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#61
17th July 2013
Old 17th July 2013
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Ohh, how could I forget?!
There was a death metal gig I was mixing monitors for at ANU where the lead singer decided to stick a pigs head on a spare mic stand. As one would do, I took it off between songs and took the stand back stage to clean. During this time the douchbag "singer" decided to kick 4 xw12 wedges off the front of the stage.

At this point, I decided to take all the rest of the wedges off stage, mute the monitor desk, turn the amps off and go sit at the bar for the night!
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#62
17th July 2013
Old 17th July 2013
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Originally Posted by M.D.M. View Post
I was working a show for Meshell Ndegeocello. It was my first show and of course my first time on the board (I don't know why they let me on it, I was just a stage hand with a lot of home production experience). long story short, I solo'ed an empty channel mid song and had no idea why I couldn't hear anything or how to stop it. Meshell was really cool however and played it off like it was an intentional break. I stopped the entire show until someone that knew what they were doing showed up and fixed my idiotic rookie screw up.
If that's what happened, then the console was not hooked up correctly. FOH should be fed off the main outputs, not the control room outputs. In a properly configured system, the solo function should have zero impact on what the audience hears, otherwise, that function would be completely useless.

-Dan.
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#63
17th July 2013
Old 17th July 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iluvatar View Post
If that's what happened, then the console was not hooked up correctly. FOH should be fed off the main outputs, not the control room outputs. In a properly configured system, the solo function should have zero impact on what the audience hears, otherwise, that function would be completely useless.
...Well, that depends on the board:

Some boards ARE set up so that the solo-in-place and mutes are indeed active on the main 2-mix output.

...Now granted, that configuration makes a whole lot more sense on a recording console than it might in a live situation; but that still doesn't change the fact in certain circumstances you might very well run into this situation, and should probably be prepared for it.
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#64
18th July 2013
Old 18th July 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 12ax7 View Post
...Well, that depends on the board:

Some boards ARE set up so that the solo-in-place and mutes are indeed active on the main 2-mix output.

...Now granted, that configuration makes a whole lot more sense on a recording console than it might in a live situation; but that still doesn't change the fact in certain circumstances you might very well run into this situation, and should probably be prepared for it.
.
Ah, thank you. I've never used that function (though I'd still argue that this is a case of the desk being configured incorrectly for the particular gig)

-Dan.
#65
18th July 2013
Old 18th July 2013
  #65
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I've actually started using SiP a lot more recently, I think it's a bit more accurate (and faster) to hear the channel through the PA than trying to tune your headphones so that they are somewhat accurate. Obviously you want to have cans at the ready for any issues during the show, or problem channels that you don't want popping in the mains, but for soundchecks, I don't shy away from SiP anymore.
#66
18th July 2013
Old 18th July 2013
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Originally Posted by Jhana View Post
I've actually started using SiP a lot more recently, I think it's a bit more accurate (and faster) to hear the channel through the PA than trying to tune your headphones so that they are somewhat accurate. Obviously you want to have cans at the ready for any issues during the show, or problem channels that you don't want popping in the mains, but for soundchecks, I don't shy away from SiP anymore.
Yeah, I imagine it would be useful for that sort of thing. Would encourage other band members to shut up while you're checking other instruments at the very least

The first desk I really mixed on years and years ago was a big assed DDA desk - great desk for the time, can't remember the exact model. But it was from that desk that I figured out what SiP was and why I never wanted to have it switched on
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#67
21st July 2013
Old 21st July 2013
  #67
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A few years back I was an A2 for a 4th of July celebration show in a town North of Boston. It started to downpour 10 minutes before the scheduled shoot time for the fireworks. They had to blast off all the fireworks at once essentially because the fireworks can't get wet. It was really something to see...After the show we were breaking down and our lovable stage manager slipped on the wet stage, fell four feet and his spine landed on a stake that was holding the scaff for the mains down. They took him away in an ambulance and we all felt bad. We didn't hear from him until the next year but he was back and seemed fine. Scary
#68
22nd July 2013
Old 22nd July 2013
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It was so cold once my hands froze.
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#69
22nd July 2013
Old 22nd July 2013
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mistaking the mute buttons for solo buttons...
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#70
23rd July 2013
Old 23rd July 2013
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Posted this a while back somewhere else, still sums up last years efforts pretty well:
Large scale event, 4 hangs of PA, 2 tonnes per hang. The bar the motors were rigged off of failed and the welds cracked, it held but we had to drop the PA in instantly. Had to replace all the bars with higher grade steel I beams... 20 hour bump in.

A different gig: 30mm of rain in 15 minutes, mass flooding onsite and site shut down, mid gig, broadcast worldwide. (Happened 2 years in a row)

Pyrotechnics going off in the wrong direction in an arena, catching fire to a gac span (luckily fireproof)

1500 litre per minute (tonne and a half per minute) water cannon aimed and fired directly at a barge full of amplifiers, lights and subs, luckily tarped the amps just prior to this happening, lights not so lucky.

Just last weekend; semi trailer came through the wrong entry point into a venue, clipped a heritage listed tree, got 3 metres of the pan stuck under said tree and the roof had to be cut off my police rescue, blocking 2 lanes of traffic.
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#71
23rd July 2013
Old 23rd July 2013
  #71
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Couple that come to mind from many years ago:

Electrocuted myself with phantom. We've all done this before, but I had to pick a terrible time: in the wings, with an entire wind band of 12-18 year olds on the stage waiting for a soloist to finish. Changing a mic over, in a hurry. The cable had one of the switchcraft-type XLR connectors which was missing the grub screw that holds the cover on. Yanked the cable, cover comes off, hand hits the terminals... I'm sure the audience wondered what the band found so funny.

Lesson: If a cable is broken, fix it or don't use it.

Another red-faced moment: Was providing a couple of speakers mics for my high school's prizegiving. Forgot to change the battery in the radio handheld before the show. I'm being given a prize during the show, and the stage manager is so super organised he has everyone seated in the order that the prizes are being given out. So there I am, stuck in the middle of a sea of people, tightly packed so there's no way I'm getting out with anything remotely resembling subtlety. Half way through the show, of course, the battery in the radio decides to give up. But it's not going to go quietly, oh no. The dying mic lets out this horrendous noise, almost like a deflating balloon, to announce it's departure. And I'm stuck there, unable to do anything about it. Wanted to hide under my chair after that one. The worst part was, the award I was begin given that night was to thank me for my years of running and maintaining the school PA equipment.

Lesson: Fresh batteries before every gig. Always.

Oh, or the time the stage manager decided to 'help' me during derigging by moving a digital piano on his own. He put it on a flatbed trolley and attempted to wheel it out the hall by himself. In the process of trying to open a door for himself, he knocks it, and because this flatbed isn't really big enough for it, it tips over. I'm on stage coiling cables at this point, so I'm left watching helplessly from the other end of the hall as a grand+ worth of digital piano topples over and is damaged beyond repair. I still feel guilty about that one, it wasn't really my fault but I really should have spotted what the idiot was doing and told him to stop. It took a year to get that piano replaced.

Lesson: Make sure you keep an eye on the 'help'.
#72
24th July 2013
Old 24th July 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ARCV View Post
The cable had one of the switchcraft-type XLR connectors which was missing the grub screw that holds the cover on. Yanked the cable, cover comes off, hand hits the terminals...
Promoting XLR Neutrik connectors = reliable cabling.. the strain relief mechanism is super reliable and no miniature screws !

no tools required
#73
24th July 2013
Old 24th July 2013
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I just volunteered to mix a funeral next week where I get to watch a friend bury his 6 year old son. I'd rather blow up 100 shows than get the opportunity to do this again.

-Dan.
#74
24th July 2013
Old 24th July 2013
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Originally Posted by iluvatar View Post
I just volunteered to mix a funeral next week where I get to watch a friend bury his 6 year old son.
Sheesh...
#75
24th July 2013
Old 24th July 2013
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Back in the late 80's was mixing a glam rock cover band in a bar in Baltimore. One of the local residents called the cops complaining that the music was too loud coming from the club. Cops came in and walked right over to me bypassing the club manager and told me to turn it down. I complied and they went away. About 5 minutes later they came back and said it was still too loud and I have to turn it down some more. At that point I turn the mains all the way down. He said it still wasn't enough. I explained that what he was hearing was coming from the stage and I had no control over it. So to prove it I shut the board off. After about 15-20 seconds the band realized the monitors were not working and they stopped playing. The cops left and I started to pack up since I figured the gig was done. A few minutes later they came back in and told me I was under arrest for disorderly conduct and took me down town to be booked. The band had to pack up my stuff.

Was doing another gig at a place called Hammerjacks. The FOH was on a second floor balcony. A mic cable came unplugged during the show and the monitor guy didn't see it. I couldn't get his attention so I decided to run back to the stage and fix it myself. I had to go down a flight of stairs to get there. The stairway was dark and being in a rush I was skipping steps. When I got to the bottom I slipped and twisted my ankle. I got up and hobbled over to the monitor guy and told him to fix it. Then, being the die-hard I was back then, hobbled back up to the FOH and finished the show with my foot propped up on a bar stool. After the show someone from the club drove me over to the hospital. I was down for weeks.
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#76
24th July 2013
Old 24th July 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by erlohr View Post
Back in the late 80's was mixing a glam rock cover band in a bar in Baltimore. One of the local residents called the cops complaining that the music was too loud coming from the club. Cops came in and walked right over to me bypassing the club manager and told me to turn it down. I complied and they went away. About 5 minutes later they came back and said it was still too loud and I have to turn it down some more. At that point I turn the mains all the way down. He said it still wasn't enough. I explained that what he was hearing was coming from the stage and I had no control over it. So to prove it I shut the board off. After about 15-20 seconds the band realized the monitors were not working and they stopped playing. The cops left and I started to pack up since I figured the gig was done. A few minutes later they came back in and told me I was under arrest for disorderly conduct and took me down town to be booked. The band had to pack up my stuff.

Was doing another gig at a place called Hammerjacks. The FOH was on a second floor balcony. A mic cable came unplugged during the show and the monitor guy didn't see it. I couldn't get his attention so I decided to run back to the stage and fix it myself. I had to go down a flight of stairs to get there. The stairway was dark and being in a rush I was skipping steps. When I got to the bottom I slipped and twisted my ankle. I got up and hobbled over to the monitor guy and told him to fix it. Then, being the die-hard I was back then, hobbled back up to the FOH and finished the show with my foot propped up on a bar stool. After the show someone from the club drove me over to the hospital. I was down for weeks.
A couple of beauties there
#77
25th July 2013
Old 25th July 2013
  #77
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Quote:
Originally Posted by erlohr View Post
Back in the late 80's was mixing a glam rock cover band in a bar in Baltimore. One of the local residents called the cops complaining that the music was too loud coming from the club. Cops came in and walked right over to me bypassing the club manager and told me to turn it down. I complied and they went away. About 5 minutes later they came back and said it was still too loud and I have to turn it down some more. At that point I turn the mains all the way down. He said it still wasn't enough. I explained that what he was hearing was coming from the stage and I had no control over it. So to prove it I shut the board off. After about 15-20 seconds the band realized the monitors were not working and they stopped playing. The cops left and I started to pack up since I figured the gig was done. A few minutes later they came back in and told me I was under arrest for disorderly conduct and took me down town to be booked. The band had to pack up my stuff.

Was doing another gig at a place called Hammerjacks. The FOH was on a second floor balcony. A mic cable came unplugged during the show and the monitor guy didn't see it. I couldn't get his attention so I decided to run back to the stage and fix it myself. I had to go down a flight of stairs to get there. The stairway was dark and being in a rush I was skipping steps. When I got to the bottom I slipped and twisted my ankle. I got up and hobbled over to the monitor guy and told him to fix it. Then, being the die-hard I was back then, hobbled back up to the FOH and finished the show with my foot propped up on a bar stool. After the show someone from the club drove me over to the hospital. I was down for weeks.
you hero!

did they actually charge you with anything? not saying you weren't cooperative but did they get peeved because they felt they had been made to look stupid when you said thats coming from the stage?
#78
25th July 2013
Old 25th July 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by erlohr View Post
The cops left and I started to pack up since I figured the gig was done. A few minutes later they came back in and told me I was under arrest for disorderly conduct and took me down town to be booked. The band had to pack up my stuff.
If this lead to a criminal record, I'd be super pissed !

I remember hearing a similar story from Big Mick Hughes about dropping the master fader on a Metallica show.. though the cops never booked him, It seems that they understood that 90% of the sound was stage bleed at that point.
#79
25th July 2013
Old 25th July 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Electrolytic View Post
you hero!

did they actually charge you with anything? not saying you weren't cooperative but did they get peeved because they felt they had been made to look stupid when you said thats coming from the stage?
I spent the rest of the night in jail. Saw the judge in the morning and he let me go with no bail. I got a lawyer and went to court and was found not guilty. It was more of a hassle than anything else. I guess I was just the "example" that night.
#80
25th July 2013
Old 25th July 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jetboatguy View Post
If this lead to a criminal record, I'd be super pissed !

I remember hearing a similar story from Big Mick Hughes about dropping the master fader on a Metallica show.. though the cops never booked him, It seems that they understood that 90% of the sound was stage bleed at that point.
I was found not guilty, so no record.

A few years later I ran into a very similar situation while on tour with another band. I was at the board mixing on the club's system when I saw the cops walk in. I told the tour manager I wasn't going to go through this again and I left and went in the bus until they left. Thinking back on it, I probably overacted on that one.
#81
25th July 2013
Old 25th July 2013
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Late 80s in front of about 500 people in a discoteque. Started the backing tracks from a tape recorder, the singer started singing, the audience started clapping their hands, everything was going well. Suddenly the music stops and the tape recorder started to fast forward to the next song. I had accidently pushed a button that played 15 seconds from every song, instead of pushing the normal play button. The risk of having a too advanced tape recorder.

Once I managed to reverse the tape, restart it, give the guy doing the lights a sign to start from the beginning, the magic was lost. The next show we did, I really carefully made sure to push the right button.
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#82
26th July 2013
Old 26th July 2013
  #82
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I had probably one of the technically worst gigs of my life last night. I'm the drummer in my band and use a pair of Sennheiser 280s for my monitor mix, anyways, apparently at some point my aux send on the mixer got completely messed up, so bad that I basically only had A LOT of rhythm guitar. Couldn't even hear the click over it. But that wasn't the worst bit, because I fixed that.

The worst bit was the recording. Now, I really wanted to get the audio from this gig, so I had the mixer all wired to send individual outputs to my interface, plus a feed from the main mix to my 4 track field recorder (that I've owned for a day). Recording off the board worked flawlessly, the flaw was that no one plugged in the drum mics off the snake to the interface, so we got no drum tracks, plus the backup recording (field recorder's mics + main mix) never recorded anything because you need to hit the record button twice for it to actually record.
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#83
26th July 2013
Old 26th July 2013
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speaking of incidents with the cops.. about 2005 I was a mixing an outdoor event and some girl climbs into the audio booth asking me to page someone cause the cops are looking for them.

I was like, why ? what happened ?
she said there was a car accident in the parking lot and the name she gave me to page over the PA was.. MY NAME wtf ?

so I turned to my stage hand and said, here's your big break, you're up mixing.

when I was led to the parking lot.. my black shiny Turbo Volvo 850 was pinned to a brick curb and the passenger side doors were all dented and ****ed up from a Hyundai collision.. the lady driver was kinda hysterical, I think she was on meds or somethin'.. turns out I knew the cop, he knew I was probably mixing show and he knew my ride.. which explains the girl climbing in the booth scenario.

anyways,
I ended up scrapping that car.. the entire suspension was completely ****ed up.. bought a Turbo Wagon instead.. which I recently retired.
#84
26th July 2013
Old 26th July 2013
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haha
This didn't happen to me, but it was defs this musos worst live situation!
My fathers wedding, we arrive at the house for the massive reception, the muso has parked his car in the swimming pool! hahahaha!
He still finished the gig...
#85
29th July 2013
Old 29th July 2013
  #85
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Output section of board died during main speech of 4000 person company Christmas party.
One output channel after the other ... At least we got a new board after that (the one that died was 15 years old but boss didn't want to replace it although we all said it may die anytime)

Stupid error from me: mixing a traditional vienniese ball for 5000 people. Start of ball is some orchestra playing and than opening speech. Orchestra plays, sounds ok, I mix on headphones as mixing desk is in worst position possible (on balcony, 60 meters from stage in the corner of balcony, room with 5 seconds of reverb). Than speech begins. I see speaker at the lectern, but no sound...so I think maybe he waits some seconds till all eyes are on him...( this distance I don't see his mouth moving)
When I see my colleague on stage running to the lectern I guess something is wrong. And it is: I have the main output muted, so no sound to the pa...daaaaam!
#86
13th August 2013
Old 13th August 2013
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Didn't happen to me, but just saw empire of the sun at wilderness fest, and the whole stage power cut off 3 mins into the first song. I have a feeling the FoH triggered a decibel meter which cut the power, cos when they managed to restart everything it was all a bit quieter!

Didn't stay for the whole gig as the mix was terrible - flabby subs and incomprehensible vocals. Shame, as I really liked their album.
#87
13th August 2013
Old 13th August 2013
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Reminds me of that time I saw half a FoH stack tip over about 15 minutes into a Billy Corgan gig, taking the power for an iMac or two with it. Don't know how nobody got crushed with that one.
#88
13th August 2013
Old 13th August 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kaoz View Post
Reminds me of that time I saw half a FoH stack tip over about 15 minutes into a Billy Corgan gig, taking the power for an iMac or two with it. Don't know how nobody got crushed with that one.
That is terrifying. One of my worst fears being onstage is heavy stuff falling on my head.

Which reminds me of the time a drummer hit the snare on the last note of the gig and let the sticks go. He was stage right, I was stage left, quite far apart, but both upstage at the back. Next thing I know, his drumstick landed tip down on the top of my head! And it bloody hurt!
#89
13th August 2013
Old 13th August 2013
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I was doing live sound at a well known venue in Memphis years ago. During sound check the bands singer asked for more more vox in his monitors. Ok,, easy enough.... Nothing.

So I start tracking cables and what not... 10 mins later still nothing.

Out of frustration I smacked the mixing desk (I was 17 - forgive me) and there was a loud pop and the monitors suddenly jumped into life.

And...

About 6-7 cockroaches came running out of the back of the desk.

The same venue also slashed the tires of a tour van belonging to a major-ish label band, after refusing to pay the band.

Classy place.
#90
13th August 2013
Old 13th August 2013
  #90
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Originally Posted by Deleted User View Post
My worst experience, was on a newer, now popular digital desk. The control surface stopped responding throughout the night randomly. It worked great for 1 minute, then stopped. Reset, worked great for 30 seconds then stopped...

It never stopped passing audio, it just wouldn't respond to changes I was making.

I would tell you what desk it was, but I got yelled at for bad mouthing it back a bit by a worthless wannabe punter, so I'm not going to name it. (It is the super squishy sounding, feature packed digital desk with wanna be midas preamps...)

That company needs to spend a bit less on buying good reviews, and more on actually making a good desk.

It now lives in my unacceptable list, where as before, I wanted to like it.



If I get a call saying I have to use that desk, we either don't play the show or another desk gets hired. It is that bad.

Local band/production company? Fine. If you like shit sound.

Not acceptable for a professional act that values good sound.

But they built a huge repair facility in Vegas.
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