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Big Band sound

For performing musicians and engineers: stagecraft, engineering and gear.

Re: Big Band sound

Postby shufflebeat » Thu Dec 05, 2019 5:17 pm

Mike Monte wrote:.
I have performed in situations where the soundman truly feels that his gear is his instrument and that he-knows-what-it-should-sound-like.

Not all music is rock'n roll.

I'd have a slight quibble with this in that a good tech should know what the aim is ( in the his case, the acoustic sound but balanced and appropriate to the venue/occasion) and then it's a very good thing that the tech "knows-what-it-should-sound-like", etc.

But I do take your point 100% and am being pedantic.

I tend to work with folky stuff and observe that some people, including musicians who mix themselves, sometimes go for a very unnatural parody of their acoustic sound which is invariably more difficult to mix.

I'm looking mostly at you, fiddle players.
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Re: Big Band sound

Postby Wonks » Thu Dec 05, 2019 6:10 pm

What sort of material do you cover? There's going to be a different emphasis if you're doing classic soul numbers compared to doing say, Glen Miller style songs.
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Re: Big Band sound

Postby paul_c » Thu Dec 05, 2019 6:58 pm

Wonks wrote:What sort of material do you cover? There's going to be a different emphasis if you're doing classic soul numbers compared to doing say, Glen Miller style songs.

Here's the setlist from the most recent gig (just over an hour):

Rock Around the Clock
In the Mood
Santa Baby
A Little Blues Please
Blue Moon
Big Bad Handsome Man
The Christmas Song
I loves you Porgy
Ain't No Other Man
Little Brown Jug
Blue Suede Shoes

So, a mix of big band standards and some more modern stuff.
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Re: Big Band sound

Postby Mike Monte » Wed Jan 01, 2020 9:37 pm

Last night (NYE) I subbed (playing sax) with a bigband.
The band was full instrumentation plus vocalist (she was good) and the band had its own PA with no sound engineer.

Before I comment about the PA, I will say that the ballroom was hard to mix in: approx 150'x150' LW, 25-30' ceiling height, and all glass walls (floor to ceiling) on three sides.....

The PA; two 15" speakers on sticks (one on either side of the band) and two 15" monitors for the vocalist. All of the speakers were active. one vocalist mic (out front), two (unswitched) saxophone solo mics plus another one for trombone solos/announcements.

Keyboard was run though the monitors and was disturbingly loud....'drove me we could have used some bass in the monitors.

There seemed to be some reverb/effects on all mics. The announcements were illegible (according to my wife who was in the audience).
The unswitched solo mics also created an unbalanced sound in the band.

I own a small/local sound company and could have made suggestions and adjusted things a bit better but this was the first time that I have played with them thus I didn't want to step on any toes...

The bandleader and members are nice people who seem to love what they do.
Once we get into the warmer weather I'll probably "volunteer" to tech one of their gigs to get the levels set, bring a DI for the bass (plus bring some "switched mic cables").
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Re: Big Band sound

Postby Sam Spoons » Wed Jan 01, 2020 10:05 pm

I've done exactly that in the past Mike and would do it again. Hope it works out and god for you to offer :clap:
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Re: Big Band sound

Postby » Sun Apr 05, 2020 10:22 pm

To Paul-C
Paul i saw an old post of yours about the trumpet part to Imelda Mays Big Bad Handsome Man one of my singers has asked to sing it.
Is there any chance of having a copy of just the Trumpet solo part

thanks Mike Richards Big band
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