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I don't even know how to title this post.


dravenzouk

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Part of me just sighs. Part of me says, "See? I told you!". Part of me grits my teeth.

 

The backstory: My metal band dissolved a while back. No bad feelings or drama, it just ended (and I've still got my pop/dance band). While that band was active, I was doing all the sound/PA. We had two guitards, and they were of the classic type. Both ran 4x12 half stacks and I could NEVER get them in line. They insisted on massive volume, and could not understand the concept of leaving a little sonic space. Of course, stage volume was completely out of control, and they always complained of not being able to hear themselves. Of course, the only solution that made sense to them was to turn up. They refused to even try things like tilting the cabs back so that they were actually pointing at their ears and not their knees ("but....my TONE!"). Whenever I tried to get them to even consider things like side firing the amps, or using smaller amps and letting the PA do it's job, or other such things, it was always met with huge resistance. I tried to reason with them, to explain that they needed to let the PA do it's job, that there were countless examples of guys with HUGE tone that were in fact using low-watt single 12" amps miced properly, that lots of players (some of their own heroes) would point there amps toward the wall or even have it offstage - but no way, they HAD to have monster amps blasting at all times. Hell, they even wanted to try each having TWO cabs (on on each side of the stage for both of them). This was often on small stages and in clubs with less than 100 patrons. Did we have feedback problems too? Yep. Anyway, I'm sure many of you can relate.

 

So.

 

The two guitar guys formed another band. A three piece, with one of them playing bass. Tonight was their first gig and I went to check them out. I talked to them before they went on, and was informed that they had a bit of a problem at soundcheck. It seems that there was a nasty power spike in the club and it fried BOTH of the guitar player's amps. (Yes, he was running TWO half stacks, a Marshall and a Mesa). Well, they had to make something work, and all they had available was a tiny little VOX "bedroom" amp that had one tube and one speaker (which I'm pretty sure was a 6", at most an 8"). So they parked that little guy on top of the piece of furniture that had been a 4x12 cab, miced it up, and crossed their fingers.

 

You know where this is going, don't you?

 

Yep. The guitar sounded GREAT. In fact, better than I've ever heard that player before. And everyone in club seemed to be plenty happy with it. I asked the player in between sets what he thought, how satisified he was with being able to hear himself from onstage (he had no monitor by the way). He was perfectly fine with it, thought it worked great. All of the sudden they were both seeing how cool it could be to just have that one tiny little amp, how much easier it would be all the way around, how stage volume and feedback were much less of a problem, and how good it could sound.

 

So, how come I spent a couple of years BEGGING these guys to even just TRY something like this with zero success? Grrrrrrrrrrrr.

 

I'm cross posting this for my friends over on the Live Sound forum so that folks there can "enjoy" this story as well.

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I've always found that the best way to deal with guitards is just to plant the seeds. After planting just wait. When they think of it on their own,and it's their idea,it's the greatest thing since sliced bread! But if you try to hammer a point into them,they will react just like the immature prima-donnas that most of them are!!!

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My current singer/guitarist resisted doing the DI/IEM thing until his amp blew up.

 

Then he was forced to start using the DI and IEMs. That was two months ago and I haven't seen him with a guitar amp since.

 

I can appreciate guitarists wanting to have a nice tube tone, but I'll never understand the need for a 100 watt halfstack.

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