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what's the worst thing that happened to you in a live situation
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Stelios_Drk
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#1
7th July 2013
Old 7th July 2013
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what's the worst thing that happened to you in a live situation

come on.share your worst experiences.both technical and sound engineering stuff!

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#2
7th July 2013
Old 7th July 2013
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First time in front of 5000 people, no monitoring on the floor, in ear monitoring fails on the first song....and then a couple of times more later on, dont even remember how I managed to sing it through and survive.... Not the worst but a very bad one as I remember
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7th July 2013
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People dying. It doesn't get worse than that...
#4
7th July 2013
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Walked into a blown console and blew subs and power amps at SXSW
#5
7th July 2013
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As a performer: walking off stage early due to lightheadiness/near-fainting.
As a sound guy: macbook's internal cd drive got sick. playback backing tracks direct from cd played not even half way for the same group twice in the row.
#6
7th July 2013
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The bar was closed once.
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7th July 2013
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broken my wrist on stage, but kept playing !!
#8
7th July 2013
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Does anyone here really work live sound? Lol?
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7th July 2013
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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.
#10
7th July 2013
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^^ Was that when it was first released? I heard it had issues at the beginning, everything I hear from fellow engineers is good these days regarding its behaviour and usability though.

Haven't had to mix on one yet though, but playing around with it a while back it seemed pretty intuitive.
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7th July 2013
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Originally Posted by Kaoz View Post
^^ Was that when it was first released? I heard it had issues at the beginning, everything I hear from fellow engineers is good these days regarding its behaviour and usability though.

Haven't had to mix on one yet though, but playing around with it a while back it seemed pretty intuitive.
This was actually on a July 4th show. No idea if the desk was updated or not.

Doesn't matter, it was such a piece of shite, it's now on my unacceptable list.

Like I said, feature packed for the price, but not useable.


I've had issues with this desk since the first time I've seen one. I wanted to like it!!! It's just a piece of shit, and I hope more people start to see that, vs people being excited at the price.

The desk is built to a price. A cheap price.

It doesn't have midas preamps. They're "midas designed." If you tell Mercedes to build a $1500 car, they'll do it. I'm sorry for the engineers that had to design this desk. I'm sure they wanted to do a lot more, but had a low price point to deal with.

I mean fvck, if that desk actually has anything to do with the actual midas desks, avid just got a lifelong fan. Screw that level of sound quality. Avids profile and dshow desks don't sound squishy. Neither does the sc48. I know there's a big price difference, but don't cheapen the midas name by introducing a shit product claiming it to be designed by said name.

It's like introducing sandpaper as cottonelle bathroom tissue.
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7th July 2013
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I challenge behringer to a blind a b x test.

If I can tell which desk theirs is, they stop manufacturing them. (But continue support for the poor souls that bought one, or offer a refund)

If I can't, ill buy one of them... To give away to a youth program in need somewhere in the us.
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7th July 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper View Post
It's like introducing sandpaper as cottonelle bathroom tissue.


Fair call on everything else though. I as yet haven't seen one in use at a gig where I could judge the sound accurately, and tbh the people i've spoken to who say it sounds "good", aren't people whose opinion I give a lot of weight to.

Funnily enough, worked a gig last night where the keys player had an older analog desk of the same brand to use as a submixer for all his gear. Outputs crapped out during soundcheck, ended up re-routing and solving the problem. Long story short, we later started talking about the rack mount versions of the desk you were talking about, as he was thinking of one of them as an upgrade. I told him to make sure he checks out the new Qu16 before committing to anything - hopefully he listened.
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7th July 2013
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Also, from what I've been told (not sure if its true or not) the b word desk doesn't have automatic delay compensation.

Isn't that one of the big things people were yelling at digi/avid for over the years? How is it now perfectly acceptable for the b word company to not offer it, when that was the "huge fvck up" by the other company?!?

Get your freakin heads on straight people...
#15
7th July 2013
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The worst things that happened to me i kinda summed up in that thread:
How to shoot yourself in the foot like a pro! Bands playing live, listen up.

And more often than something technical it's... the band. I also had the digital-desk-goes-funny thing on a festival. It was an early Yamaha and I never had any luck with things that have Yamaha written on them, no matter big or small or old or new. The most hair-raising thing was we had to solder a few connections in a power amp in the middle of the show. Nobody noticed.
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#16
7th July 2013
Old 7th July 2013
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When the Digidesign Venue console was pretty new and I was out on my second show operating one, I had a little mishap that caused me to have to switch off the console during the performance and reboot. : P

You remember when the tap tempo was on the multifunction assignable keys. I was watching the stage while tapping the tap tempo button, you know, in the groove and all when I accidentally hit the function button and then the tap button again. This was the default button for "preview" mode. When I made the next fader move, nothing happened. I looked up to see the big red word "PREVIEW" flashing on the screen. I had no idea what this mode was at that time and had no idea how to get out of it. So I shut down the console and rebooted.

Moral of the story is it pays to know a lot about these multifunction consoles prior to flying solo. : P

Very embarrassing.
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#17
7th July 2013
Old 7th July 2013
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I once missed a whole soundcheck due to being stuck on a train with no mobile phone reception (a 30 minute journey ended up taking over 2 hours). It was at the first live job I had had so was pretty green. Basically got fired for that and didnt work in the field for over a yaar after.

but I agree with the earlier poster, noone died here!
#18
7th July 2013
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after troubleshooting a hum problem in the side fills on a large festival stage for Loverboy.. the asshole monitor tech decided to blast my ears with his yelling into Mike Reno's vocal mic..

um, hey buddy.. I'm bending over backwards fixing a negligible hum issue and my ears are inches away from these drivers.. and, with no regard to my safety or any sort of apology, I walked off the job.

Permanent hearing loss is major health issue towards my trade.. what ever happened to safety first ?
#19
7th July 2013
Old 7th July 2013
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Years ago I was doing a gig on the National Mall in DC... FOH power was fed from a PD onstage via a 5-20 connector. Unbeknownst to me, there had been a bank of 6-30 outlets recently installed on this PD for use with wiggle lights (I refuse to call them "intelligent" lol). This was a PD which I had used MANY times before when the 6-30's weren't there and therefore didn't expect them to be there or think twice about it. I somehow managed to cram the 5-20 plug into the 6-30 outlet. Don't ask me how... It really didn't take much effort at all and I didn't think anything of it. It only took the little extra wiggle that one often associates with a bent pin on the plug.

When I got out to FOH and powered up, I noticed that the readout on the power supply for the PM4000 I was using read 207... Yup, I shot 207V down to FOH to a bunch of 120V gear! Total "facepalm" moment! I blew every fuse in my compressors and gates, one of my house 31 band EQ's, as well as the 48V phantom power fuse in the console power supply. Oops...

Fortunately, the load-in was the day before the actual show, so I had time to go get fuses (from a specialty electronics shop of course... Radioshack didn't have the ones I needed and had to go out of my way to get the right ones ...) and replace them all the next morning before sound check. The only one I couldn't replace onsite was the phantom power fuse. Apparently that one resides buried inside the power supply and isn't accessible via the twist off cover things on the back. Had to take care of that in the shop afterwards. Fortunately there was a monitor desk there too, so that supplied the 48V for what needed it.

That might not be the WORST thing ever to happen to me, but it ranks up there. At least in the "DUH!" category lol.

And this one didn't happen to ME, but I did witness it... Did a relatively small gig for some radio station promo thing and the lighting guy was getting power from a gene. Problem was, it wasn't a gene any of us would even look at (not "movie power"). It was a construction gene and it ended up having a wild leg that toasted one of his 2 dimmer pack/racks (whatever they were, I can't remember) and blew the lamps in half his fixtures. If that isn't a lesson in "ALWAYS meter your power before you plug in", I don't know what is!

I'm sure I can think of more "son-of-a-bitch" moments including tearing down scaffolding stages/roof systems in hurricanes, but I'll shut up and let others share lol
#20
7th July 2013
Old 7th July 2013
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I've had various problems with digital gear freaking out. The worst being a couple of shows with the Pro 2 when first released before Midas had figured out the voltage rail issue or whatever it turned out to be..

Basically, some Pro 2 consoles had an issue where they would freak out and various master buses would spit out full-scale noise. This happened to me at an outdoor festival when the PA was running WELL under limits with plenty of headroom. Noise was unbelievably loud - it was a truly horrible experience. I actually have a recording of the show from a Zoom H4n - I'll see if I can find it and post a clip of the noise followed by the mics picking up people screaming/me swearing, haha.
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#21
7th July 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by keirleFOH View Post
I've had various problems with digital gear freaking out. The worst being a couple of shows with the Pro 2 when first released before Midas had figured out the voltage rail issue or whatever it turned out to be..

Basically, some Pro 2 consoles had an issue where they would freak out and various master buses would spit out full-scale noise. This happened to me at an outdoor festival when the PA was running WELL under limits with plenty of headroom. Noise was unbelievably loud - it was a truly horrible experience. I actually have a recording of the show from a Zoom H4n - I'll see if I can find it and post a clip of the noise followed by the mics picking up people screaming/me swearing, haha.
yep, white noise running the L1 Ultramaximizer.. gotta love that hidden feature.. lol
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#22
7th July 2013
Old 7th July 2013
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In the middle of a gig, all going really well I leaned across the desk to unmute the FX at the start of a song. Caught the master fader with my sleeve and turned it up about 10 dB. Never seen a front rom become a back row so quick.

No one died....
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#23
8th July 2013
Old 8th July 2013
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I got two that are pretty much tied. Both small shows.

On one I was getting the monitors checked and I unmuted a mic that I didn't set the gain for the mic - there was an hot condenser sitting on a pre with a gain for a SM57. Blew the horns and light bulbs on all four of the monitors. Spent an hour replacing diaphragms, bulbs, and rushing the rest of the setup. Glad I took the spare diaphragms.

Second was a house party. Between sets someone knocked a flower pot full of water into the mixer. The rest of the break was spent taking the mixer apart, cleaning out the water, blowing it with a hair dryer. It worked but was not the same again.
#24
8th July 2013
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Getting hired.






I fell off a 6' stage onto pavement, catching a roadcase on the way down. That sucked, but I didn't break anything, fortunately.

I once had a backpack stolen w/ a set of headphones and a bunch of cd's.

Most of my bad experiences have been of the grumble-grumble-this-sucks variety rather than the catastrophic-trip-to-the-er variety.

-Dan.
#25
8th July 2013
Old 8th July 2013
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During a live outdoor show in front of, say 50 people? (Hopefully), the backliner was messing around with my iPad on stage to help mixing monitors, thanks to the Yamaha mc7l app. But he has problems with technology, really, and every appliance he uses tends to "bug" sooner or later. That's what happened: he hit the recall button on the iPad. Problem is: I missed to save the scene before…
No sound at all, and then live line check in the middle of the song…
I am now saving every 10 minutes, and never let him my iPad

At the end of the same show, while we were packing our stuff, a bodybuilder took the scene and showed his muscles to the audience… pretty weird! We are still laughing about this!
#26
8th July 2013
Old 8th July 2013
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Well... Get yer popcorn:

About a year ago we were meant to be playing a show in Greece, we arrived at the venue, set up, finished the soundcheck, everything was fine and just a couple of minutes before the first act jumped on stage, the venue got attacked by some obscure paramilitary outfit, armored with helmets and padded biker suits (around 30-35 of them), using stun grenades, petrol bombs and crow bars. The FOH/PA guy as well as most of the people running the venue were hospitalised with broken legs and arms and split heads. They stole merch and money, damaged the backline, stole some of the band's equipment, trashed the venue, and left again.

We then realised (after being told by people standing outside) that riot cops had surrounded the area about an hour before the attack, and basically let these guys through to wreak havoc, while not allowing anyone to leave the area during the attack. The attackers then somehow disappeared without any police interference. We packed what was left of our equipment and for about an hour or so could not leave the area because of the riot cops. Eventually we managed to get out of there. Greece is ****ed. The civil war there has been getting worse and worse for the past couple of years, and although it is not officially declared and not reported on the mainstream media, the localised armed conflicts can get pretty bad, faster than you can realise. It is easy to get caught in the middle of something.

That, and another time when we didn't even manage to make it to a venue, again on tour, this time in Austria.. We were scheduled to play in Vienna, but while entering Austria we were detained at the border for no apparent reason. About an hour later, a border cop informed us that he wants money from us. We ask why, and he tries to tell us it is a fine.. We refuse to pay unless we see paperwork, so he lowers the price.. We still refuse to pay, so he lowers the price even more.. We still refuse to pay and he threatens us with jail time. We call our embassies and they say they will look into it. The cops then proceed to deport us from the country before the embassies could call back. After being deported, we contacted our embassies again who said there's not much they can do about it, Austria refuses to cooperate.. We were told we're lucky to get away from this situation with almost no loss, because the week before they confiscated an entire vehicle with its contents because the driver refused to bribe them...!

So, my problems have much less to do with digital interfaces misbehaving.. My problem is more with corrupt governments, rogue nations, and bad luck.

I have since toured Greece again with no problems. I have never and will never go back to Austria, since I found out I need to appoint an Austrian lawyer to represent me in court to challenge the deportation, to be allowed to enter the country.

By the way, I do not use anything with a digital or computerised interface when performing live. This has solved plenty of my problems with such things. I always carry a soldering iron and some parts.. So all PA and backline issues are promptly resolved at soundcheck...

Fixing things smashed with crowbars, or petrol-bombed, on the other hand, proves to be a bit more challenging... The worst part, however, as mentioned before in this thread, is the human losses, even if it's injuries and not death.
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#27
8th July 2013
Old 8th July 2013
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Was my mates b day had a gig at our university anyways the girls made us cake..being the poor student I ate like half the ****ing cake! Next thing I find out the cake was not just a cake it was filled with chronic African marijuana! I forgot the chords... then tried to hide behind the speaker.
#28
8th July 2013
Old 8th July 2013
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Nothing too dangerous (knock on wood)

My worst experience was doing a fly-date for a large convention (8000 people), I was called only a week before and wasn't happy with the rig they were providing me (32 boxes of M'elodie total to cover like a 200' x 500' space) and when we landed, we got a phone call saying the client added 4 bands on the last night of the conference. We were renting everything and had no monitors, no mic packages, basically we were only set up to do some podium mics and like 10ch of RF.

I ended up relying heavily on the stagemix app because I was doing FOH and Monitors from 200+ft away from the stage, with essentially no A2.

Also the client didn't schedule very well so we had to flip the stage from a talk show set to 4 band festival set and do line checks with 8000 people in the chairs getting mighty impatient.

One of the more hectic shows I've done.
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#29
8th July 2013
Old 8th July 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jesusfwrl View Post
Well... Get yer popcorn:

About a year ago we were meant to be playing a show in Greece, we arrived at the venue, set up, finished the soundcheck, everything was fine and just a couple of minutes before the first act jumped on stage, the venue got attacked by some obscure paramilitary outfit, armored with helmets and padded biker suits (around 30-35 of them), using stun grenades, petrol bombs and crow bars. The FOH/PA guy as well as most of the people running the venue were hospitalised with broken legs and arms and split heads. They stole merch and money, damaged the backline, stole some of the band's equipment, trashed the venue, and left again.

We then realised (after being told by people standing outside) that riot cops had surrounded the area about an hour before the attack, and basically let these guys through to wreak havoc, while not allowing anyone to leave the area during the attack. The attackers then somehow disappeared without any police interference. We packed what was left of our equipment and for about an hour or so could not leave the area because of the riot cops. Eventually we managed to get out of there. Greece is ****ed. The civil war there has been getting worse and worse for the past couple of years, and although it is not officially declared and not reported on the mainstream media, the localised armed conflicts can get pretty bad, faster than you can realise. It is easy to get caught in the middle of something.

That, and another time when we didn't even manage to make it to a venue, again on tour, this time in Austria.. We were scheduled to play in Vienna, but while entering Austria we were detained at the border for no apparent reason. About an hour later, a border cop informed us that he wants money from us. We ask why, and he tries to tell us it is a fine.. We refuse to pay unless we see paperwork, so he lowers the price.. We still refuse to pay, so he lowers the price even more.. We still refuse to pay and he threatens us with jail time. We call our embassies and they say they will look into it. The cops then proceed to deport us from the country before the embassies could call back. After being deported, we contacted our embassies again who said there's not much they can do about it, Austria refuses to cooperate.. We were told we're lucky to get away from this situation with almost no loss, because the week before they confiscated an entire vehicle with its contents because the driver refused to bribe them...!

So, my problems have much less to do with digital interfaces misbehaving.. My problem is more with corrupt governments, rogue nations, and bad luck.

I have since toured Greece again with no problems. I have never and will never go back to Austria, since I found out I need to appoint an Austrian lawyer to represent me in court to challenge the deportation, to be allowed to enter the country.

By the way, I do not use anything with a digital or computerised interface when performing live. This has solved plenty of my problems with such things. I always carry a soldering iron and some parts.. So all PA and backline issues are promptly resolved at soundcheck...

Fixing things smashed with crowbars, or petrol-bombed, on the other hand, proves to be a bit more challenging... The worst part, however, as mentioned before in this thread, is the human losses, even if it's injuries and not death.
Welcome to greece my friend!
Also I dig your music!
#30
9th July 2013
Old 9th July 2013
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I once fell asleep on my folded arms on a mixing desk which slowly pushed all of the faders up until the wail of feedback woke me. Didn't even get fired.
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