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Singers drive me crazy!

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  • Singers drive me crazy!

    Don't you hate it when the singer, who is already the loudest sound coming from the stage, tells you he needs to be louder out front?   It's getting tired.  I even took him completely out of my monitor and still was able to hear him as loud as any other singer coming out of my monitor.  (From the FOH and other monitors not aimed at me.) They don't seem to understand that some level of headroom is not just a good idea, it's a necessity.  There's one song that we do and he never seems to sing loud enough.  I need about 10 db headroom to move his vocal up for that one song.  He wants to use up that 10db from the first song.  Last night it was that the FOH wasn't as loud as onstage.  I told him that the hearing out in the room was better than the hearing onstage.  (We don't mike the guitar, bass or drums outside of the kick.)  Of course the guitar bass and drums are going to be louder onstage, so the vocals need to be louder in the monitors too.  (I am so glad to be on the other side of the stage from the bass and guitar.)    I really think that it's getting close to time to tell him that if he wants to run sound, I'll leave my equipment home and he can invest five+ grand to run sound.  (He might be willing to do that.  Think he would read a manual on how to run sound and then learn how to do it?  Quoting Top Gear - How hard can it be?  And for those Top Gear fans, we know where that takes them.  Always a bad place.)   And while he thinks that the audience only wants to hear him, there is always something missing when one sound overdominates the sound.    I've heard it with other groups.  Keyboard drowning out everything else.  Vocal drowning out everything else.  Guitar drowning out everthing else........  Doesn't really matter what it is that's way too loud.  You don't want to hear just one thing in the audience.  (Unless it's a solo act.)   That said, generally he's a good performer and a very good vocalist.  And while he thinks he understands harmony, I don't buy it.  (And we've been working together for more than two years and I have 40+ years experience.  That doesn't guaruntee that I know what I'm talking about, but it does make it a bit more likely.  And I am a guy that has been hired to run sound for other groups.  I was looking at my shameless name dropping page of my website and thinking that it's pretty impressive for an independent.  If I worked for a reputable sound company, it's a list that would be expected.)   I think I've ranted enough.  Will check back and read your rants too.

     

    Thanks.


  • #2

    The "return" key is your friend!

    Paragraph breaks make long rants easier to read!

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    Comment


    • #3
      (We don't mike the guitar, bass or drums outside of the kick.) Of course the guitar bass and drums are going to be louder onstage, so the vocals need to be louder in the monitors too.
      -------------------------------------------

      He's got to realize that when the instruments are pushing through into the crowd it will probably overpower the monitors somewhat, so its not going to be an ideal monitor mix onstage.

      Without micing everything, you're stage volume must be pretty loud. Instead of micing everything which will require more FOH to carry everything, I wonder if IEM's would help...
      NO SIGNATURE FOR YOU!!

      Comment


      • msmooth
        msmooth commented
        Editing a comment
        IEMs would definitely help.

      • WynnD
        WynnD commented
        Editing a comment

        StratGuy22 wrote:
        (We don't mike the guitar, bass or drums outside of the kick.) Of course the guitar bass and drums are going to be louder onstage, so the vocals need to be louder in the monitors too.
        -------------------------------------------

        He's got to realize that when the instruments are pushing through into the crowd it will probably overpower the monitors somewhat, so its not going to be an ideal monitor mix onstage.

        Without micing everything, you're stage volume must be pretty loud. Instead of micing everything which will require more FOH to carry everything, I wonder if IEM's would help...
        Stage volume is about 107 dbc. (At least on my side of the stage. I measure it most gigs.) And the singer has IEMs, but he only has himself in them. (How do you do good harmony in that case? He rarely sings harmony and wants harmony to be very background. Much more than I think is appropriate.) Thing is that an artist who has been working on his own CDs was in the audience and during our first break I asked him if anything seemed out of balance. He said everything was fine and he could hear everything. Then the singer goes stupid in the third set. (I personally think the bass was a bit too hot last night, but I'm very sensitive to bass frequencies and glad he's on the far side of the stage.) I was just thinking about pulling him out of all the monitors and see which of my bandmates notices that he's gone from there. (I can already hear him very well from the FOH, even though I'm located in back of them.) Could be an interesting experiment. (Drummer might notice. He's the farthest from the Mains.)

    • #4
      Someone standing behind FOH is probably the worst person to be judging the mix, especially when the amps are firing into the crowd.

      We do mic everything, and I know if I can hear my lead through FOH (kind of "in front" of you, in sure you know what I mean), its probably a touch too loud out front.

      Wearing IEM's which block the sound, and then looking for that "out front" sound as some sort of reassurance means yeah it really is too much. Is there any way to find someone to mix the band at gigs?
      NO SIGNATURE FOR YOU!!

      Comment


      • #5

        WynnD wrote:

        Don't you hate it when the singer, who is already the loudest sound coming from the stage, tells you he needs to be louder out front?   It's getting tired.  I even took him completely out of my monitor and still was able to hear him as loud as any other singer coming out of my monitor.  (From the FOH and other monitors not aimed at me.) They don't seem to understand that some level of headroom is not just a good idea, it's a necessity.  There's one song that we do and he never seems to sing loud enough.  I need about 10 db headroom to move his vocal up for that one song.  He wants to use up that 10db from the first song.  Last night it was that the FOH wasn't as loud as onstage.  I told him that the hearing out in the room was better than the hearing onstage.  (We don't mike the guitar, bass or drums outside of the kick.)  Of course the guitar bass and drums are going to be louder onstage, so the vocals need to be louder in the monitors too.  (I am so glad to be on the other side of the stage from the bass and guitar.)    I really think that it's getting close to time to tell him that if he wants to run sound, I'll leave my equipment home and he can invest five+ grand to run sound.  (He might be willing to do that.  Think he would read a manual on how to run sound and then learn how to do it?  Quoting Top Gear - How hard can it be?  And for those Top Gear fans, we know where that takes them.  Always a bad place.)   And while he thinks that the audience only wants to hear him, there is always something missing when one sound overdominates the sound.    I've heard it with other groups.  Keyboard drowning out everything else.  Vocal drowning out everything else.  Guitar drowning out everthing else........  Doesn't really matter what it is that's way too loud.  You don't want to hear just one thing in the audience.  (Unless it's a solo act.)   That said, generally he's a good performer and a very good vocalist.  And while he thinks he understands harmony, I don't buy it.  (And we've been working together for more than two years and I have 40+ years experience.  That doesn't guaruntee that I know what I'm talking about, but it does make it a bit more likely.  And I am a guy that has been hired to run sound for other groups.  I was looking at my shameless name dropping page of my website and thinking that it's pretty impressive for an independent.  If I worked for a reputable sound company, it's a list that would be expected.)   I think I've ranted enough.  Will check back and read your rants too.

         

        Thanks.



        WynnD wrote:

        Don't you hate it when the singer, who is already the loudest sound coming from the stage, tells you he needs to be louder out front?   It's getting tired.  I even took him completely out of my monitor and still was able to hear him as loud as any other singer coming out of my monitor.  (From the FOH and other monitors not aimed at me.) They don't seem to understand that some level of headroom is not just a good idea, it's a necessity.  There's one song that we do and he never seems to sing loud enough.  I need about 10 db headroom to move his vocal up for that one song.  He wants to use up that 10db from the first song.  Last night it was that the FOH wasn't as loud as onstage.  I told him that the hearing out in the room was better than the hearing onstage.  (We don't mike the guitar, bass or drums outside of the kick.)  Of course the guitar bass and drums are going to be louder onstage, so the vocals need to be louder in the monitors too.  (I am so glad to be on the other side of the stage from the bass and guitar.)    I really think that it's getting close to time to tell him that if he wants to run sound, I'll leave my equipment home and he can invest five+ grand to run sound.  (He might be willing to do that.  Think he would read a manual on how to run sound and then learn how to do it?  Quoting Top Gear - How hard can it be?  And for those Top Gear fans, we know where that takes them.  Always a bad place.)   And while he thinks that the audience only wants to hear him, there is always something missing when one sound overdominates the sound.    I've heard it with other groups.  Keyboard drowning out everything else.  Vocal drowning out everything else.  Guitar drowning out everthing else........  Doesn't really matter what it is that's way too loud.  You don't want to hear just one thing in the audience.  (Unless it's a solo act.)   That said, generally he's a good performer and a very good vocalist.  And while he thinks he understands harmony, I don't buy it.  (And we've been working together for more than two years and I have 40+ years experience.  That doesn't guaruntee that I know what I'm talking about, but it does make it a bit more likely.  And I am a guy that has been hired to run sound for other groups.  I was looking at my shameless name dropping page of my website and thinking that it's pretty impressive for an independent.  If I worked for a reputable sound company, it's a list that would be expected.)   I think I've ranted enough.  Will check back and read your rants too.

         

        Thanks.


        it would be easier to hear vocals onstage if you didn't have to carry the wehole room with the instruments' stage volume.

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        Comment


        • RoadRanger
          RoadRanger commented
          Editing a comment

          Yah just need subs or more of them .


      • #6

        There is no way someone singing out front can tell if their vocal is the right volume. He's got all kinds of biological things happening in his head as he sings, bone conduction, just the mechanism of  his voice, bouncing around in there, blending in with the front of house as he perceives it. Best thing to do is record out front with either up PZM an iPhone or a Zoom, etc.

        Maybe he's right, maybe he's wrong, but you'll never know until you actually hear a simple clean recording of what it sounds like from the audience perspective.

        Thomas Jefferson said... "The day will come when the mystical generation of Jesus, by the Supreme Being as His father, in the womb of a virgin will be classed with the fable of the generation of Minerva in the brain of Jupiter." hmmm...

        Comment


        • #7
          Yup.

          I say get a new singer.

          NO SIGNATURE FOR YOU!!

          Comment


          • #8

            WynnD wrote:

            Don't you hate it when the singer, who is already the loudest sound coming from the stage, tells you he needs to be louder out front?   It's getting tired.  I even took him completely out of my monitor and still was able to hear him as loud as any other singer coming out of my monitor.  (From the FOH and other monitors not aimed at me.) They don't seem to understand that some level of headroom is not just a good idea, it's a necessity.  There's one song that we do and he never seems to sing loud enough.  I need about 10 db headroom to move his vocal up for that one song.  He wants to use up that 10db from the first song.  Last night it was that the FOH wasn't as loud as onstage.  I told him that the hearing out in the room was better than the hearing onstage.  (We don't mike the guitar, bass or drums outside of the kick.)  Of course the guitar bass and drums are going to be louder onstage, so the vocals need to be louder in the monitors too.  (I am so glad to be on the other side of the stage from the bass and guitar.)    I really think that it's getting close to time to tell him that if he wants to run sound, I'll leave my equipment home and he can invest five+ grand to run sound.  (He might be willing to do that.  Think he would read a manual on how to run sound and then learn how to do it?  Quoting Top Gear - How hard can it be?  And for those Top Gear fans, we know where that takes them.  Always a bad place.)   And while he thinks that the audience only wants to hear him, there is always something missing when one sound overdominates the sound.    I've heard it with other groups.  Keyboard drowning out everything else.  Vocal drowning out everything else.  Guitar drowning out everthing else........  Doesn't really matter what it is that's way too loud.  You don't want to hear just one thing in the audience.  (Unless it's a solo act.)   That said, generally he's a good performer and a very good vocalist.  And while he thinks he understands harmony, I don't buy it.  (And we've been working together for more than two years and I have 40+ years experience.  That doesn't guaruntee that I know what I'm talking about, but it does make it a bit more likely.  And I am a guy that has been hired to run sound for other groups.  I was looking at my shameless name dropping page of my website and thinking that it's pretty impressive for an independent.  If I worked for a reputable sound company, it's a list that would be expected.)   I think I've ranted enough.  Will check back and read your rants too.

             

            Thanks.


            This sounds like trouble to me.

             

            Comment


            • Lee Knight
              Lee Knight commented
              Editing a comment

              "I say get a new singer."

               

              "This sounds like trouble to me."

               


              Sure... maybe. But I also hear in the OP a very frustrated musician/soundman. Understandably. It IS frustrating. I've been there. I ran a full miced band, mixed the out front and 4 monitor mixes from stage, while I played bass, sang backup, and sang 1/3 of the lead vocals... for a couple of years. It's a juggle. It is. It's sometimes euphoric, sometimes unbearable. And it is quite understandably a thankless task that gets you thinking "**************** you!' every now and then when your bandmates take it for granted or even just give you input.

               

              I'm not suggesting the OP is wrong, rather, I'm empathizing and know that in that position, it is possible, for very good reasons, to be wrong. But the last person I would trust unconditionally would be the singer, a guy who can't possibly know, based on the physics of the situation. You can't judge these things when you have your own voice bouncing around in your head.

               

              To say he sounds like trouble... maybe. Or, maybe he truly believes he's being impartial. Any musician who wants "more me" in the mix usually truly believes that is the right call. Sure, some... well, more than a few in actual fact, want themselves way up for ego reasons, but usually I found that it is a case of that person's perspective being skewed because they're used to hearing themselves mixed up as a matter of course to aid in their performance. It's not just ego.

               

              The best piece of advice I got with regards to this scenario, and I use it all the in album mixes for bands, is that anyone can always comment on individual levels and warrants trying an idea with regards to the relative balance, but THEY CAN'T COMMENT ON THEIR OWN LEVEL.

               

              So you end up with the guitarist saying, "Bring the vocal up." Or the bassist saying, "It needs more kick." Or, the drummer saying, "Is the solo a little loud? It sounds louder that the lead vocal." But the last person to know the correct level of their own instrument or voice is the person creating it.

               

              So... it's amazing how reasonable people are when you deal with the truth, with facts. You make the case above. Then you record in a manner that accurately reflects what is really happening out front, then as a team with a common goal, you go about making it right. Whatever that may be.



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