Sound system ??

Old 02-17-09, 05:16 PM
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Sound system ??

I'm not sure if this is the right place to post this, ....but here goes.. I do alot of promoting local bands and organizing concerts/fundraisers.

There is a large fundraiser coming up in June and I've been asked to be the music coordinator for it. To get the bands for a large outdoor amphitheatre that holds up to 900 people.

I've never been to this place before, it's in a location that I live pretty far from, so when the team asked me to do this, the coordinator forgot to tell me that the Amphitheatre has no sound system in place or production.

That's...a problem after getting good bands to donate their time to this. I've explained to the team coordinator that at a place that large, in order to get good sound in there and production, we can't do it for's alot of work!!! She's a business woman and doesn't really know the music part and that's okay, but to have someone donate the system and then run it all alot.

I contacted a man that has run sound out there before many times and I needed info on what kind of equipment is needed out there.

Here's what he said:

The level of audio production required at **** depends on the level of artists headlining the performance. For example, Ziggy Marley required a V-Dosc P.A. system, two engineers with Midas consoles at FOH and SOS, and 12 monitor mixes onstage. For Derek Trucks, Mike Gordon, and Buckethead, I provided my FBT PSR P.A. system, two engineers with Midas or Soundcraft consoles, and 8 mixes onstage. For local and regional bands, I provide the same speakers with maybe smaller consoles, such as my 32 channel Allen & Heath. To save even more money, it's possible to run up to 6 mixes onstage from the FOH console, instead of a SOS desk & engineer with a split.

So, if there are any sound people out there reading this...I'm understanding most of what this person is saying, but, I guess my question is.....from the description above, what kind of a system could we use that would substitute for that and yet cut costs?

Hopefully, I can try and get the coordinator to agree to raise funds before hand to be able to pay for the sound/production.

It's confusing, I know...
Old 02-18-09, 06:12 PM
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I'll move this into our entertainment section, hopefully you can get some responses there.
Old 02-19-09, 03:29 AM
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Tell all of the bandleaders and the sound engineer it's going to be a "festival" style stage, which basically means all bands work within the same provided sound parameters: drum mics, vocal mics, instrument mics, and pre-set monitor mixes.

Regardless if the bands are local, regional, or national, ask each band to provide you with a stage plot or "tech rider". This info shows the number of performers, stage layout, the number of mics required, and monitor mix preferences. Give them to the sound engineer well in advance of the date of the performance. (This is called "advancing the show".) The sound engineer will then build the system to accommodate the band with the heaviest requirements. All of the others will then fit nicely within those parameters.

If any one of the bands makes outrageous demands that will run up the price of the sound system (for example, adding a monitor console and a second technician to run it), either ask them to compromise or cut them from the show. The sound engineer can help you to get them to listen to reason. After all, it is a benefit!

On a festival stage it's also a good idea to provide drums and backline (stage amps) for the bands to share. It makes stage changeovers go a lot faster. Sometimes one band will allow all of the others to use their equipment.

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