The thing about Top 40 music is that it has to be easily digestible to be successful. Usually, it can’t be anything too complex — simple, singable melodies, accompanied by very logical chord changes. As it turns out, this makes pop a great place to start learning about theory and expand your harmonic knowledge.

I use a really small ratio of around 1.5 to 1. This means that once my audio passes the threshold I’ve set, there is very little compression happening to that audio. It’s just a little bit. I’m not trying to squash the life out of it. You can experiment with a little bit higher of a ratio, but know that the lower the ratio the less compression (more dynamics), and the higher the ratio the more compression (less dynamics).

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