googled06bb313055e587a.html Rock N Roll Rehab for the Control Of Rock and Roll Starring Greg Piper and The Tooners: Rock N Roll Soundcheck

Rock N Roll Soundcheck

A Rock N Roll sound check is when you perform portions of your show during rehearsal on the day of your show to make sure you, as an artist, are comfortable with the Rock N Roll sound on stage while ensuring your house Rock N Roll sound, what the audience hears, is great, too. Doing a Rock N Roll sound check is essential!  You'll want to include every instrument you will be playing or different effect pedals you may be using.  In the next few paragraphs I will break down what is most important and how to go about getting it right.

Rock N Roll sound check!
In my traveling, gigging situations we leave our amps, keyboards and drums at home. We never play the same amp twice and am always working with different personnel.  Why not bring my own audio man and my own amps and drums on the road, you may ask?  BECAUSE I DON'T WANT TO WORK FOR FREE!  Do you know how much it costs to fly amps, drums and keyboards from one city to the next?  Do you know how much it costs to fly a tech man, pay him and give him hotel rooms?  TOO MUCH!!!  That being said, I quickly learned how to efficiently and successfully do a Rock N Roll sound check in a matter of 2 hours or less using other people's gear and dealing with strangers running the board, as long as the gear is in place when the band arrives.  These gigs supply the amps, drums, keyboards and tech personnel.  It saves me money to just have the band show up with their guitars and drum sticks and work with the gear supplied.  We don't get paid more to bring extra people or gear, so why would we bring extra personnel  when we can get the audio right with what is supplied?

I've had tons of experience doing this.  You'd be surprised how some of the most seasoned players just don't understand the importance of a Rock N Roll sound check. It's so much easier to be in a famous or well paid band who usually bring along their own gear and tech personnel.  Piece of Cake!  But, even they have to do a Rock N Roll sound check.

Rock N Roll sound check! Rock N Roll Forever!
Let's get down to it.  There are lots of variables that can affect audio, like temperature, atmospheric pressure, humidity, the room ambiance, the musician's hearing, positioning of your amps, the strength of your voice that day, and much more.  While you're tuning up and getting your sounds in order, the first thing you want to get right is what you hear in your monitor.  This is what you hear on stage while you're playing.  Your monitor mix has absolutely nothing to do with what the audience hears.  This is for you and only you!   One at a time each musician takes their turn making sure what they hear in their monitor is what they want.  Some players prefer to just hear their own vocal in their monitor.  Since some player's amps are right behind them, they usually don't need to hear that in their monitor, either.  If playing in a big room I may add some drums and lead vocal and whatever else is needed to stay in sync with the other performers.  Some musicians prefer to hear everybody and everything equally in their monitor.  Whatever works for you is fine.

Rock N Roll
After the whole band gets their monitor and instruments sounding as they like it, it's time to do a house check.  During your monitor check the tech personnel are already starting to adjust the house but they are probably NOT familiar with  what you want the audience to hear.  This is a 2 step process.  I go out to the house to make it sound good (without me playing) and then someone else from the band goes out and listens while I'm playing.  If the final mix is good for both of us, mission accomplished.

The key to a good Rock N Roll sound check is to pick 5 or 6 different songs featuring different instrumentation or volumes or vocal harmonies.  Use these same songs every time for consistency, focus and efficiency.  Make sure the lead vocals are on top of the music, the harmonies are set to your liking and the solos, drums and all instruments are properly balanced.  I am not an EQ by the numbers kind of guy, instead going more by what I hear.  I may ask the technician to give me more "clarity" on the vocals, or make the kick drum feel more "punchy" or "less boomy".  Be sure to have a mixture of types of songs to hear; a rocking song, a ballad, an acoustic song, a song with harmonies and a song with solos, etc.

Rock N Roll Lives!
It can't be emphasized enough how important it is for the musicians on stage to play during the rehearsal check exactly what they will be playing during the show.  Same instrument, same feel, same lick.  After all, that is what a Rock N Roll sound check is all about.  Too many times musicians ask for adjustments AFTER the rehearsal, which can really mess things up.  What if the technician accidentally presses the wrong button or messes with another musician's settings?  IT HAPPENS ALL THE TIME!  Don't be a bone-head or guitar hero by "trying" a different guitar during the Rock N Roll sound check than you normally use during the show.  You're supposed to be rehearsing exactly what you'll be playing for your evening performance.  This is not the time for experimentation or showing-off your new ax.  Save that for rehearsals!

Rock N Roll Sound Check
You'll often find the Rock N Roll sound is way different at showtime then it did during rehaearsal.  This could be for many reasons . . . Things were changed . . . a room full of people will dampen and dramatically change what you hear on stage . . . maybe one of the musicians is playing louder or softer because their adrenaline is flowing  . . . With time and experience you'll know how to make adjustments and deal with this.  This is why it's best to keep your monitor mix as simple as possible.  If it seems a little low at showtime you can simply signal the audio tech to make your voice louder in your monitor by pointing to your mouth and and then pointing up, meaning make your voice in your louder.  Simple!!!

Rock N Roll, Dude!
Sometimes the tech personnel will tell you your guitar or bass is too loud for the room.  A simple fix for this is to turn down and/or put some of your guitar audio in your monitor.  EASY FIX!  my guitar player's amps are aimed upward toward their heads and not aimed directly to the audience.  This makes the musician hear their instrument better and not blast the audience at the same time.  It also makes it much easier to blend the guitars through the main PA for a better balance and listening experience.

Rock N Roll Most Important Tip!
Remember, When the Rock N Roll sound check is over, DON'T CHANGE ANYTHING!  What you hear on stage is not at all what the audience hears.  You have to make yourself happy and be able to hear yourself on stage while at the same time make the sound for your audience awesome.  It's very challenging.  It's Rock n Roll!  Keep on Rockin' and Let's Rock, Rock N Roll forever! Rock N for the love of it, baby!

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