Sound check at The Donkey

The Donkey is a small pub around the south of Leicester. The pub has only one room where the bar is as well as the stage, which takes up about a quarter of the room itself.

The gig was set to start at 9:00pm so the sound check was started at 7:00pm. The gig consisted of three acts. The opening act was that of an acoustic guitar player singing, then a two-piece band with one playing an electro-acoustic guitar as well as singing and the other playing a cello. The headlining band was a five-piece folk band, which had lead singer (playing a bouzouki and a violin) two backing singers (one playing an electro-acoustic guitar and the other playing an electric keyboard), a drummer and a bassist.

As the engineer it’s helpful to known who is playing as microphones and amps can be set-up before the bands arrive. In this case there were three vocalists so three microphones were placed at the front of the stage.

The first to be sound checked was the headlining band, which arrived first to the venue. The sound engineer greeted them and introduced himself with a smile on his face. This was shown as an example of how to make a good first impression with the performers. It’s important to do this because as the sound engineer you want to get along with the performers so that sound checking becomes easier for both parties. In addition to introducing yourself, there’s also the case of talking and making sure everything is good for the performer whilst sound checking to make sure everything is just as the performer wants so they are comfortable and sound the best they can.

One thing that is essential when sound checking is the speed at which it is done. Having two hours before the doors open can go by quickly, so making sure everything is working and sounding good with time to spare makes running the sound a lot easier. The speed at which the sound check is done can be dependent on the band, with a more experienced and professional band knowing what they’re doing and knowing how they should sound compared to an amateur band, which might not know how things work.

The Stage before set up

The Stage before set up

The Allen & Heath PA20 mixing desk

The Allen & Heath PA20 mixing desk

The dbx DriveRack PX and  Chevon Research A3000 P.A. Power Amp

The dbx DriveRack PX and
Chevon Research A3000 P.A. Power Amp

3k Logic system X15 Mark 2 (stage right)

3k Logic system X15 Mark 2 (stage right)

3k Logic system X15 Mark 2 (stage left)

3k Logic system X15 Mark 2 (stage left)

Stage set up and ready

Stage set up and ready

WBL = 4 Hours

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