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About Shaster

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    Vancouver, BC
  1. Every once in a while I play a song that moves someone in the audience so much, that they come up and tell me. I remember the time I played We're All alone (Boz Scaggs) and a lady came up to tell me how much that song meant to her (at length). I've always thought that reaching people on a deep emotional level was the ultimate. Think I might have changed my mind on that one. The other day I was at a function and I was really mixing it up.... Black Magic Woman, On The Sunny Side Of The Street, The Wind Cries Mary, King Of The Road, I Don't Need No Doctor and so on. I also played How Deep Is Your Love by the BEE GEEs. Afterwards a guy came up (with what I later realized were tears in his eyes) and mentioned something about his wedding and so on. At first I thought he was making fun of the song (even though I play it more like Tommy Emmanuel's version it's still kinda sugary) but I realized he wasn't joking. It sort of made me uncomfortable. I mean it's good it brought back good memories and such, but I'm so used to people staring at their phones while they're doing their best to ignore me, that I didn't know how to deal with real emotions. Go ahead and share if you've had similar experiences.
  2. Thanks for the info and gear assessments. I was going to use a laptop for a hard wired connection, but I like the tablet adapter idea much better.
  3. Very cool. I like the fact that's he's actually singing and not whispering like so many kids are doing today. I heard a kid whisper singing Brown Eyed Girl the other day.- It sounded silly. This young fellow seems like he's really into it, and hopefully, he'll grab the bull by the horns and continue to make good music. Much success to him, and good on ya for taking the time to get him started on his journey.
  4. The FB dinner posts are quite amusing, as are all the other mundane posts, like "cleaning my kitchen, or mowing my grass" entries. Do I care, apparently many people figure I do. Oh well. In my area, a lot of useful and sometimes critical posts about music, gigs, musician's health, issues with club owners and so on are only shared on FB. As well, my agency posts on FB if they need a specialty act or have a last minute cancellation they can't fill. Some clubs here won't even hire you if you don't have a substantial FB presence. I've also heard of people approaching a promoter, only to have the promoter say, well let's see how many likes you get on your next gig promo - if you get over a hundred, I'll consider working with you. Like I said, I get direct gig offers a few times a year. Got one a week or two ago. Nice gig, early hours, twenty minutes from home, I couldn't do it, but it was a good offer - and only on FB. I understand and applaud taking the moral high ground, but I guess I'll have to build my good karma some other way.
  5. Funny you should ask... The first gig in question is a small room. Holds Maybe 125 to 150 people. PA is behind the band (on stage) as is the double 18" sub. It's a horror show for many, but I'm used to adverse conditions, so even with just a MixWiz I've been able to get sound good enough to please the very picky guys in the band. I set up the XR16, get things dialed in pretty quickly - sounds good, although I kind of prefer the A&H, but then again, I've lived with that board and similar ones for a long time. Everything is great during sound check. I mute the channels, and come back at 8:30 to get things fired up. No connection. I tried several times, finally got connected and quickly unmute the channels - and that was it. No further connection for the night. Luckily I knew the room very well and had a pretty nice sound during the sound check. BTW, one of the things I do is set the PA louder than we might want it, then I turn it down if needs be. Thankfully, the mixer was set at my "louder than we might need" volume, and it was just right for the now full room. Of course, full was what caused the WiFi to stop working. Even with an external router, I don't know if I'll mute anything on a digital mixer. I might look to a physical way of killing the sound - it's just too risky otherwise. I think I'll bring my small A&H mixer as well, so I can at least get 6 channels of vocals, kick and horns in a pinch. Never felt so helpless. I had heard all the horror stories, but now I can join the club Router is the next stop for sure. I worked with one tech that had a router that looked like the CN Tower, but I don't want to go to overboard.
  6. In fairness to the X32 line, the problem mixer I mentioned, is AFAIK used everyday, and often by people that don't know what they're doing. For example, they have house mics, cables, stands and so on. One day I came in and they had moved the mic stands, and a staff member came up to me and said, "do you need the black thing?". These are often the people messing with the mixer, so who knows what goes wrong and why... Anyway, I'll stay with the Behringer stuff for now. The XR18 price just dropped over $200 in Canada so I've got one on order and will return my XR16. The Soundcraft stuff does still look very nice and maybe I'll jump in if I'm happy with the whole digital thing. got a seven piece band gig this weekend so we'll see how it goes.
  7. Thanks for the responses guys. I decided against the Mackie because they seem to be chasing their tail product wise (IMO) and I didn't like the look of their app. I would have been very interested in the Soundcraft but my preferred stores in my area were sold out - about eight of them. So I'm dipping my toes in the water with the XR16 (I've got gigs coming up soon so needed something quickly). I like the after market Android app, and if I like the unit I'll get an XR18 (or the Midas) and perhaps keep the XR16 and use it as back-up. Because I do a bunch of solo and duo gigs on the XR32 it made sense to stay with Behringer and their apps, although I really did like the looks of the Soundcraft.
  8. You mean you don't play Wasn't That A Party? This clip seems to be from the Irish Rover's Unicorn pub, although it's been closed for years now. At least a couple of the fellas sound Irish to me. IIRC the beer at the Unicorn was pretty good - but that pub was such a party, it was hard to remember anything the next day! EDIT: I just remembered that I knew the drummer that had the gig for a number of years. He's in Nashville now writing songs and such. Man the things you remember, out of the blue.
  9. I've worked with and still work with many drummers. There are only two or three that can play quietly even when things get "cooking". Of those, only two have great sounding mini kits that are one load - nothing like making multiple cart loads of drums to make an owner angry. Of those only one dresses like a guitar player (hat of some kind, black skinny jeans....) which goes a long way to calming a manager down. "See, he's a guitar player that plays a hi'hat"! Some drummers have the theory that if they bought it, they should bring it. That often means they don't get invited to the party. Of course this can apply to guitar players as well. BTW, I worked with this fellow in a trio some time ago. He brought hats, cymbal, snare and kick - that was it. Sounded fabulous. No ego about needing more even though he could have pulled an attitude. I won't name him 'cause he scares me Omg this link is hilarious if you're a student of Canadiana or old school TV. You might want to skip the intro to preserve your sanity and skip to about 17 minutes . Powder Blues, way back when... If you do check the link out and make it to the piano feature, notice the empty and full beer cups on Mr. Mc Caulder's piano. TV or no, he was gonna have his beer - that's the Willie we know and love! Sorry were we talking about drums, guess I'm a bit OT.
  10. So I think I kind of get it. Although the ZLX are fine for what they are, are you maybe thinking you want something with a little more street cred and capabilities? Maybe you want to stay with EV but move up a series or two. Yamaha, QSC, JBL are also all respected brands with higher grade MI products. If you wanted to step up to professional grade I don't know that you would get your money out - maybe but maybe not. Not sure what is hot in your market but that could also be a factor. Also, f you're doing the occasional DJ you would need a sub unless you picked up a pair of Yorkville Parasource 15's. I've used them many times and they are one of my favourite "run of the mill" cabinet, and the bottom you can get out of them is amazing. Might be the wrong speaker for your area, as they are Canadian. Service might be an issue - or not, who knows. Note that the 4400 watts is peak not continuous. They are probably closer to 700 watts. https://www.long-mcquade.com/21681/Pro-Audio---Recording/PA-Speaker-Cabinets/Yorkville-Sound/Parasource-4400-Watt-Peak-15-Inch-Horn-Active-PA-Cabinet.htm
  11. How's your sight reading! I know of three or four piano players that do a bunch of gigs with mainly female singers that want to perform, but don't have the time or talent to make charts, rehearse and so on. So these guys do their charts (and charge them the going rate) and play their gigs. One rehearsal a few days before the gig. I see the same piano players' names pop up all over town. Each singer does a few gigs per year, promote the heck out of their gigs, and it seems like every gig is just another advertisement and enticement for other (mainly) female singers to go out and do the same thing. I have done a few of these types of gigs on guitar, but because I sing, I generally want to do the gig all myself and keep all the money :} I have a guitar player friend that does do a bunch of these gigs, and of course he's even more portable than a keyboard. Sometimes in one month, he's doing the same venue with different singers. It's a great way to generate gigs, because somebody else does all the work for you, but like I said, this really only works if you can read well and possibly prepare charts. A few of the guys I know doing these gigs, cross platforms and take the singer into the studio. Then the singer has a CD and wants to promote it by doing a few gigs, then they want to do another CD. Some guys start with the recording, and then the singer wants to play live.All the while you're helping folks realize their dreams albeit on a small scale. BTW I know an instrumental duo that has a Friday and Saturday gig, that just hires the best singers in town each week. The venue is happy because they do nothing in the way of promo or booking - the band and the guest singer do all of that. The band is happy, the singers are happy. Anyway, a bunch of things to consider if the gigs are getting light.
  12. Will these be run by you or your techs, or rented to anyone? Are these replacing a rental stock, or are you just starting out? Along those lines, do you want one pair two, three...? How long is your amortization period, or return on investment length of time? Do you want them paid in three months, a year or? Are you located near repair facilities or would you have to ship out? When you say A/V hire use, do you mean church events or Club Nights featuring DJ Eee Dee M? What's your preferred price point?
  13. Thanks for the info. AFAIK the Soundcraft uses a web browser to operate; apparently any web browser. I reckon all of the three units I mentioned would need a more powerful router, if you wanted to mix from a significant distance Although, I can get forty or fifty feet away with the iPod for the house venue X32R and it's not a problem - no external router. Don't know why the venue in question is having problems with the Behringer X32R, but I've heard the Midas versions are better, even if they're ostensibly the same animal. I'll keep working on this, and see where I get.
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