I would make it. Looking back, it has been a hard and great journey.

      The three things I take with me from this challenge, is being focussed, being focussed and being focussed! Besides that, I think, everyone who participated in this challenge, wins (even those, who didn’t finish it, will have learned something from it).

      My song is plain guitarrock… I think ;-). A friend described it as ‘Countrymetal’!

      Now I will take my time and will listen to some of the other participants.

      Have fun 😀


      • Pete M

        Listened to about 15-20 songs. There is so much great music. I hope Graham finds a way, where all the songs are listed so it takes alittle less time to scroll through 300+ songs 🙂

          • Pete M

            Hi Juni,
            The song won’t play on nimbit. I uploaded it several times, but nimbit doesn’t want me ;-).

            Please try the bandcamp link. Somehow its a poor mp3 quality (in other words, I think it sucks…) although I uploaded a wave file.

            But anyway, thanks for your effort, trying to listen to my song.

            Have a wonderfull day!

    • Pete M

      Hi Chris,

      Why write only instrumental songs? You have a great voice.

      I like your song, especially the way it works up to a great Finale.

      Have a wonderfull day 🙂

  110. Nev

    Just got it loaded at

    Best tip: When you think you’ve got a balance, turn it right down and see what pops out. And the vocal tip of using compression and eq before you start mixing. And the bus processing. And… and… and…

    Thanks Graham. This has been great.

  111. Gabriele Tam

    thanks everybody for sharing your songs and creating an encouraging environment; that gives me enough confidence to do so as well:

    What really hit me straight in the face is this: by simply following this challenge, even someone like me, who usually never even gets to finish a song, can actually release one – in just one month… Thanks Graham

      • Hannes Kaufmann

        Thank you very much!!!! 🙂 I’m really happy you like it. I don’t know why it got this 80’s feeling, wasn’t intentional, but I really like how it turned out – and it reminds me of earlier days too 🙂

  112. John

    Hi Graham
    I did it! One song, one month… First time writing, recording and releasing a song, all in one month. Thanks for your teaching and inspiration. This has been on my bucket list for years, so to be honest, I have to say I am surprised that I was able to get something to the point where I was able to let it go. I am a painter, and one thing I learned there that rings true here is to not ‘pitter, patter, or putter’. Once it’s done, it’s done. Like you said in your previous emails, it’s not music unless it’s being heard by other people.
    Thanks again, this sure makes an EP seem not just possible but highly probable

  113. Sal DiGuardia

    Hey family,

    I’m still waiting for cdbaby to update my single so in the mean time if you want to listen and offer feedback I’m all ears… (Yes I did fix the organ in the mix)

    This process was incredible!!! Scroll up in the comments to see my mini-novel of discoveries.

    Thank you Graham for your heart to help us create better music! Everyone sounds amazing thanks to your direction.


  114. David A. Marks

    Burning the midnight oil! Song is finished. I already released the instrumental on Soundcloud. Finished up tracking my vocal. Making space in the mix to drop it in.

    Number 1 thing I realized is that I need to write my melody and lyrics before I start major production. For years I have done it the other way and I consistently end up with writers block when I try to add lyrics and melody.

    Some things are so obvious once you figure them out you wonder why it took so long.

  115. Ryan Neff

    This was actually a very fun and challenging project. I didn’t see this until Jan. 15 So it has been a whirlwind getting this complete.

    What I learned from this was at the times when I was not sure what to do next or how do something, I just jumped in and tried something. If it didn’t work out, I had a really good idea of how to come back and do it the next time. If it did work out, I just kept moving.

    Thanks for the challenge Graham. I appreciate all the time you spend helping others.

  116. Anthony Hunsche

    Last minute!

    Speaking of last minute, that’s the biggest surprise insight I had while doing this challenge and documenting it: that working up until the last minute did NOT help overall! Now, sure, there were a few obvious tweaks and things that needed changed at the later stages, but in general my ‘last minute’ mentality meant that I kept re-doing and re-editing things to fill up the time until the last minute arrived. This showed up worst in the days upon days of vocal takes way past the point of diminishing returns, and constantly fiddling with the mix as I went along. I honestly thing the song would’ve been just as good, or even better, if I’d either finished it as early as possible or worked on something else in the meantime.

    The challenge has been great, looking forward to having some extra time to listen to everyone’s finished songs now!
    Thanks again Graham!

  117. Gimbo Gavino

    I always learn so much with your videos, but the thing I took away from recording this song and going along with the challenge is that because of the lack of time I had to work on the song, I was forced to decide whether it was more important for me that I like the final product or that that the imaginary listeners that live in my head like the song and it’s production. In the end I decided that it is more important to make art and art is an expression rather than a product. This song is a product of my expression… Narf.

  118. Nick Jongejan

    Hey Graham!

    Thanks for the awesome videos and cool challange! It was hard because i had my exams the last few weeks but somehow i mannaged to do it. it was hard to focus on the lyrics beacause my mind was full with school stuff so the the lyrics came at the very end of the project wich is kind of strange for me. So on this one i worked kindo of backwards. I had recorded everything but still had to come up with lyrics. But I managed to do it and i am very proud of the result! so curious what you think about it:) link:

  119. Trevor

    After some nervous hesitation to upload my song, I finally went for it. This one is called “Thaw Me Out” and I took Graham’s suggestion to try Nimbit. Here’s the link:

    My biggest takeaway from this experience is that a community like the Recording Revolution is so important to motivating me to move forward and get my music out there. I can’t tweak forever and our songs ARE meant to be heard, flaws and all. Thanks to Graham and all of you guys for reminding me what music is – a living and ever changing expression of our darkest fears, greatest hopes and everything in between.

    I’ve been enjoying hearing all of your finished tracks and I hope you guys dig my tune. Cheers!

  120. L.J. David

    Graham, thanks for inspiring so many of us this month! I did follow through and in keeping with the one month deadline, just posted the new song on Bandcamp but also posted it for free listening on Soundcloud here:

    To answer your question about what I learned most is that there were two main things I learned:

    (1) I am never satisfied that a song is done, usually because it is never going to be perfect, but sometimes I just have to let a song “go” and move on to the next thing. By you setting a deadline, that happened here.

    (2) There are parts of the recording process that perhaps take longer than they should for me, things I can work on as I continue to grow in my writing and recording. While my song is far from perfect, I learned that I can perhaps make songs more complicated than necessary by writing or recording more parts or takes than I need, tracks that will get dropped in mixing anyway. It really reminds me of the merits of recording in the “old” days on analog when every take would destroy something.

    In any case, really appreciate all the leadership on this process and it’s wonderful to see that so many of us have created something new as a direct result of you setting the bar even higher for us. Thank you for that!

  121. Nico Aponte

    Hello! I have been watching your videos for about 2 years now, and they have helped me so much. Thank you for all you do. I did this challenge to help me make more music since i’m in college, and do not have much access to my instruments now. This challenge actually pushed me to completely finish the song this month, and i’m very with how it turned out. This song is going to be my first single for my first album which I want to make this year now! Hopefully I can continue to make one song a month! Here is my song,
    The style is different than what I usually write (Punk rock), but i’m very happy! If I could change anything it would be the guitar tone in the beginning, thank you!

  122. Nina Mazeo

    I finished my song in time, but only on the last minutes of the day.
    It was a very frustrating journey this January. Nothing happened the way I planned. Life got in the way most of the month and I got to the last week without even writing the song or having any ideas at all, but I had made the commitment to myself and I stuck with it.
    I ended up writing two songs, recording them almost completely, only to delete and start over. I just wasn’t happy with the sound, not really with the quality of the recording (I wasn’t expecting much, I have no experience, it wasn’t going to be great), but the sound just wasn’t something I was proud of or wanted to release, you know. It was very interesting experiencing that.
    I have been writing for quite some time, have a great number of songs written, but since I never made a proper recording or committed to releasing, I had never come into contact with that feeling. Suddenly, I was wondering “Does this sound represent me?”, and the answer was no.
    On the 31st, mid afternoon, I was still playing around trying to find something that could excite me. I found myself playing with sounds I had never even thought of, it was so interesting to me. The final result was something I could never have anticipated, and I am happy with it.
    It’s an instrumental track (to blame on my lateness, though I do like it that way, doesn’t sound incomplete to me), miles and miles away from any other song I have ever written. And I see myself continuing down that new path for the rest of this challenge, witch I plan to complete!
    It’s been so much fun, and I have learned so much about myself musically. This would never had happen if I had stayed in my bedroom writing songs and recording demos on my phone. It was great, as a writing exercise, and to discover myself as a talented and capable songwriter, but there is so much ahead now! I am super excited for February!

    Thanks Graham, for this amazing challenge. I can feel my life changing, it was exactly what I needed right now.
    And thanks everyone else who is participating, for inspiring me and making me feel embarrassed enough that I could not quit until I had my song done. I’ve listen to some of the songs you guys shared on twitter and, wow, there’s some real great stuff! 🙂


  123. David Baker/Cellar Rat Recoding

    Finally Finished, 7 pm Sunday night (Pacific Time) put in a last 7 hour push . Great exercise in dead lines.Song Just didn’t come together until the end. Hope its good . Thanks Gram !

    • Sal DiGuardia

      Tony!!! So. Sick. Seriously… Super tasty my man!! Vocals are so nice and just that kiss of toxic!!im so jealous man!!! When you get signed remember us little people

  124. Rune Brynsholmen

    Ok. I made it! Scary thing to acctualy release it, but you can find it at It’s called High Upon Your love.
    Biggest surprise? The hate/love feeling about the deadline :-). I’m not sure I consider this one as perfect as I want it to be and at the same time it feels good to let go and just know I have to consider it done. Tanks Graham for the challenge and the “kick in the butt”

    • Rune Brynsholmen

      And late as it is I don’t even know the name of my own song.
      It’s called “High on Your Glory”, not “love” Even though love is great 🙂

    • Mario Centurión

      Im from Paraguay so my song its in spanish but i think u will like it anyways guys!! cheers!!

      • Sal DiGuardia

        Mario!!! My wife and I were just listening and really enjoyed your song!!! Regardless of language music can reach beyond that barrier. You’ve got a bonfires hit man!!! Start shopping to radio

  125. Jairo

    Completed! This was such a great learning experience. I have learned so much in putting all the skills to practice, and figuring out what my workflow is going to be for future songs. I think the most challenging part of this challenge is coming up with a song name!

    I basically did the entire song in one day. I rerecorded all the guitar parts, recorded bass, mixed, mastered, then created the artwork. The drums were recorded over the course of the month. It helps me to build out the rhythm section first, using scratch guitar tracks to build out the structure.

    This is an instrumental piece. I am not a vocalist, but I will need to practice recording and mixing vocals, so at some point I will just have to do it. For now, here is my submission for January.

  126. Dino De Angelis

    Thanks Graham for waking up the procrastinating songwriter/musician/producer in me (and many of us) with this challenge! Its nice to know that it can be done in one month, even with a busy schedule, if you just set this one song one month as your goal. For me, the idea generation, and recording was fast enough but the difficult part came with the mixing – I wanted a slightly more rocking song than usual for me, but I also wanted acoustic guitar to play a big role in it (I don’t know, I must have been thinking about Spiders-era Bowie a lot around the middle of the month…) So I took quite some time to look for the right balance between the acoustic and electric guitar tracks…I’ve posted the song on my new page at
    Your youtube videos have been so helpful …thanks for demystifying the tools of the trade and nudging us shepherd like towards the goal (hey, kind of like your song’s lyrics, from excerpts I heard throughout this month’s series). Thanks!

    • Pete M

      Hi Dino,

      This is a great song with a great sound to it. On my speakers, your voice seems to be a little to much in the background, which I think is a pity. But then again, it may be my speakersystem.

      Have a great day!

      • Dino De Angelis

        Hi Pete – Thanks for the kind words… I had printed a couple of versions of the song, with slightly different balances (vox up/down, bass up/down). Today with my ears reset and fresh I hear exactly what you are saying, so I reposted a version with more vox. Not being a singer, I am self-conscious about my voice, so whenever I have the choice I tend to bury it for better or worse! Any singers out there that want to collaborate, I am open for business! Or musicians for that matter, this community is unbelievable!

        • Pete M

          Good morning Dino,

          What a great track. It brings me in a feel-good-mood even though the lyrics suggest something different (desparation?).

          Your voice fits perfect to the song. I like the hit on the ride after the first chorus, such an understatement to the song and so in place with the guys feelings (in my humble opinion). The organ-(or synthie-)solo sounds so funny.

          You see, I really listened to the song.

          The idea of collaborating with musicians from this community also popped into my mind before. But when I listen to guys like you,who make professional productions, my contribution to an external production would be a poor one since my recording/audio-engineering skills are not that good(yet).

          Have a wonderfull day

  127. Josh Maitland

    I’ve always liked bandcamp for releases, though the interface for Nimbit seems pretty cool – If I wasn’t already setup with BC I probably would have tried it.

    Here’s our tune-of-the-month (hoping to make a habit of this!)

    It’s an ambient folk/psychedelic rock tune, called “Ghosts of the Gone”

    We are planning to pitch it to the Walking Dead 😉

    • Jim H

      I’m with you on that; taylor made for Walking Dead. Hair stood up on my neck. Nice job!

  128. Timothy Mendoza

    Thanks again Graham for the homework assignment. I have learned a lot from your videos, but this challenge taught me much more than expected. You really can make great music with inexpensive gear. Also, time deadlines force us to focus on creativity instead of process. for those of you who are interested, here’s my song.

  129. James Khan

    Hey Graham,
    Thank you so much for this challenge! It has really kick started me into finishing and RELEASING work! I’ graduated from recording school in August and I’ve had a rough slog since and have always been hesitant to release work. Links are at the end of my comment!

    I gained so much from your blog and youtube channel. This channel got me off my ass about joining SOCAN (the Canadian ASCAP) and joining Bandcamp. Two things I needed to do for my career in general! I started the challenge mid January after writing a song in an afternoon saw the youtube vid on the monday and I immediately set myself to work on my newfound quest

    I record heavy metal and I don’t have a band. I’m the songwriter, producer, artist, recording engineer, mix engineer and mastering engineer. Hell, I’m also the intern that gets coffee. Doing it all on my is so tiring and all of my musician/engineer friends always seem to let me down when I need them. I decided early in the month to get an EP done in the next two months release it and try to find a label to support me. I decided to go on my own with it. It also always seems to be harder to record and mix metal than anything else I’ve worked on because of the extremes and the density of things. I do not pretend to be a vocalist and this has forced me to work on my voice more (I do the growling heavy thing not real singing). I used the simplifying the verse technique you showed in one vid and even though I’m a guitar player that hates my own voice, I forced myself to put the vocals as the star except during the obligatory guitar solo.

    I worked hard on the arrangement and wrote lyrics based on my last breakup (wasn’t pretty but she was) . I used guitar pro to write the parts in midi and create my tempo map that I later imported into protools. For guitars, I used my 3 marshall heads going into 3 marshall cabs, into 3 close mics (one on each cab, a 57, 58 and icore 100), a mid side pair 1 metre away of an at2020 and apex460 tube mic, a pair of at2021 ones 3 metres away in ORTF and then a dry digital stereo source of my Line 6 pod X3, also a clean DI to make edits easier. All of this into my Allen & Heath 32 channel GS3V console into my digidesign 002. I group the close and digital sources into one group and use the remaining six 002 channels for my 4 room mics and ORTF pair. Vocals I used the same MS pair and ORTF pair and for bass I used my DI. Drums were made using guitar pro for the patterns I programmed and in protools I used addictive drums. I love 80’s metal and I always try to make everything as big as possible! Again thank you for this so much and for everything else too!

    here is the song on bandcamp
    here’s the song on soundcloud

    It’s still very rushed but please do try to consider it for the winning entry. Even if I don’t win the presonus bundle, I still win because I released a song, “perfected” my guitar and vocal recording techniques and most importantly joined SOCAN and bandcamp. Thank you if you read this through to the end.

  130. Will Robinson

    I made it just under the wire- wrote a song from scratch starting on 1/1/16 and uploaded it to Nimbit around midnight, 1/31/16. It’s been a great experience in that I was forced by the deadline to keep moving and open my ears, to not dwell on minutia and rely more on instinct. I definitely have learned a lot about my personal obstacles to production and how I might begin to overcome them. In the process, I discovered some shortcuts and discarded some burdensome habits. I’m still not 100% pleased with the mix or the arrangement, but all I expected to take away from this is the experience. Thanks for the motivation, Graham! Here’s my song:

    and my new Nimbit page:

  131. Paul Woodard

    I finished the challenge, and ignited the passion to finally do at least an EP release this year. It was great to have a deadline, and also see so many others committing to finishing. I tried the challenge the last time you did it, and just didnt finish. Proud of myself for finishing. I learned that you dont need all kinds of sweet gear but you NEED TO LEARN WHAT YOU HAVE FIRST before getting more! I learned to listen more too, to try and understand what I heard, vs just getting a track down.

  132. WalterMelons

    hardest part of this is just putting it out there.
    to be rated
    to be judged
    to be put under the magnifying glass… ouch.

  133. Matt Norton

    Some good thoughts on listing our songs. You should always gather emails for both free and paying customers so you can market your next project to them. If they buy once there is a good chance they will buy again. It is always cheeper to market to returning customers especially if you capture their info at time of sale.

    I think the real chalange is promoting the single/abum. It is not enouph to just simply upload to iTunes or your storefront. Even if you have an email fan list you still have to get them to listen to the new song enouph times to decide they have to have it.

    I read it takes an average of seven listens before an individual will be motivated to buy your song. If you are in heavy rotation on radio that is not much of an issue. Playing live can certainly help. But for the primary online musician (which I am guessing is many of us), We need highly targeted and creative ways to get our songs stuck in people’s heads.

    So how does the average struggling musician cost-effectively and creatively promote their song to their mailing list and the rest of the world?

    For a lot off us we spend all of our time recording, then upload our song to our storefronts and youtube, send out a single email blast to our fan base and move on to the next song while the first one just sits collecting dust. Traditional record companies will often spend anywhere from 3 months to two years promoting an album and all of its radio singles. The average indi musician probably doesn’t spend anywhere nearly enouph time or resources on marketing thus missing out on hundreds of dollars in potential sales and/or new fans. Forget that shinny new plug-In, its useless if no one appreciates our song.

    That is all assuming that you have a good song of course. Some good ideas for testing our songs to see if they are worth investing in would be nice.

    If you could do an in depth series on promotion for the poor musician that would be much appreciated. I would like to think that once you have put out good music of value and found how to target your audience that you could determine a formula: if you put x amount of dollars in, you will get x amount of dollars out. At least that is how much of traditional online sales is done.

  134. Paul Goldo

    Hello everyone,

    This was a fun challenge, but also an emotionally difficult one for me personally. In the beginning of January my dad passed away, so there was a lot of grief and emotional upheaval to contend with. My dad was 96, so he had a good long life, but it’s always sad and crushing when someone you love passes on.

    I don’t want to bum anyone out, but, this actually informed the song that I did this month. I’m always working on songs and trying to find them in the oddest places, from people you wouldn’t expect. For the song this month, it actually features my mom and dad, both in their 90’s saying “this old age is the pits…this old age sucks…” I thought it was funny at the time, so I recorded them on my phone. Then the you know what hit the fan…

    But, thanks God for music…because it gave me a distraction from my grief and also a strange way to honor my dad. I ended up making a song around their vocals, which make up the CH.

    Here is the link. I hope it puts a smile on your hears…or something…

    All the best,


  135. Chris

    I pulled an all nighter getting it done, (another reason to appreciate deadlines) and have been waiting for the message in my inbox that I thought was supposed to come yesterday to say how to submit. I so hope I didn’t miss something. Regardless, i wanted to get it out somehow as I am really happy I was pushed into completing it.

  136. Terry Davis

    Well, after a lot of listening, tweaking, and recent late nights (smile), I finally got my song completed for the challenge. Taking on the challenge was good for me and it pushed me to make the deadline.

    Here’s the link for my song “Nothing Shall Separate Me.”

    Hope you enjoy the music and message.



  137. Josh Smith

    The one month challenge was a lot of fun! I wasn’t sure if I’d finish in time, but I learned a lot along the way.

    • Jim H

      Great track man! I hear a little Robin Trower in there. So many good tracks here .. forget the radio.

    • None To Late

      Awesome, Awesome, Awesome!!! Love the groove, vibe n mix. Sounds like a souped-up Rival Sons! Great Job!

  138. Mark Horton

    I see this challenge resulted in a lot of good songs being created! The biggest surprise for me was that I was actually more creative with a deadline. I couldn’t waste my normal amount of time trying to perfect things I can’t perfect. Thanks for doing this, Graham, you’ve inspired us again!

  139. Graham Argus

    Hi Graham,
    Well I managed to finish a song!! First attempt at mixing…
    All I have ever managed was to get a guitar track down and a vocal and there it would sit – till I could get the time to try again … But then having re- learn how I got up to that point again on my daw.

    Thanks so much for your tips… Though I have a looong way to go in mixing
    But this made me get in and just do it!

    My attempt here . Song , Talk so good

    This is scary, be gentle 🙂

  140. Joe Byerly

    Hey everyone! Here is my contribution.

    The past few weeks have been a really cool time for my friends and I as we have worked on this song from three different time zones and two different continents. We wanted to see what we could do from opposite sides of the planet, and the link above is the final result of recording our first song, a cover of one our favorites. I’m so thankful and excited to listen to what others have posted here in what is such a healthy learning environment. Thank you for this challenge, Graham. It has become more than just about creating music with the intention of starting and finishing a process; old childhood friends have been able to reconnect over a common love for making music and we thank you for giving us a firm footing to start creating more often and with more confidence than ever before.

    The biggest surprise came when I slapped a multiband compressor on the whole thing at the end of the process. It was like the whole song had sparked to life somehow, and being that I am my own worst critic, I was able to sit back and listen to the song for the first time not thinking and analyzing…..I just enjoyed it. I want to take that attitude, follow it as we continue to write and record and produce our musical ideas in the pipeline.

    If anyone has tips, questions, ideas on how we could improve on the song, or ideas for how we can do better work in the future, please don’t hesitate to reply.


    • Mark Horton

      Good work! It’s one of the best mixes I’ve heard on here and everything sounds professional to me. I checked out the original song and it seems to have more presence (especially the vocal), but before comparing I didn’t ever think yours sounded dull. I’ll be interested to hear what you do next!

      • Joe Byerly

        Wow, Mark! Very encouraging words, thank you so much. I have been wrestling with presence in recording and I feel like I’m slowly working my way there. It was in doing this cover that I FINALLY found the right (or at least closer) EQ for my voice, and now I’m searching for how to bring it more up front. It helps so much to have other ears listening!! Thanks again!!

        • Mark Horton

          You’re welcome! I thought your vocal sounded natural and sat fine in the mix, but maybe just slightly more high-end shelf could do the trick. I don’t do vocals much, but when I do I always struggle with them.

    • Andy Harper

      Nice recording and excellent collaboration Joe – big achievement!
      I’m a big fan of multiband compression on the mix buss – the trick is less is more, very, very subtle but it gives the music a beautiful lift. I use the stock plugin in Cubase 8.5 Pro.
      Cheers, Andy

      • Joe

        Andy, thank you for the encouragement!! Honestly, I kept feeling something was missing, and couldn’t tell what it needed. I tried a variety of things and hit upon what I think is a very cool and relatively simple flourish, if you will. Thank you again!

  141. Valence

    I almost thought I wouldn’t have any song at the end of the month. I got stumped on finding a hook for a long while and work and other responsibilities got in the way. What I found though is that time-pressure forced me to create something as the month progressed and I was able to carve out some time and create a song. I know it isn’t perfect and I’d love to get some feedback.

    I’ve posted the link to the song below

    Thanks for this challenge, all the advice and all the support Graham.

    • Mark Horton

      I think your song is really good! The mix isn’t bad either. You spaced everything nicely and had some neat vocal harmonies. Since you asked for some feedback, here’s my advice: always make sure instruments are in tune with each other – the guitar was slightly out of tune with everything else, which didn’t sound great. The vocal was also slightly pitchy and sounded a little thin/mid-rangy and dry. Those were the main things I noticed. Hopefully you find it helpful!

  142. Andy Harper

    Brilliant Graham!
    Here’s my track:

    Here’s what I learnt…

    Commit, persist and complete. It is achievable.
    I wrote, performed, recorded and mixed my song in 4 days. I would say 16 hours in total.
    Most of my time was spent re-recording guitar and vocal parts – not my forte

    One regret is that I didn’t resolve the de-esser issue….but here’s to next time.
    Many thanks from Andy, hot and sunny Western Australia

  143. Chris Lloyd

    Hi everyone, just been listening to some of the tracks mentioned in the comments and damn! people got it going on! So much passion! Here is my track, I hope you enjoy it as much as I have enjoyed yours 🙂 and remember, we’re only just getting started!!! This is the first track I have ever completed and published so hopefully it doesn’t make your ears bleed lol

  144. Chris Lloyd

    Hi everyone, Ive been listening to the tracks that people have been posting and wow, people have real talent! I did post earlier but my phone is a bit crap haha annnnnyway look how many of us have achieved something in such a short amount of time, this is the first time I have completed a track from start to finish and published it and I now realise the importance of completing tracks if you want to get better yet we never think the stuff we create is good enough, well i think this challenge has proved otherwise! this is a great start musically for us all and i look forward to what we will all achieve going forward! 🙂

    Here is the link to my track, hopefully it doesn’t make your ears bleed haha!

  145. None To Late

    My buddy and I took the challenge. Whew! Our biggest surprise is that we actually accomplished this. We both have families and full time jobs while I (Dave) was also finishing my Bachelors in Business Management. I did have the pleasure of being a member of Dueling Mixes this past summer (2015) and this series featured with the tutorial videos from dueling mixes is invaluable! Here is our tune on our Nimbit store. Thanks Graham, great challenge to get us moving!

  146. Kevin

    This was an awesome challenge. I technically finished in less than 2 weeks, but its because I decided to change pieces halfway through the process haha. Hope you guys enjoy. Would love some feedback. This was a fun piece for me, because it started as a stripped down acoustic song and we turned it into modern pop meets vintage rock production. It was really fun to be creative to capture most of the tone for this piece at the source. The drums are the product of a happy accident haha…I had an 8 mic set up, but I only ended up using the Kick, Snare, and Hat mics because it just worked with no eq or compression. I did use samples that I created from the kit at the session and a couple from THAT SOUND Cinematic Pop library to help add some punch and clarity, but I’d say 80% of the sound is just the 3 mics…BTW it was a AKGp170 on the hat, a 57 snare, and cheap CAD kick mic going into behringer midas design mic pres. So obviously Im a huge believer in the fact that its how you use your gear and not how expensive the gear is. 🙂

  147. Darcy Jeavons

    Hi all! A little after the final week, but I wrote, recorded, produced, mixed, and mastered this in 26 days! There is great motivation to use all I have learned about mixing/production for an awesome cause: An 8 year old little boy with Cerebral Palsy who loves music! Doing this in one month is sooooo possible when you put your mind AND your heart to it! Please take a listen:) And thanks, Graham, for all you teach — I am a loyal follower!



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