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jimdrake
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Joined: 29/10/02
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getting bands to turn down their amps
      #57010 - 02/12/04 03:41 AM
I spend quite some time doing sound at the student union at my university for live band nights and things of that nature. we have a lot of very good kit and a pa that is of a suitable power rating for the venue, although the shape of the room is not ideal.

however, we always have problems with loud guitar amps. the height of the stage means that the cabs tend to point straight at the audience's ears. they are rarely quiet enough as to need reinforcement by the pa.

when we ask the bands to turn down their amps we are always told that the sound is different at lower volumes and that they like the sound at higher levels. this is the typical response you get from a guitarist but i have yet to be shown that this is true.

is there anyone out there with more expereince that has found a solution to this problem?

i think it would be best to have a rack full of pod type boxes. we could say to the bands that they cannot use their amps on stage during the gig but they can set them up just to look cool. we can spend as much time as they want tweaking the pods to make it sound as close to their favourite amp as possible. would this persuade the bands with the biggest egos?


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alan elliot
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Joined: 26/03/04
Posts: 113
Re: getting bands to turn down their amps new [Re: jimdrake]
      #57017 - 02/12/04 04:45 AM
One option is to use a power soak.
power soak
These devices work by placing a series of resistors between the output of a high-level (100-W) tube amp and a speaker cabinet, which "soaks up" an amp's output - though it can still be pinned at maximum volume, for full distortion effect. Thus you get the great sound with a lower volume.
Using the Pods is a viable alternative but you'll need good monitoring for the band. I Engineer for a band that uses Pods live and they sound great, plus with the Sound diver software you can get some really cool f**ked up sounds.
Cheers
Alan


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Octopussy



Joined: 01/09/04
Posts: 562
Loc: Melbourneo
Re: getting bands to turn down their amps new [Re: jimdrake]
      #57018 - 02/12/04 04:47 AM
If someone said that I had to use a POD then I wouldn't play there!

Musicians need to work in the zone that lets them perform. As soon as you start messing with their amps then they will be worried! How many venues have I played where the sound engineer wants to get the band on without making the stage area give adiquate info to the band members. All they want is to mix FOH. Do you even know what it's like to play a gig as a three piece and not be able to hear the guitars or vocals! What is it like on stage left i.e. can you hear the other band members across the other side of a drumkit?

Good live sound engineers are rare! POD's!!! You numb nuts!

Insted why don't you build safe and stable platforms to raise the speakerboxes to ear height for the amped up musos?
Alternatively you could instist on putting quad boxes and the like off-stage and run a mic from there. Do you even have monitors?

I tell you, I've played venues where all the treble disappears from the stage area. Now as a bassist it feels like all the articulation and attack from your fingers has gone! On top of this the energy of the sound for the band is missing and you feel tired and you overplay i.e. dig in to your instrument too much. Insted of interfereing with musos using PODs try to focus on the on stage sound for a good performance and make the stage area work for the musicians!

As soon as my main band can afford it we'll train someone up to replace guys like you at venues for damn sure!

Regards,
bassdude


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Guy Johnson



Joined: 02/05/03
Posts: 4287
Loc: North Pembrokeshire
Re: getting bands to turn down their amps new [Re: jimdrake]
      #57126 - 02/12/04 11:01 AM
Yes. Point the cabs at the players. Then they get the screechy trebly gunk that the audience normally gets (that the guitarist can't hear)

Bassdude, Jimdrake was only trying to sort sounds out, without realising that amps are part of the instument. Seems like he wants good sound, and there are many bands with ludicrous levels on the amps, so it's then impossible to get any balance at at all!

But loads of bands will turn down, if you point out that OK, you may sacrifice your individual sound a bit, but the music and the band will come across much better, if the amp is quieter.

It all comes down to the band and engineer trusting one another.

G

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jimdrake
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Re: getting bands to turn down their amps new [Re: jimdrake]
      #57399 - 02/12/04 06:35 PM
bassdude, that is exactly the attitude we are often faced with.

i understand the point about wanting to fiddle with the band's amps and how this may put them off. the point i was making was how to offer this system in a way that could persuade them of the huge benefits. alan points out that he has used this method and is pleased with the sound.

the power soak could be a good thing to try, however, not all bands turn up with separate amp head and cab systems.

your post is insulting in many ways.

it implies that i have no knowledge of what it is like to play in a band. in fact i have been playing drums and percussion for about 6-7 years and have played in a variety of different groups from symphony orchestras and jazz bands to death metal style rock noise bands. i have a grade 5 music theory and grade 8 performance under my belt if you want to be picky. i have played in many venues with little to no monitoring and a crap (~500w) pa.

you also imply that myself and the friends i work with are poor sound engineers. most of the sound engineers (including me) working at the union are on a music and sound recording course that is regarded by very high standards throughout the music industry. we run many events both at the union and at outside gigs, and have a huge amount of experience between all of us. for more info check here: http://ussu-crew.co.uk/ (this site looks crap and is out of date but has some useful info on)

you also imply that the equipment we use is not good enough (less of an insult, but you know what i mean.)

we always run sparate monitor and foh mixes for big gigs.

for monitors we have a 40ch soundcraft mh3 desk. normally we run 3-4 pairs of monitors as well as a drum fill. all run with active crossovers. i'm not sure about the power rating but i would guess about 500-1000w per each monitor pair and around 1kw for the drum fill. i don't know the specs so i may be wrong.

for foh we run a similar spec yamaha desk with a renkus heinz pa. each stack for the pa uses a box with 2 high, 2 mid and 2 low drivers and a box with 2 sub drivers. all run with active crossovers. we have three of these stacks each side of the stage. again, i would guess around 8-10kw for the total power rating.

although the raised/angled guitar cabs are a good idea, the point i was trying to make more was the COMMUNICATION of the idea with the bands. Guy Johnson said that 'loads of bands will turn down, if you point out that OK, you may sacrifice your individual sound a bit, but the music and the band will come across much better, if the amp is quieter.'

this is more of the point that i was making, in that, in my experience this is not true.


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Octopussy



Joined: 01/09/04
Posts: 562
Loc: Melbourneo
Re: getting bands to turn down their amps new [Re: jimdrake]
      #57465 - 02/12/04 09:03 PM
Hi jimdrake,

Sorry for venting but the POD thing suggested that you aren't very empathic with musicians. I've had countless gigs where the soundguy is trying to prove their worth by either coming across all authoritarian, bullying or trying to be a member of the band. So often the scenario with these little Hitler’s is that a musicians experiences colour his gigging set up. If you interfere with how a muso pulls through a gig that has an awful stage environment with poor on stage acoustics and no care given by the SE for setting up any monitoring then this is how musos get over that situation. No just through inexperience but through gigs where they've had no alternative but to crank things up to get the part of their sound that allows them to articulate on the instrument.

Guy Johnson made the point about the amp being a part of the instrument. This is a fundamental thing. Hey Mark Knopfler I don't want you to use that Soldano amp ere plug into my POD we'll approximate your tone with that etc etc.

To put it in drum terms... imagine saying to a drummer those cymbals are a bit piercing so I want you to use these Roland V cymbals instead! Or I don't want you to tune your toms to the room but instead I'll attach some triggers to your kit and use an Alesis DM4!

As for the power soak thing... they are quite expensive, so what would you do with a 2 or 3 guitar band?

Here in Melbourne there are sound engineers all over the place. SAE and other places are churning them out. And for the most part even the ones who are trained for the live side of things all want to go for the glory of FOH without taking the time to get the stage happening. I was speaking strongly to you to make things stick in your head!

As a muso I want to replace guys like you because they...

Don't know what my band wishes are in terms of presenting their sound ie getting the kind of mix we want.

They suggest PODs!

They make you compromise your performance by not looking after the stage environment enough or changing thing that work for me to suit themselves.

Their egos extend beyond making the PA work for the room and think they are artistically creating a FOH mix... to their own aesthetic idea. De-emphasising elements in the sound that are fundamental to the individual musos enjoyment of the sound and performance as agree upon by the band.

I could go on and on. There are many soundguys out there who have no empathy with musos even when they are or have been a player themselves. Different hats making them forgetful or insensitive to the needs of all the instruments apart from the ones they’ve put a little thought into.

How many god dam gigs do I have to do where there is no set up time and I'm playing from memory as the sound engineer doesn't realise that the musicians can hear nothing on the stage especially outdoors but in some pubs and clubs also. I've literally had to watch the singers foot and play from memory and watch their hands and mouth for any clue whatsoever.

I've played gigs where the FOH mix was wonderful and people come up to me afterwards and say how much they loved the gig but because of the stage environment there has been no joy in it for me at all. Robbed by the F'in SE off all joy of playing.

I personally have my cab not too loud and at ear height at every gig I do. But sometimes I've lost the beginning of the gig due to poor stage environment and had to step back to my cab because some numb nuts SE is messing around and forgot to put the monitors right. I'm coming out from a DI to FOH and I'm getting no guitarist/singer on the other side of the drums and meanwhile I'm back at my amp and guessing the cues. At this point the enjoyment and relaxation are gone! It takes ages to get back into the zone and I've had to move out of the spotlight. I'm in a 3 piece! What is that like for the audience! What’s it like when say a pillar blocks the view of the singer and the bass player is out of the lights near his amp! Do things seem like a show now! Or have the audience got a first impression of introverted boars.

I think most live SE should be marched off premises. The incompetence is almost constant. Good live SE's are very rare let alone beginners on some course.

Rather than being offended try and have a good think about empathising with the F'ing musos up there performing. Make things right for them above FOH and your own jollies. If everything is set-up for muso enjoyment and performance then the rest can be prioritised second.

Regards,
bassdude


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Guy Johnson



Joined: 02/05/03
Posts: 4287
Loc: North Pembrokeshire
Re: getting bands to turn down their amps new [Re: jimdrake]
      #57540 - 02/12/04 11:50 PM
. . . I never willingly admit I'm an engineer, to any nice new musos I meet - because there are so many bad ones. Not much comfort that there are loads of bad bands!

G

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Octopussy



Joined: 01/09/04
Posts: 562
Loc: Melbourneo
Re: getting bands to turn down their amps new [Re: Guy Johnson]
      #57611 - 03/12/04 09:13 AM
You are right about the bad bands thing Guy. They're everywhere!

As for live SE's I am always polite to their faces! But you know it's nothing against the person even if he/she is not to competent. Face to face you always have to kiss arse if you want good things said about you at the venue so that it gets back to the booker!

But in cyberspace I can be candid. I truly hope that the message gets across from what I've said. It's amazing how a SE can rob a muso of enjoyment in their performance. I actually use to rent out my PA back when I lived in the UK. I was a live sound SE. Except I put the musicians first which leads to better performances. It's a good feeling to have the band come up to you and say they loved the stage environment and then their cronies in the audience come up AND compliment on FOH as well.

I think these live SE courses should have the motto of the course as
"FOH aint the be all and end all."

The live sound engineer hasn't gone to rehearsals and does not interact with the performers, doesn't write the songs nor make any development in the arrangements. He will never be part of the band. He can't take any credit for the performance other than not being a hindrance! His FOH mix isn't necessarily how the band would like to sound and all they really have to do is have the PA set-up properly and do a competent mix. It's not rocket science. You don't need to talk to musicians about the room characteristics to prove something to them! If you do what I've suggested then you will be sincerely thanked and given respect by the performers unless they've got no manners!

Regards,
bassdude

PS bands usually have experienced playing in more rooms than the SE has experienced! Just a thought.


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John G
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Joined: 13/11/01
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Re: getting bands to turn down their amps new [Re: Octopussy]
      #57669 - 03/12/04 11:10 AM
Bassdude - you are talking [ ****** ]. As we are in cyberspace, I’ll be candid also.

Before I go on - I am a full time sound engineer and about 60-70% of my work is live. The rest recorded. I am also a trained musician with a 1st Class Bmus Hons, and played in professional bands for much of my earlier life. I feel I have an insight into both sides.

Firstly - I agree that courses are churning out loads of crap sound engineers. A whole other topic covered many times. What I will add is that they don’t stay working for very long though.

I have read over this forum carefully, and written some replies to your stuff. This isn’t personal, but I want to defend sound engineers against some of your rash comments.

Post 1:

”Someone said that I had to use a POD then I wouldn't play there! “

Good call. No musician should be asked to change their setup by an engineer. The amp is part of the integral sound of a musician’s instrument. Day one stuff.

If musicians are using a POD already – GREAT. They do make life very easy and reduce stage noise.
I heard about one gig where the entire band was on PODS and DI’s and using in ear monitoring. Stage noise was zero! But that is the musician’s choice.

“How many venues have I played where the sound engineer wants to get the band on without making the stage area give adiquate info to the band members. “

How many gigs have I engineered where I receive NO tech specs from the band or management in advance, and the band turn up late?! You get the Rider – 20 cans of stella, four hot meals, payment by cheque on the night, etc. But no stage plot, mic list – nothing. It works both ways.

At my regular venue I always make a point of:

1) Contacting the band or management in advance to check the specs and arrival time, so I can rig the pa and place mics in advance. I even set a monitor mix and EQ the wedges roughly to those positions if possible.
2) I always personally show the band to their dressing rooms, where their empties should go, etc.
3) Check they have all they need. Tea, coffee, etc. Simple things.

I am not the only engineer I know who does this of course.

“All they want is to mix FOH. Do you even know what it's like to play a gig as a three piece and not be able to hear the guitars or vocals! What is it like on stage left i.e. can you hear the other band members across the other side of a drumkit? Good live sound engineers are rare! “

I see your point. From what you say it sounds like you are doing small gigs without a separate monitor desk and engineer. When I do monitors from FOH, the mix on stage is always as important as out front. I pride myself on this. I spend 70% of sound check times working with the band without anything coming out front just to get stage noise. I can throw a FOH mix together in one song once the band is happy, but I keep in mind that when sound is coming out front things change on stage again.

Post 2:

“To put it in drum terms... imagine saying to a drummer those cymbals are a bit piercing so I want you to use these Roland V cymbals instead! Or I don't want you to tune your toms to the room but instead I'll attach some triggers to your kit and use an Alesis DM4!”

I think this a great example why a sound engineer should not tell the musician what instruments to be using.

”As for the power soak thing... they are quite expensive, so what would you do with a 2 or 3 guitar band?”

Another good point. Expense is always an issue. The other solutions mentioned here are more viable.

”Here in Melbourne there are sound engineers all over the place. SAE and other places are churning them out. And for the most part even the ones who are trained for the live side of things all want to go for the glory of FOH without taking the time to get the stage happening.”

This is a shame. What is more of a shame is that you are coming across these guys working in venues.

I worked my way up on work experience from age sixteen, crewing on stage at festivals for sixteen hour + days. I learnt more in one day of work experience than I did in three years on a degree that had an ‘engineering element to it’. I didn’t touch a decent console for two years apart from tipping it onto a stand.

”I could go on and on. There are many soundguys out there who have no empathy with musos even when they are or have been a player themselves. Different hats making them forgetful or insensitive to the needs of all the instruments apart from the ones they’ve put a little thought into.

How many god dam gigs do I have to do where there is no set up time and I'm playing from memory as the sound engineer doesn't realise that the musicians can hear nothing on the stage especially outdoors but in some pubs and clubs also. I've literally had to watch the singers foot and play from memory and watch their hands and mouth for any clue whatsoever. “


Seriously - If you are having these problems you should be touring with your own engineer. See below.

”I think most live SE should be marched off premises. The incompetence is almost constant. Good live SE's are very rare let alone beginners on some course.”

No. March the sound engineers of the premises and you will sound [ ****** ] out front as well as on stage. What a stupid comment.

”Rather than being offended try and have a good think about empathising with the F'ing musos up there performing. Make things right for them above FOH and your own jollies. If everything is set-up for muso enjoyment and performance then the rest can be prioritised second.”

How could I not be offended?! Well, I'm not offended actually. Just frustrated by your ignorance. You statements are so sweeping and throw all SE’s in together. But I am not as offended at this point yet as by your next comments.

“The live sound engineer hasn't gone to rehearsals and does not interact with the performers, doesn't write the songs nor make any development in the arrangements. He will never be part of the band. “

How inexperienced as a working musician you are beginning to sound.

Bands who tour with their own engineer tend to consider the engineer in the opposite way to that you describe. In fact, one band I tour with will often announce to the audience the FOH engineer as “our sixth member”.

All signed professional bands (with few exceptions) tour with there own engineers. Often the engineer that may have worked with them in the studio – developing arrangements, effects, mixes. They know how the band sound and their input is often a characteristic of the bands sound – and many feel as artistically important.

Professional touring bands may rehearse with their engineer. And an engineer does interact with performers – particularly why you have a monitor engineer for that specific purpose!!!

“He can't take any credit for the performance other than not being a hindrance! “

Bollocks. If the monitor engineer makes you feel comfortable and sound good on stage, you will perform better.

"His FOH mix isn't necessarily how the band would like to sound and all they really have to do is have the PA set-up properly and do a competent mix. It's not rocket science.

It is not as simple as you make it sound. Live sound (IMO) is slightly more difficult in some respects to recorded as there are major room elements to contend with, and stage noise... etc. Sometimes acheiving a decent mix can be difficult if the PA is rubbish as well. My main advice to you is take your own engineer with you.

“PS bands usually have experienced playing in more rooms than the SE has experienced! Just a thought.”

You cannot really believe that, can you? I can do seven sound gigs a week - sometimes more. How many gigs do you play a week? You have experienced playing many rooms – not listening to more rooms. You haven't had to solve issues with uneven bass response caused by standing waves, or whatever. All you have to worry about is whether it sound good to you. The engineer has the members of the band, and the audience to think about.

“If you do what I've suggested then you will be sincerely thanked and given respect by the performers….”

The suggestions you make basically describe the service that I would expect from any of my colleagues. I think that if you band get bigger and start playing better venues – your frustrations will be eased.

It seems to me from what you describe you are meeting a lot of inexperienced and incompetent engineers. What has spurred my reply is your overall reference to sound engineers in general. I don’t think you have ever toured with your own sound engineer and it sound like you are doing gigs at venues with a FOH guy also doing monitors and you don’t seem to realize that this can be a difficult job.

Perhaps your frustrations should be directed at the promoter or venue manager or directly to the engineer - and not at sound engineers in general.

Also, keep in mind the age old sound engineer’s expression:

“You can’t polish a turd!”

Cheers.

John


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James PerrettModerator



Joined: 10/09/01
Posts: 10452
Loc: The wilds of Hampshire
Re: getting bands to turn down their amps new [Re: jimdrake]
      #57686 - 03/12/04 11:35 AM
I'm afraid that I'm with Guy and Bassdude here. Unless you are working for the band and they have specifically asked you to help them choose the best gear to use, a live sound engineer should never try to persuade a band to use different gear. Unfortunately, I've seen young sound engineers straight out of college try to impose their own way of doing things too often. Chances are that these guys will have been shown one way of doing things and they assume that there is only that one way to do these things.

The best live sound engineers know that they're working for two masters, the band and the audience, and their job is to keep both happy. It helps if you have separate monitor and FOH engineers but they still need to be aware of each others' jobs. In fact, keeping the band happy is probably more important than keeping the audience happy - if the band like you then chances are they'll want to work with you again. The ability to get around problems quickly is possibly more important than knowing how to create a good mix. If you're working with a great engineer you probably won't even realise that there has been a problem.

Cheers.

James.

--------------------
JRP Music - Audio Mastering and Restoration.
http://www.jrpmusic.net


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John G
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Joined: 13/11/01
Posts: 290
Loc: UK
Re: getting bands to turn down their amps new [Re: James Perrett]
      #57688 - 03/12/04 11:40 AM
As always, well said James. I didn't really make that clear, but of course if you are covering both FOH & Mons, you must try and keep everyone happy.

My gripe is with BassDude lumping in all sound engineers together.

Cheers.

John

Edited by John G (03/12/04 11:44 AM)


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James PerrettModerator



Joined: 10/09/01
Posts: 10452
Loc: The wilds of Hampshire
Re: getting bands to turn down their amps new [Re: John G]
      #57691 - 03/12/04 11:47 AM
Quote John G:


It seems to me from what you describe you are meeting a lot of inexperienced and incompetent engineers. What has spurred my reply is your overall reference to sound engineers in general. I don?t think you have ever toured with your own sound engineer and it sound like you are doing gigs at venues with a FOH guy also doing monitors and you don?t seem to realize that this can be a difficult job.






I think what spurred my last reply was that, as both a touring sound engineer and as an artist, I've been subjected to poor sound engineers and they're often people either at an educational establishment or not long out of an educational establishment so they think they know all there is to know about sound engineering. They're not able to realise their limitations and admit that they don't know a way around a problem.

In contrast, most of the more experienced engineers that I've worked with just get on with the job without fuss and will sometimes discuss their past bodges with amazing candour. They're comfortable with their abilities and have nothing to prove.

Cheers.

James.

--------------------
JRP Music - Audio Mastering and Restoration.
http://www.jrpmusic.net


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Dave Gate
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Joined: 02/02/04
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Loc: M6/M61/M60/M62/M65
Re: getting bands to turn down their amps new [Re: jimdrake]
      #57711 - 03/12/04 12:22 PM
As a venue production manager who deals with a lot of sound engineers, and lighting engineers for that matter (in fact lighting is most of what I do nowadays) I can say that at most of the gigs I've worked on more time has been spent on setting up the monitor mix and making sure the band is happy than on FOH as a good engineer can get a good PA sound without a lot of trouble, particularly if they know the room and the kit.

For the record although I work for a students' union and employ students as staff I would never allow them to mix FOH or monitors on any gig - I always get an engineer (or two) from my friendly local PA company, who supplied me with our setup and hire us extras when we need them, if the band don't have their own people.

In the same way when I am doing lights for a band whose music I don't know, which often happens as a lot of bands tour without someone to do the lighting, I always talk to band and tour manager to find out what sort of looks they want, if there's any specific looks for specific pieces, and if there's anything they particularly don't want. So with one fairly well known rock band I had a very easy night as they said: no smoke, no strobes, no moving lights and try and avoid flashing them too much. Four colour wash and spots all night; which would usually be what the support band got.

--------------------
Gear List: reverse only.


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John G
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Re: getting bands to turn down their amps new [Re: James Perrett]
      #57723 - 03/12/04 12:42 PM
Quote James Perrett:

[
I think what spurred my last reply was that, as both a touring sound engineer and as an artist, I've been subjected to poor sound engineers and they're often people either at an educational establishment or not long out of an educational establishment so they think they know all there is to know about sound engineering. They're not able to realise their limitations and admit that they don't know a way around a problem.

In contrast, most of the more experienced engineers that I've worked with just get on with the job without fuss and will sometimes discuss their past bodges with amazing candour. They're comfortable with their abilities and have nothing to prove.




Hi James. Initially, I wasn't going to post anything on this thread - I rarely have time these days apart from today. I also agree with all you are saying - maybe my rant was a bit rash, but in particular the part of the post that annoyed me was:

"The live sound engineer hasn't gone to rehearsals and does not interact with the performers, doesn't write the songs nor make any development in the arrangements. He will never be part of the band. He can't take any credit for the performance other than not being a hindrance! His FOH mix isn't necessarily how the band would like to sound and all they really have to do is have the PA set-up properly and do a competent mix. It's not rocket science."

I agree that a decent engineer just gets on with it. I was a bit annoyed with the implication by BassDude that an engineers input is not important to the development of the material or sound of a band. I feel that when he starts working with his own engineer many of his problems will be solved, and perhaps he'll realize how important a touring engineer can be to making a band's life easy.

By highlighting my quote above, I assume that you are disgreeing with it. To be honest, of the entire rant you have highlighted, the bit I think was irrelevant in my post was that section.

I'm not trying to say that the SE bassdude is experiencing aren't crap. I'm just saying his post was generally aimed at everyone - I wouldn't say to him all muso's are pants because they do not turn upon time occasionally, or make mistakes or play to loud. It was the generalization I was trying to correct.

Cool.

John


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Octopussy



Joined: 01/09/04
Posts: 562
Loc: Melbourneo
Re: getting bands to turn down their amps new [Re: jimdrake]
      #57870 - 03/12/04 03:47 PM
Hi John G,

actually I wasn't aiming this at the guys who would be freelance and taken on by a band. I totally was aiming for the SE who volunteers and becomes part of the furniture at a venue.

A freelance SE who has become part of the show, knows what the band want in terms of mix for FOH and or mons etc is infact the opposite of what I was going on about. So if you thought that I was refereing to people who are skilled live SE's and work as part of a touring crew or because a band knows his or her work then that's a whole other ball game entirely.

I've had my chances at the big money in other situations than I'm in now. Endorsment deals all over the place etc etc. but for most of my work I've aimed myself at working with talented aquaintances and friends! There are some peices of work out there in pro band land and I have happened to have had some bad band experiences! So most of my work is clubs, outdoor festivals and pubs; especially here in Australia. But then I've had to relocate here and set up a life and support a new wife and get the right visas n' all kinds of crud. In fact I've only been gigging here just over a year!

Anyone who has reacted to my comments then to me that's good so long as it makes you think. But if I've sounded derogatory about experienced and capable SE's then it wasn't meant. But they are as rare as hen's teeth!

Regards,
bassdude


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John G
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Re: getting bands to turn down their amps new [Re: jimdrake]
      #57891 - 03/12/04 04:06 PM
Bassdude...

You know what. I apologise. I need to chill out a bit.
If I spent more time here on the forum, it probably would have been obvious to me that you were referring to specific house engineers rather than touring, and just trying to provoke some thought.

That said, I have a house gig in addition to touring with bands and always work with the band to get the things you mention right. But, I can see your point about 'engineers' who have graduated from courses but don't actually know what they are doing. They don't have the experience yet to cope with the situtations they have talked their way into. If only these courses forced and these people to spend six monthes in a wharehouse, and doing ins & outs for PA companies before they even touch a desk and start messing up other peoples gigs.

What they really need to do is sit back, do some stage work patching and mic'ing up for a while under an experienced engineer, and learn from what they do.

I was lucky that I was taken under my wing by a load of top sound guys when I was seventeen or so, so by the time I got to uni I had already worked main stage reading, etc. and learnt that way.

Anyway. Enough of me chatting. Hope that your gigs go well in the future, and that you kick these SE's you are having problems with into shape.

John

Edited by John G (03/12/04 04:06 PM)


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xFasterMikeyH



Joined: 08/10/04
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Re: getting bands to turn down their amps new [Re: jimdrake]
      #57921 - 03/12/04 04:56 PM
Quote jimdrake:

when we ask the bands to turn down their amps we are always told that the sound is different at lower volumes and that they like the sound at higher levels. this is the typical response you get from a guitarist but i have yet to be shown that this is true.


LOL Mate, sit down with a guitar amp and record it at different levels.

FWIW having done lots of SUs up and down the country I empathise with the bands you're dealing with. In all possiblity you are one of the decent SEs, but if they've done any gigs at all they will have come up against some terrible in house guys and therefore will be fairly unhappy with one advising them about their sound.

My personal favourite was the FOH guy who (during soundcheck) didn't seem able to hear the massive bass rumble/feedback that was going on. Eventually, when it became clear that he wasn't going to do anything about it, we stopped playing and he nearly spilled his tea reaching for the faders.

In your defence most bands are [ ****** ], have massive egos and don't have a clue about sound, so you're in a lose-lose scenario. Oh well.

FMH


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jimdrake
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Re: getting bands to turn down their amps new [Re: xFasterMikeyH]
      #57948 - 03/12/04 06:03 PM
Quote xFasterMikeyH:

Mate, sit down with a guitar amp and record it at different levels.




i think you may be missing my point.

if you are playing a guitar at two different levels then it WILL sound different.

the volume will be different and it may also have a different timbre to it. HOWEVER this change in timbre does not mean that the SOUND being produced is actually different due to the way we perceive sound at different levels.

i would like to try the following setup to prove/disprove your point.

set up a guitar amp and a monitor next to each other. play the guitar through the amp at a high level, as if you were with your band. this will sound stupidly loud if you are on your own. you don't tend to realise how loud things are when you are in the middle of gig. try and record this level so it is accurately repeatable.

now turn the amp down to a suitable practice volume. in a live gig this would reduce spill into foh probably completely. mic up the amp and send it through the monitor. if you can accurately repeat the level on the guitar amp then you should now be able to a/b the difference.

i would bet that there is little to no difference. if i'm wrong then i'm wrong.


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Dave Gate
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Re: getting bands to turn down their amps new [Re: jimdrake]
      #58043 - 03/12/04 11:44 PM
The thing is - and I don't mean to be either patronising or offensive by saying this - in this day and age when students' unions are under a tremendous amount of commercial pressure any SU that cannot deliver the goods in a professional manner needs to reassess their modus operandi.

Having worked in the field for a while I have heard so many stories about SUs that have volunteer crews who either don't get paid, or get paid in beer; but if they've found the get-in of a show too hard they just don't turn up for the get-out, which in the end gives the whole sector a bad name.

Often worse than this are the SUs that run the crew as a society, so the senior people (stage manager and the like) are not the people who are best at the job but the ones who are the most popular.

Having said that I know of commercial venues where the crew are effectively the DJ's mates; and you just have to hope that they turn up at the end and aren't too pissed to work.

As far as I'm concerned I work for a Students Union and I expect my venue to be run on a professional level from the top down. That may cost more money, but if you are serious about what you do then it's worth it in the long term. After all Manchester Academy is a student union venue which is also one of Manchester's most sought after venues.

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Studio Support Gnome
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Re: getting bands to turn down their amps new [Re: jimdrake]
      #58063 - 04/12/04 12:34 AM
Quote jimdrake:

Quote xFasterMikeyH:

Mate, sit down with a guitar amp and record it at different levels.




i think you may be missing my point.

if you are playing a guitar at two different levels then it WILL sound different.

the volume will be different and it may also have a different timbre to it. HOWEVER this change in timbre does not mean that the SOUND being produced is actually different due to the way we perceive sound at different levels.

i would like to try the following setup to prove/disprove your point.

set up a guitar amp and a monitor next to each other. play the guitar through the amp at a high level, as if you were with your band. this will sound stupidly loud if you are on your own. you don't tend to realise how loud things are when you are in the middle of gig. try and record this level so it is accurately repeatable.

now turn the amp down to a suitable practice volume. in a live gig this would reduce spill into foh probably completely. mic up the amp and send it through the monitor. if you can accurately repeat the level on the guitar amp then you should now be able to a/b the difference.

i would bet that there is little to no difference. if i'm wrong then i'm wrong.





1) I rather LIKE John G, and In every respect, although he misunderstood bassdude to an extent, his answer was bang on the money..... having done the same job, I can't emphasise enough how much i agree with him.... and the MOST enjoyable gig of all IMHO is that of the "6th band member" tour engineer.....

2) Guitar amps........ Hmmmmm

First off, barring the use of a power soak, yes they DO sound different at high levels, when pushed hard, the power stage has it's own effect on the tonality, and introduces distortions that are NOT present at lower levels..... so I'm afraid that IS true, and it's NOT merely a perceptual difference.

AND the speaker cones behave slightly differently when being run hot and hard...... adding their own colour as well...... usually however, this is slightly less critical when talking about level, although the speakers ARE important overall........
HOWEVER

Most guitarists, ( some for their entire careers), buy Amps AND Cabs that are simply over specified for the job in the current day and age. Back in the days of the Weedy PA in the 70's and into the early 80's , it was often the case that you NEEDED a 100 Watt Marshall full (2 4x12's) stack running at full tilt to get the guitar sound out into the crowd, especially with smaller under powered PA's in medium sized venues....

The trouble is that when you stand right in front of one of these monsters, you cannot actually hear what it's doing ! you need to be a good 20 feet or more away from it to appreciate it's full sound.........

Sadly the jobbing Engineer cannot really expect much hope of the visiting band going out and buying a 30-50 Watt amp just coz he says so....

These days, with even a moderate PA, a 30-50 Watt Amp, really is All that's required, and can produce that power stage distortion at much moire moderate stage levels, leaving the monitor engineer, and FOH Engineer a MUCH easier job..... and usually resulting in a cleaner, better balanced stage sound.

However, unless you work regularly with a band that knows this For THEMSELVES , you aren't likely to get so lucky.

So the Power soak is often a GREAT idea, IF you can get them to accept it.... generally, i found this not to difficult if one explained and demonstrated without treating them like idiots.... showing you really DO understand the niceties of their particular instrument and sound, and giving them the sound they want, whilst still maintaining a reasonable on stage level usually does the trick... but you really have to treat themn as equals... NOT all musicians are idiots you know.....

trouble is, a LOT of nonetheless talented engineers DON'T actually understand all the elements that go in to making the artistes "Sound"

which is usually where the "use a Pod" comment seems to originate......

I quite agree, they DO make life ridiculously easy..... But telling a guitarist to use one instead of the gear he's spent years putting together into his own version of "sonic nirvana" is just plain rude, never mind Dumb.....

For the record, I did start off using 100 Watt marshalls..... but for the last few years, I've used a 30 Watt Laney... Driving it's 2x10 and a 2x12, nothing larger is required... any venue where it isn;t loud enough on it's own, should havea PA large enough in use to reinforce it more than sufficiently..... and i quite often switch it to "half" power (clever buggers at laney fitted a pentode/triode mode switch for the power stage) , I can still drive it hard, but Engineers LOVE it!

(That said I haven't played live for a little while now , too busy, too old, and too knackered....)

It's also fantastic in the studio..... ;D

I will admit there's nothing quite like the trouser flapping ability of a full wall of 4x12's, but they're not truly needed any more.

The worst sinner I recall was a guy from "the Uk Subs" who had a 200Watt custom Trace elliot guitar amp, running 2 4x12 long throw cabs absolutely flat out..... and absolutely would NOT compromise whatsoever, even in a venue where both stage AND room were plainly too small for the rig........ Man i HATED him.....

Still made him sound good....... But i hated him......



Max

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Nathan



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Re: getting bands to turn down their amps new [Re: jimdrake]
      #58116 - 04/12/04 09:18 AM
Quote:

The worst sinner I recall was a guy from "the Uk Subs" who had a 200Watt custom Trace elliot guitar amp, running 2 4x12 long throw cabs absolutely flat out..... and absolutely would NOT compromise whatsoever, even in a venue where both stage AND room were plainly too small for the rig........ Man i HATED him.....

Still made him sound good....... But i hated him......






...not just me then

--------------------
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lincoln, uk.


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Guy Johnson



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Re: getting bands to turn down their amps new [Re: jimdrake]
      #58128 - 04/12/04 10:56 AM
'Well', he said, rubbing his hands and booting Text Edit, 'this is a fine can of worms . . . '

A) Rather than marching SE's out, complain like mad to the promoters, who are probably not paying enough to get experienced engineers, or engineers who have to earn their living, rather than being on the dole (apologies in advance to those who ate trying to get off the dole - difficult, as I know!)

B) I usually get a better stage sound than FOH when I do bands at one nice 400 capacity hall. The bands love it, but I sometimes get complaints from deaf punters at the rear of the hall to 'turn it up'. But who listens to deaf idiots who cannot be bothered to go to the front of the venue, where it is loud!

C) Even if the engineer doesn't know the band, he should always ask what they want to sound like. (quite often they cannot answer this simple question!) And then make a bloody good guess (according to the band's style and his own love of music) and produce damn fine mixes: They might not be exactly like the band want, but will be a LOT better than a boring, sterile rendering of them.

D) Quite often the FOH will mask specific bass feedback, and we rely on people on stage to point them out - - so all you performers out there, please say, as when mixing FOH and monitors, we cannot be on stage all the time. And while asking for improvements on stage, do it one at a time!! And yell out 'Drummer', or 'Bass', so we can do it quicker. It's the sort of feedback we want, players . . .

E) Bloody deafening guitarists like the one Max was on about . . . I LOATHE them: No consideration for Band, Audience, Room, Anything . . . except their pathetic egos. There was one potential nice high-profile guitarist/band gig I engineered - The guitar was so loud I was deafened even with earplugs. I left the desk, and the room, in sheer embarrassment at the horrendous racket. And so did most of the audience. And did the guy show any remorse, or wonder why they left? No.

G


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John G
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Re: getting bands to turn down their amps new [Re: Guy Johnson]
      #58288 - 04/12/04 08:02 PM
Really good points guy. I agree with all of the above.

On a similar story, I once had a high profile act (singer) suffering from severe hearing loss. Spent ages on his monitor sound and he required a huge boost around 2.5 - 4k. As the venue was pretty small and the high end in his wedges was insane - it was painful FOH from his wedges alone.

During the gig I received various complaints - but was under strict orders not to change the monitor sound at all mid gig. Of course, I stuck with the artist (and put in my ER15 plugs!) and didn't change the stage mix - until his wife and manager requested that I pull out a little 'high'. I must have pulled out no more than 2dB on the graphic, when he went beserk on stage threating to "cut my ass" because he "couldn't hear a thing!"

Sensitive ears for a deaf guy! I threw the high end back in sharpish, and all was well.

One artists who should deafinately try in-ears!!

Cheers.

John


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orangefunk
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Re: getting bands to turn down their amps new [Re: jimdrake]
      #58369 - 05/12/04 12:18 AM
I haven't read all the responses, but in my experience I've found that I like to rely on the sound engineer at a gig because the sound I hear onstage is not necessary the sound the audience hears...

Case in point, for a long time I played epiano in a fusion band, Mahavishnu/RTF style where we mixed ourselves (yuk!)... my rhodes piano sounded great on stage but was never heard by the audience as I was convinced I was so damn loud...

After we found a sound guy we sounded a *lot* better,

I wouldn't get too upset about the use of PODs in a live situation either... on a studio recording it might be an issue, but live I'm not so sure... I'm sure alot of it is in the mind...

I just saw Bebel Gilberto at the Academy and thought the sound was all rather shrill but slick and produced...

As for the whole muso thing, well I'm a musician of 20+ years, playing all kinds of music from jazz/rock/r n b to my new found love of Indian ragas... Experience has told me I 'd rather leave the sound details that the audience hears to someone else while I get on with the actual music itself... I think in my opinion the sound engineer is like another member of the band.

Anyway thats just my pennys worth

Peace
Orange


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decktwo
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Re: getting bands to turn down their amps new [Re: jimdrake]
      #58694 - 05/12/04 11:44 PM
Could'nt they just use lower powered amps and get the sound by driving a smaller amp.

It seems that everyone in a band wants a huge stack, when more often than not a small 30w combo will do the trick.

Sure if you play large venues on a regular basis then get a stack or whatever you want.

Regards


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orangefunk
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Re: getting bands to turn down their amps new [Re: decktwo]
      #58852 - 06/12/04 01:14 PM
Great point... I found that my guitarist sounded great with his Rivera 30W valve.. seemed to overdrive just right, plus when miked it sounded great through the PA... not sure why guitarists really need stacks these days if they are going through a PA as well...


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Studio Support Gnome
Not so Miserable Git


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Re: getting bands to turn down their amps new [Re: decktwo]
      #58893 - 06/12/04 02:14 PM
Errr good point,
well made, i think you'll find I said words almost exactly to that effect buried deep within the labyrinthian post i made a bit earlier

Max, the smug bar steward

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orangefunk
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Re: getting bands to turn down their amps new [Re: Studio Support Gnome]
      #58936 - 06/12/04 04:04 PM
Thanks to you also then :-)

I played in a 13 piece band blues band with a guitarist with one of those bigger Blue De Ville amps adn he always told me he wished he'd bought a smaller amp as he felt it was too loud... I think he ended up getting some kind of valve overdrive pedal to get the right sound at lower volumes... We even did gigs playing to 1000-2000 people (usually CAMRA (yuk!) drunken beer festival type of things) and he still felt that way..


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fluffybeastie
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Re: getting bands to turn down their amps new [Re: orangefunk]
      #59017 - 06/12/04 06:10 PM
I've seen a number of bands using pods, Kosheen etc.
Wouldn't say they sounded special, but certainly not appaling (not my kinda music)...
...they also placed their drummer behind a set of screens, to reduce the levels on stage.
Dunno if it would be viable for use on guitars given the different range of frequencies?

My own personal choice would be to crank a small amp too though.


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pjfoh



Joined: 06/12/04
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Re: getting bands to turn down their amps new [Re: fluffybeastie]
      #59160 - 06/12/04 11:41 PM
Surely if you plan to be in a band for long it's probably a good idea to choose your equipment in order to reduce stage noise. Bands need to use their own equipment to give a good performance, of course, but how about if they chose it to benefit the audience at the same time as themselves.(after all they buy the tickets/records)

You'll find you won't appreciate the unique tone of your instrument much when you're half deaf, and if you don't like being unable to hear the other performers then any monitor engineer, especially in smaller venues with lower end equipment, will be able to help you much more if the stage is quieter.


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Mike C4miles
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Re: getting bands to turn down their amps new [Re: jimdrake]
      #59473 - 07/12/04 04:20 PM
Problem is you can't generally try gear out in a live setting. My trace Elliot bass combo sounded fine in the shop and the practice studio, but depending on the venue acoustics either the drummer could ONLY hear me, or I couldn't hear my own sound at all! (the drummer thought this was the better option). Mind you I'm still slightly deaf from standing four rows back from Blackfoot Sue's bass stack over twnty years ago; ears rang for a week; had to order drinks in sign language.

--------------------
If money is the root of all evil, what is money squared?


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Mr DiBergi



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Re: getting bands to turn down their amps new [Re: jimdrake]
      #59979 - 08/12/04 05:18 PM
Quote jimdrake:



if you are playing a guitar at two different levels then it WILL sound different.

the volume will be different and it may also have a different timbre to it. HOWEVER this change in timbre does not mean that the SOUND being produced is actually different due to the way we perceive sound at different levels.

i would like to try the following setup to prove/disprove your point.

set up a guitar amp and a monitor next to each other. play the guitar through the amp at a high level, as if you were with your band. this will sound stupidly loud if you are on your own. you don't tend to realise how loud things are when you are in the middle of gig. try and record this level so it is accurately repeatable.

now turn the amp down to a suitable practice volume. in a live gig this would reduce spill into foh probably completely. mic up the amp and send it through the monitor. if you can accurately repeat the level on the guitar amp then you should now be able to a/b the difference.

i would bet that there is little to no difference. if i'm wrong then i'm wrong.




You're wrong.

I've never heard such balls. I'm with bassdude on this - you seem to have no understanding of musicians or equipment. Why don't you try actually DOING this experiment and educate yourself? It's completely different. If you can't hear the difference - hell, if you can't IMAGINE that it would happen from a theorietical point of view - you're in the wrong job, totally. If you actually get paid for what you do. Have you ever actually heard a POD? A guitar amp is not something that makes an electric guitar's output louder, without colouration. It's half of the sound - if not more than half!

I'm so overrun with incredulity that I can't even type straight, let alone be constructive. I've been the victim of idiots that think they're sound engineers screwing around with my gear, but like someone said you have to be polite for political reasons. However, now one of that rank is here it's hunting season....

Your comments about guitar amps is just clueless. The idea that perhaps guitarists should be made to plug into a POD instead of their normal rig is ridiculous. I bet you've probably tried to get rid of ringing feedback with 3-band EQ too. "God, those musicians are such a pain in the ass, why don't we play a CD and they can mime"....

Arrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr!!!!!


Please, go away.

--------------------
Looking for musicians?
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jimdrake
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Re: getting bands to turn down their amps new [Re: jimdrake]
      #60009 - 08/12/04 05:55 PM
Last night I did another gig.

I made more of an effort to talk with the bands, explaining how sound check would work and give them some general info about the venue. I also introduced the foh engineer and myself. After this chat the bands were much more forthcoming with their technical requirements, their instrumental setup (in detail) and where the various members would actually be on stage.

At the end of the night and during sound check, all three bands commented on 'a great sound mate. cheers'.

This has highlighted one major mistake I had been making previously. I was assuming that the bands would communicate any problems they were having with the sound engineer. Bassdude, did you TELL the engineer that you couldn't hear the guitars/vocals?

Some specific points to make:

The drummer in one band wanted a headphone mix. He had his own headphone amp and headphones so all I had to do was run him a power cable and a spare aux send from the desk. Should it be the bands responsibility to volunteer this information, or down to the engineer to ask them if they have any special requirements? If I had not made an effort to talk to the bands prior to sound check I would have to run more cables around the stage with the whole band waiting and the foh engineer getting bored after the drummer says 'oh yeah, I have some headphones. Could you plug them into your sound desk?'

We spent more time working out monitor mixes. The various band members seemed more comfortable in asking for (sometimes a lot) of changes in their monitor. The overall sound check time seemed to be less.

None of the band members had huge guitar stacks.


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Octopussy



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Re: getting bands to turn down their amps new [Re: jimdrake]
      #60121 - 08/12/04 09:27 PM
Well done jimdrake.

It's thing like you said in your last post that will get you on the path! With this line of thinking you will get admirers in the muso community and they will want to play at your venue.

The trouble with all this gigging stuff is that there are lots of different ways a band will get the gig!

For instance perhaps one band member is the guy responsible for getting the gigs or perhaps they will come through a process of handing in a demo to a booker for the venue or things may even go through an agent or manager. So with so many avenues through which a chain of communication may be established it's hard to get the liaising right!

If your venue is the kind that attracts national and international name acts then the venue will definitely have someone liaise with you and give you all the info you need. But this is usually a very high level pro thing. Usually at that level they will have road crew to take care of almost everything and will probably bring their own PA, desks, light rigs etc.

IMO you need to be able to adapt to newly occurring set-up scenarios at your end. SO I would say that it's up to you to be on the ball and to make sure of things. IMO this is where the real art of the Live SE is and it's creative problem solving that will give you a buzz from making things work.

Band members can have full time jobs, have to attend rehearsals, create the music etc etc. Sometimes the demands of other sundries added to all this can be a muso nightmare. If you establish a routine where you open the dialogue and learn the experiences you will have to adapt to, then before to long you will be top banana!

Having thought about the POD thing I would say that it's not a scenario to be seen as good practice especially for guitars! But... you could use some kind of amp sim as a replacement for a bass DI in some scenarios. But by and large I'd just stick with a regular DI unit as this will be common currency between SE's and musos alike.

Regards,
bassdude


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Dave Gate
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Re: getting bands to turn down their amps new [Re: jimdrake]
      #60281 - 09/12/04 09:07 AM
Regarding the drummer with the headphone amp: it's been my experience that bands will normally provide information about this sort of thing in advance so you can prepare for it.

I often get detailed technical specs from bands which mention that they are carrying their own in-ear monitoring for example and requesting that specified monitor mixes are left open for this.

But if they spring it on you a a surprise then deal with it (as it appears you did) and everything will be fine.

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James PerrettModerator



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Re: getting bands to turn down their amps new [Re: jimdrake]
      #60363 - 09/12/04 12:37 PM
Quote jimdrake:

Last night I did another gig.

I made more of an effort to talk with the bands, explaining how sound check would work and give them some general info about the venue. I also introduced the foh engineer and myself. After this chat the bands were much more forthcoming with their technical requirements, their instrumental setup (in detail) and where the various members would actually be on stage.

At the end of the night and during sound check, all three bands commented on 'a great sound mate. cheers'.






That's the way to do it - hopefully those bands will now remember you as a good sound engineer and your venue as a good place to play.

Cheers.

James.

--------------------
JRP Music - Audio Mastering and Restoration.
http://www.jrpmusic.net


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Nathan



Joined: 13/09/04
Posts: 1882
Loc: lincolnshire government experi...
Re: getting bands to turn down their amps new [Re: jimdrake]
      #60645 - 09/12/04 10:31 PM
for jimdrake
only half of the live SE's job is technical, the rest is communication skills and people management. keep it up!

for Bassdude,

the important objective in the lines of communication is that the gig promoter gives the technical staff/person the technical spec.

the gigs i have done with the most uncomfortable atmosphere have been where there were special or very specific requirement from the band which have not been passed on to sound or light personnel, resulting in a can't-do or a bad compromise. this is usually due to the promoter sitting on the spec -bands with special tech requirements usu make the effort to send specs, they just don't always get to the right man.

every gig has a promoter, even if its the bar owner. every gig should have a tech person to help the band(s) sound good (in everyone's interest). they're usu different people,i'd encourage every gigging band to find their way past the first guy and touch base with the SE. at the very least a quick chat will help you guage their competence, equip level and prepare you for contingency plans if its not up to scratch.

i always try to ask the promoter for a contact number/email add for a band member/tour manager/band's engineer; this way i can double check requirements, gain concessions for impractical requirements and start the karma off on its feet.


On the subject of guitar sounds, i wish guitarists would acknowledge that the tone improvements gained thru pushing the volume can be offset/completely trashed by the resultant inability to separate the vocals or other quieter sources, and the performance detriment caused by drowning out these in the monitor mixes. thermonucular stage levels rob the engineer of any control, and the band of a good sound.

the art of live sound (and i mean the whole thing, band et al, not just the PA) is a finely balanced compromise. somewhere in the middle of these volume wars is a level that complements sound intelligebility and performance.



and on the subsect of Pod-bashing: i know several studios who praise the sound of their higher-end units, and i've gotten great results from line6 racks and combos on live stages. its the musician's choice.

be open-minded and keep the lines of communication open.

--------------------
planet nine
lincoln, uk.


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Q00
member


Joined: 01/10/02
Posts: 821
Loc: sussex
Re: getting bands to turn down their amps new [Re: jimdrake]
      #60652 - 09/12/04 10:43 PM
Quote:

only half of the live SE's job is technical, the rest is communication skills and people management. keep it up!






I second that. I always talk to the band beforehand, ask them what they want monitor wise and FOH. Its crazy to think as a sound engineer you can get everything perfect without communicating to the band.

As for loud guitar cabs, I always ask if they'd be able to have them facing them from the side rather than from behind facing the audience. Asking is much better than telling!!

--------------------
"Saying that you do is just gold plated XLR elitist bulls**t!" - ow


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Thomas Hobbes



Joined: 13/12/04
Posts: 11
Re: getting bands to turn down their amps new [Re: jimdrake]
      #62833 - 15/12/04 07:07 AM
I always have premade band sheets that I bring with me. If it is a band that I work with a lot (sometimes I have traveling groups that contact me whenever they are in town to have me run sound for them because I have built a repore with them) then I keep the band sheet for future use.
Anyway on the sheet I have it setup like this

Instrument | Name | Stage Possition | Monitor Mix | Misc

Under instrument I would put what they play and if they also sing. And also what their name is, that helps you remember, when you are talking to them throught the talk back mic, and what they want in their monitor. All of this stuff you ask for when you are introducing yourself to them. Remember, you are serving the band, even though you yourself exercise a certain authority, your job is to make them feel at ease and comfortable.


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sfdrummer



Joined: 11/01/05
Posts: 1
Re: getting bands to turn down their amps new [Re: jimdrake]
      #72562 - 11/01/05 11:06 PM
Both the musican and the se have a professional responsibility to recognize the goal of a live performance ....the musician is able to perform as an artist at the highest level possible and the se helps to make that a reality to the listener. I have performed as a drummer with Bob Hope to Chuck Berry and a hell of a lot in between. I have been fortunate to have had many more great experiences through the years than bad one's regarding how the overall sound experience came across for both the artist and the listener. I believe that is because both sides of the question strive to be open minded about what equipment is best suited for the venue. What equipment sounded good in the rehearsal room(or in some cases, the garage!)may not be the best for the stage. Most of the professional musicians that I have worked with(over 40 years) have a special set up for live that is much different than their rehearsal hall set up. With all of the electronic advances made through the years it is possible to get just about any sound out of a guitar(or drums) without the required over-the-top volume used in years past. If, more starting musicians cared more about their "musicianship" than certain sounds requiring more volume they would have a better professional career in the long term. Being a good musician and a good se require a mutual give and take. We have much to learn from one another, if only we would get the chip off the shoulder and listen more.
Good luck to all of you.


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