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Author Topic: Subbing tonight w/ unfamiliar band, needing advice  (Read 2047 times)

_______

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Subbing tonight w/ unfamiliar band, needing advice
« on: February 13, 2009, 11:28:56 am »

Hello everyone,

I'm walking into a situation tonight with a band that I've only seen once.  I'm ASSuming that I'm subbing for the full-time guy who can't make it for whatever reason.  I've done this sort of thing a million times, but this time I'd like to go in with an idea of how others approach the scenario.

I always do better when I start from scratch (flat EQs, zeroed out consoled, etc.), but I have a feeling that everything will be set the way the other guy left it on the last gig.  Analog board, BTW.

I would still like to zero everything out and patch things as I see fit.  Should I leave the previously labeled board tape as is, tape over it, and remove my tape at the end of the night?

Do I risk pissing off the other guy when he finds his channel strips zeroed out?  Should I care?  Should I worry about putting things back if I repatch comps, effects, and so on (I'd have to make notes beforehand on how things started out, time might be an issue).

I'm stressing a little about this, because sometimes its hard to figure out the methodology of other soundguys.  I don't know whether to say f' it and do it my way, or attempt to go with the status quo.

Thanks,
Matt

Edit: if anyone has tips on using the Ashly Protea (House EQ) please chime in.
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Jeff Hague

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Re: Subbing tonight w/ unfamiliar band, needing advice
« Reply #1 on: February 13, 2009, 11:37:51 am »

I would do it however you are most comfortable. Tape over their tape and remove yours at the end of the night. If you repatch things, put them back the way you found them when you started. Zero-ing the board probably isnt an issue - I like to start from scratch even when its the same band as last gig - but you may want to draw a chart of the board (rack gear too) and leave it with the board for the regular guy or reset it yourself if your feeling particularly benevolent...
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Steve Tarak

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Re: Subbing tonight w/ unfamiliar band, needing advice
« Reply #2 on: February 13, 2009, 12:08:04 pm »

I agree. You'll mix your best when you're familiar with the setup. Unless I'm told not to make changes (rarely has that happened) , I'll configure a mix and the equipment the way I prefer, however, there might be something to learn from another sound providers methods. Keep your eyes open.

Steve
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Ron Kimball

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Re: Subbing tonight w/ unfamiliar band, needing advice
« Reply #3 on: February 13, 2009, 12:35:05 pm »

If the "regular guy" doesn't have a track sheet for himself he's either an idiot or likes to "start over" each time. Even if the board is only used with the one band and always the same setup the knobs can get "nudged" during setup/teardown. OTOH it's not a bad idea to do a sheet even if you're gonna zero it out as any weird problems you run into might be helped along by a look/see at what the "regular" guy did?
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Thom "Fig" Fiegle

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Re: Subbing tonight w/ unfamiliar band, needing advice
« Reply #4 on: February 13, 2009, 12:56:32 pm »

Matthew Whitman wrote on Fri, 13 February 2009 10:28

Do I risk pissing off the other guy when he finds his channel strips zeroed out?  Should I care?


I see no difference, being a house guy, whether I walk up after you are done and the strip is zeroed or every knob is turned.  I'm gonna zero it before I do anything with it.

He should not get pissed, I would not anyway.

If you change the routing drastically - make note and put it back (um... like the drive line paths being altered or changing from an auxfed sub to straight-three-way or whatever).  

But, if you move an inserted comp from channel 6 to channel 9 (or whatever) - it shouldn't matter for the next person stepping up - cuz he/she'll do their own thing anyway, right?

If you find something not functioning properly, document it and leave a note for the regular bloke - "couldn't get channel 23 to work with mic input" or some such, or my favorite - "channel 12 on your snake doesn't work."  Use this opportunity to turn the note into a "thank you" for the sub-gig, you know, in case you enjoy it. Cool

Have fun more than anything - nobody likes a stressed soundguy!
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Cosmo

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Re: Subbing tonight w/ unfamiliar band, needing advice
« Reply #5 on: February 13, 2009, 01:16:15 pm »

+1 for making notes on the routing.  For example, if the HE has comps inserted on subgroups, you might want to put them back there and maybe make note of the house eq curve and put that back if you change it.  But as for channel strips, nah, I'd zero them out when done and pull any inserts, leaving them somewhere obvious.  I have had several gigs as HE and I always zero out the board after the show, partly out of respect and partly not to give away trade secrets.  Cool
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Steve Hurt

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Re: Subbing tonight w/ unfamiliar band, needing advice
« Reply #6 on: February 13, 2009, 05:42:41 pm »

If I am using another band's rig and the channels are labeled and patched, I will use the channels as patched, not rearrange them, and I will not zero the board out at the end of the night

The reason is the monitor mix, not FOH

Not having to start from scratch on the monitor setup can be a godsend if you have to go from trailer to 1st song in 40 minutes.

If there's a guy running the board at all shows, the FOH mix is no big deal, zero it if you want.  In a bar gig, anyone who works with a band regularly can throw up faders and put together a FOH mix on the fly during the first song with no input from the band.  He can't do that with monitors so any hear start you can give him will be appreciated.  They can always zero it out if they want to start over.

(This assumes they liked the mix you were giving them.  If not, disregard)

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Tom Reid

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Re: Subbing tonight w/ unfamiliar band, needing advice
« Reply #7 on: February 13, 2009, 10:20:03 pm »

Ain't no reason to ever worry about setting everything to 0 before and after.  
Your show, you are the man.  You at least gotta have a righteous starting point to do a good job.
I wouldn't sweat it, and twisting an eq knob that has set for a couple years is doing everyone a favor.

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_______

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Re: Subbing tonight w/ unfamiliar band, needing advice
« Reply #8 on: February 14, 2009, 01:11:52 pm »

Thanks for the replies, everyone.

I got a little freaked out before the gig due to the popularity of the band.  One of those, "if I screw up everyone will know about it" kind of things.

All I have to say is, thanks Tobias for talking me through several aspects of the setup.  You helped me out thoroughly by answering the phone several times!

I could have sorted out all of the insert snakes and other assorted cables in the doghouse and rack, but it is much nicer to have someone talk you through it.

For me, it came down to providing a sound that the band was used to.  I would start from scratch if I had the gig full-time, but last night my focus was on consistency.  I didn't rock the boat aside from taking cues from the band regarding monitors, making minor adjustments to channel EQs, and mixing FOH to taste.

-M

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