Best practices for a better sound on stage

Author: GregPublished:

How to really optimize the sound of your live shows and work collaboratively with your sound engineer.

Good performance starts with great sound. Take the time to work closely with your sound engineer before, during and after the show

1️⃣ Before the show

  • 💬 Clear communication : Before the concert, discuss expectations, technical details, and share your sound preferences with your sound engineer. The smoother the communication, the better the sound will match your vision.
  • 🤝 Work closely with your sound engineer : Define together the elements of the mix to highlight, tell them what you need in your monitors and create the patch list together.
  • 📖 Know your equipment : Rehearsals are the perfect time to familiarize yourself with the specifics of your instruments and gear. This greatly facilitates the work of the sound engineer. If you use special effects, pedals, or other gadgets, share these details with your engineer for a seamless integration into the mix. All of this will save you time when you're on stage.

2️⃣ During sound check

  • Be fast : The less time you spend, the more time you will have to fine-tune your sound. Repeat these actions in rehearsals if necessary, do not leave room for improvisation or experimentation, you must know how your equipment works. And don't stand still when you are ready and go help your friends set up !
  • 🗯️ Be disciplined : no one likes to take a big, very loud china cymbal when we have the nose glued to a drum kit while placing a microphone. It's the best way to annoy the sound engineer! This also applies to musicians who never stop playing when they're ready... This blocks communication and wastes everyone's time. Remember that the sound engineer is the only one who can make your music sound good (or not). You better be kind to him.
  • ❤️ Be respectful : Be polite, courteous and if it’s someone you just met, remember their first name (Basic, but no one likes to be called "hey, uh... dude!").
  • 😇 Be humble : Trust them, they probably know the acoustics of the venue better than you. If they ask you to turn down the volume on your amp, do it, it's probably for the best
  • 🔊 Respect sound levels : It can be tempting to push the amps to the max, but this can compromise sound quality and comfort. Work with your engineer to maintain balanced levels for an enjoyable sonic experience for the crowd.

3️⃣ After the show

  • 👂 Get some feedback : Go talk to people, ask them what they thought of the sound of your show. If you agree and something didn’t sound as you imagined, don’t hesitate to provide feedback. It's a partnership, and constant adjustment ensures optimal performance.

Make sure every beat and note is crystal clear. A smooth sound balance sets the stage for an unforgettable show. Your music deserves to be heard perfectly! 🎸🤘

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