From The Beatles to David Bowie to Beyonce, most music recorded over the past seventy years has made use of effects to enhance our favorite songs. Thanks to modern computing power and the advent of effects plugins, there is a virtually unending supply of effects available for use in the music production process. In this article, I’ll cover what I consider to be five of the most popular and important effects commonly used in modern music production. Once you have an understanding of these effects, you can take your raw tracks to the next level during the arrangement or mixing phase of your creative process. In the followup article to this primer, I will get to specific plugin brands I like, and some of my favorite plugins for each of the effects discussed below. For now, let’s dive right in and get acquainted with some of the basics.