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Who in here plays live electronic music regularly? Desktop Synthesizers
Old 13th March 2018
  #1
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kcearl's Avatar
Who in here plays live electronic music regularly?

Whats the background? Are you playing somewhere regularly, do you make a living, whats your set up, fan base, in a band etc?

In fact whats your live story?

Ive never done it, was offered a couple of gigs early on but Im ancient and I have very little idea what I used on my last track. i just record and forget, so recreating anything would be a laugh.

If you have any videos or pics of setups Id love to see them
Old 13th March 2018
  #2
Gear Guru
 
zerocrossing's Avatar
I did it for years... but I got really sick of the break-down-transport-set-up-play-break-down-transport-set-up cycle. Maybe if I had a road crew...
Old 13th March 2018
  #3
I've been averaging about 20 live shows a year since I started performing 4 years ago. I moved from the city to a small town before starting my live electronic music project, so that number would be higher if I lived in a big center again - only about 3 of my yearly shows are in my hometown - but for a multitude of reasons I much prefer living and creating in a small town, so that's that. My shows are mostly within a 5 hour radius of my town, though sometimes I'll travel up to 10 hours for a festival and I have done a few tours a few provinces away and back. As cool as a big tour seemed at the time, I've learned it's more efficient / sustainable on all levels to grow a fan base that's close to my town, so the last couple years I've focused more on the small corner of the world I live in (Southern BC, Canada) - mostly just setting up my own shows by contacting venues myself and then finding local acts to join. After doing that in a place once or twice, I usually have enough contacts to not have to set up my own show the next time around . I get into 3 or 4 festivals a year and those gigs are worth 10 'regular' ones - in $, in new fans, in connections, but I'm competing with 800 acts for 25 spots so it's pretty much luck or connections getting in. It's a slow climb.

My first few shows I did I had assembled a 5 piece band, that quickly got downsized to a 3 piece for a year, then a 2 piece for another year, and finally last year - about 25 shows ago - I decided to do my live show solo. I love it! The only thing I miss is having a designated driver . I wouldn't feel like you need to add people to make a live electronic band work. That's the short version...

Do I make a living? Hell no, but I generally break even on the road. Months that I have a lot of shows I make ok money, then one month I'll drive 10 hours for one show and lose lots of money. It balances out. It's a super slow process though - you really have to go back to the same places again and again to build a fanbase, but it's those people that I've found tend to be the most supportive - it just may take 3 or 4 visits until you realize that the person in the blue jacket has bought all your albums and shares everything you post online. So it is worth it to me. It's also a hell of a lot more rewarding having strangers in a room listening to your music and then coming up and talking to you about it than, say, looking at your play counts or hoping for a red flag on your new track you shared. It doesn't even compare. Having real people actually engage with your music is, frankly, addicting.

I've got videos and pics at Texture & Light for anyone that wants to see them. My current live set up (whittled down from a 5 piece like I mentioned!) is very streamlined and simple, but it took years to get to this point:

A Tempest, an Octatrack, a Pro 2, and a QU PAC digital mixer. I have 3 Tempest voices patched as drums, 1 patched as a lead, and the remaining 2 as a 2 voice. Those 3 Tempest groups (drums, lead, synth) go into 3 of the OT inputs for live effect processing / sampling and the Pro 2 goes into the 4th input. The OT has 4 of it's audio tracks as live processing of the inputs, 2 for sample playback (either a backing file or an audio file from the album to mangle), 1 for random things, and a master one to effect all inputs. It also sends me a click to my in ears and the midi side does some sequencing. The digital mixer allows we to have basic fx on each channel, room EQ, mic mutes etc etc and it fits in a 5u case that fits all the cables coiled up while still plugged into the back of the mixer. I could get more in depth about all this, but it's pretty tailored to my exact set up, so feel free to pm for more info.

For 2019 my goal is to build a "fly rig" version of my set up that fits into a carry on bag on a plane - will most likely just be Tempest, OT, 6 channel mixer, Keystep. I've already bought the suitcase and those things fit, but I'll probably wait until next winter to re create my whole set with that new set up.

I could blab on about this forever really, but I'll stop here. But you should try it!
Old 13th March 2018
  #4
Live performance is where it's at, nothing has influenced my process and sound more than getting things hooked up on a PA in front of others and seeing how others with more experience approach it. It's an uncontrolled environment. More times than not, when the set is done, I feel like I learn something. Mostly about efficency, as opposed to the relaxed studio setting, every time is different. But it is really where the rubber meets the road. The actual performance itself is about 20 percent of the deal, since i been diving into booking/promoting/bringing in tours/hotel/flights/travel/stage set/visuals/equipment rental/etc.
But it's definitely worth it.
Old 13th March 2018
  #5
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midiquestions's Avatar
How much of your setup is live instruments and how much is pre-recorded backing tracks, sequenced VSTs, etc?
Old 13th March 2018
  #6
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kcearl's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by midiquestions View Post
How much of your setup is live instruments and how much is pre-recorded backing tracks, sequenced VSTs, etc?
Yeah Ive thought about how Id do one tune and how Id incorporate live playing...but mostly I can see getting around backing tracks. Not that it matters if thats how you have to do it.
Old 13th March 2018
  #7
Quote:
Originally Posted by midiquestions View Post
How much of your setup is live instruments and how much is pre-recorded backing tracks, sequenced VSTs, etc?
It totally depends on each individual track, but my basic process is to go through the "finished" track (in quotes because I prefer to add new tracks to my live set before they're done so they can evolve in front of an audience before being finalized in a recording) on my DAW and mute all the parts that I want to play with my hands, all the parts that can be sequenced via my gear sequencers, and all the parts I want to live modulate. What's left goes in the backing - usually a percussion layer and some atmospheric sounds, as well as sub stuff (see below).

Because I play in all sorts of places with all levels of PA gear (warehouses parties to art galleries to festivals, to a house parties etc), I've learned it's best of my kick and my sub bass is an audio file - these are the 2 things that fluctuate wildly based on room size/shape and speaker set up - and because I use in ears and am not at the point where I have my own sound guy (or a sound guy at all sometimes), I really can't hear when they're f'd, so by having them in my backing I can have confidence that my bass levels are good no matter the situation. I have no problem adjusting my leads / percussion etc live via my in ears if needed, but it's impossible for me to gauge bass frequencies from on stage. Until I travel with my own sound guy, that's how it goes. -I do my own mix and just give the FOH a L/R feed. The QU PAC also allows me to multitrack record my sets right to a thumb drive, so every few sets I listen back to to make sure nothing is sticking out or buried.

To keep things fresh and interesting for ME (honestly, a majority of the audience really doesn't notice / care what exactly you're doing up there, so do what makes you happy and engaged - I often get compliments on my "great dj set" lol), I have "infinite loop" points set up at many points throughout a track on my Octatrack (my main sequencer that also has backing). These loop points allow me to make each segment of a track as long (or short) as makes sense for the specific moment because I have to manually advance it ahead to get to the next pattern. So my track is "on rails", but it's totally customizable and different each show.

Sometimes the "bridge" in a track might be 4 bars, some nights I might noodle for 64 bars and create my own little new track within a track on the spot before advancing for instance. Because my backing tracks (usually 1 OT channel of "drum" backing, one OT channel of "synth" backing") are on their own OT tracks, I can also mangle and modulate these to my heart's content,so they're not static either- like in one of those loop points I can mute the drum backing, throw a comb filter on my synth backing, noodle on my Pro 2 and then record that whole mess to my OT to drop back in at a later point.

I also play a lot of my parts in to the sequencers - either play a tempest part and record it to right to the Tempest to loop, or record the midi or audio of a part I'm playing in the OT to continue looping as I sing or whatever. Anyways, it gets pretty deep on my end, and there's HOURS of programming each track in layers in my Octatrack, but it's super fun and keeps it fresh!!!
Old 14th March 2018
  #8
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I am currently in 2 electronic bands that play live. one is a 5 piece with a laptop ( bass, drums, synth, vocals, laptop ) the laptop had backing sounds and DMX light cues with video as well. all synced up. we have it down to 15-20 min setup. it almost always works right too!

Simmer 2X | This Bliss

projections:
Nick Zampiello on Instagram: “Done!!!! Release wed! #thisblissmusic #bostonmusic #newallianceeast #ampsvsohms #newallianceaudio”

the other band is more of a party band and we do live guitar and simmons drums with 2 lead vocalists. the tracks come off of a phone for now. it's just simple and we bring light activated dmx lights.

True Confessional | Party Bois

simmons kit ( i can pick it up and run around with it ( the cables are long )!

Nick Zampiello on Instagram: “We are the world. We are all Party Bois | vid by @jessbaggia #pogo #dancing #bostonmusic #partybois #simmons #vintagedrums #electronicmusic…”

I write and record the demos for both bands and forget everything instantly. so we port the parts to various people and or add them to the backing tracks. the singers pick demos from my pile to complete and add their bits. i don't bring anything i care about to shows. i have a million old simmons pads and they break all the time because i run around with them. i use a simmons SDS1000 for a brain. it;s very reliable even after 30 years!
Old 14th March 2018
  #9
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Praxisaxis's Avatar
 

I make a living from music with several income streams. These days, composing and teaching (mainly). I haven't ever made a lot of money from electronic music performance, and these days if I do it's not money I rely on.

It was only ever a side project, but I used to do a (relatively) lot of live performance years ago. I was working my way into Ableton with an APC 40, plus a selection of peripherals (generally a synth or two and a drum machine).

Frankly I scaled back because I wasn't happy with (my use of) Ableton. I was also getting tired of composing inside a computer for electronic music. I underwent a big state change which has taken a few years but (to cut a long story short) saw me dropping all my (electronic music) gigs (I do other musical stuff besides this), and migrating to an MPC workflow, which is now dominated by the MPC Live. This was a conscious choice because I wanted to perform with some kind of hardware unit as the brain (even though I still use a laptop for other stuff), so that my production & performance can be just two sides of the same coin. I knew this would take a serious time investment.

I'm only just starting to perform live again now, with this new setup: MPC Live as the brain/arrangement organizer, feeding clock to another drum machine which serves as a more organic, spontaneous entity. I also use another synth which I either play live or feed with MIDI (while twiddling knobs), and I run all this through a mixer. A Kaoss Pad fits in there too, for "fills and stuff." I also draw on oddball acoustic instruments (usually with contact mics attached), like a toy piano or mandolin. And. . . I play with instrumentalists. My next gig is 3 dancers, + violin + electronics (me). It's more of a sit-down concert, runs for a week at a local venue. I guess I do quirky, niche stuff.
Old 14th March 2018
  #10
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I have always played in bands. I am currently in a live 80's cover band. I have gotten bitten by the recent electronic bug. Thus far I have an Akai MPC Live and a Novation Circuit for the sequencer stuff and my Kurzweil Sp-5 for my playing stuff.

The problem with the band is most live rock bands do not wanna use a click track which makes it hard to impossible to incorporate electronica into a show with a live drummer.

So with rant over, your MPC Live could be the cornerstone for playing your tracks live. But I think backing tracks created from home would be the way to go. Now you can use synths and effects type boxes, like DJ mixers and pedals to mix in a live feel at your show. You can also use CV gear. The other option is to use your MPC to provide live samples and get a drum machine like the TR8's. But that could be more stressful. Loopers are also cool as well to build up tracks.

I do know if I were performing electronic originals it would have to get a drum machine for my backing tracks. I would also need to downsize my keyboard to rompler and maybe a synth. Effects pedals would be huge for me.

Hope this helps.
Old 14th March 2018
  #11
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Sebastian N's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by DJRAZZ View Post

The problem with the band is most live rock bands do not wanna use a click track which makes it hard to impossible to incorporate electronica into a show with a live drummer.

.
There's a maxforlive patch that you feed aufio from a live drummer and adjust the bpm of your project to his playing so thing will play in time. And as you say it's rock beats (which are pretty straight generally) it should work well. You need to bring a small laptop to run it though but it will work.

It was featured on Ableton's blog a couple of years ago. Can't remember the name right now but shouldn't be too hard to find
Old 14th March 2018
  #12
Quote:
Originally Posted by midiquestions View Post
How much of your setup is live instruments and how much is pre-recorded backing tracks, sequenced VSTs, etc?
all live hardware, used backing stems for awhile and even a hybrid DJ type setup, in my struggling days i'd mix in vinyl due to lack of gear.
So everything now is mainly sampler based, with a couple Volcas, synths fx...MIDI, thru box, BSP. Basically tearing down most of the studio and setting up on stage.
Old 14th March 2018
  #13
Gear Nut
 
mkdsl's Avatar
I do live shows regularly, it is my main source of income. Usually solo, Octatrack as the brain, with AR on the drums, as the base of the setup, with various synths taking part in the setup or not. Currently favorite is the toraiz as-1. IPad is also a common part of the rig.
At first I did a totally live improv thing, did it at large parties while unfamiliar with the equipment I had. Boy I sucked badly. People at parties are there to party, not witness my own progress as a musician
So I started incorporating whole songs to be closer to a dj set, while still being live.

Am starting rehearsals with a drummer soon, he will trigger both the AR and the AS1, to keep things out of the computer grid (as1 has a trigger input).
Already tried this, it's really cool and fun.
Old 14th March 2018
  #14
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Electric Sugar's Avatar
I play live maybe 10 times a year, with a screen behind me with all sorts of weird stuff I find on YouTube and make into a video. I'm currently using Dreadbox Erebus, Make Noise 0-Coast, Volca Bass, and Waldorf Blofeld. Sequenced by Keystep and SQ1.

I tend to play to about 10-15 men in their 40s. There are usually photos that make me look really cool.
Old 14th March 2018
  #15
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Electric Sugar's Avatar
I play live maybe 10 times a year, with a screen behind me with all sorts of weird stuff I find on YouTube and make into a video. I'm currently using Dreadbox Erebus, Make Noise 0-Coast, Volca Bass, and Waldorf Blofeld. Sequenced by Keystep and SQ1.

I tend to play to about 10-15 men in their 40s. They nod their heads appreciatively and listen intently. Occasionally I can persuade my friends to come.

There are usually photos that make me look really cool.
Old 14th March 2018
  #16
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usedtohaveajuno's Avatar
I played live three times in 1994 - I still remember having to huff and puff all my synths, drum machines and Amiga to the local club for it - nightmare

My mate just had to turn up with his SY85!

He blew me away anyway, could actually write decent tracks
Old 14th March 2018
  #17
Gear Addict
 

Been playing clubs around Europe and UK for the last 6 months. Got gigs off the back of releasing a few EPs on vinyl and my youtube videos. Make some ££ with music but work full time.

Use Ableton, APC60, TT303 and Volca Bass. It's basically a playback of my existing tracks divided up into 8 stems (kick, snare, perc, hats, bass, synths) so I can tweak effects and do some subtractive arrangement. Each song is divided up into sections that I can move between. Have added some acid lines and volca lines on top so can do some synth twiddling. Find this keeps me busy enough on stage and minimises the chances of me messing up badly. Down side is that it's not very spontaneous. Upside it sounds slick and each track is well mixed already.
Old 14th March 2018
  #18
Gear Addict
 

This thread is pure gold, and why I love this forum. Thank you all for contributing.

I'm release my first album in a few weeks, and I've been playing around with the idea of doing some live shows somewhere, but I had no idea how I would ever play my tracks live since they usually have a bunch of stuff going on at once. Wasn't sure if it was ok to play some instruments in the background, and others live, but it seems like that what most of you do, so thanks for that insight!

I might try to now. I guess I have to figure out a live setup, because I'm not moving and disconnecting my studio, seems like a big PITA. Probably can do it with a laptop, a small synth, and effect box and maybe an MPC.
Old 15th March 2018
  #19
Gear Addict
 

90% of the live acts I see use a Roland SP404sx for track playback and usually a small synth for leads, maybe some FX boxes and small percussion. Def the way I would do it if I played out, very foolproof, no crashes, no syncing and easy to transport. Though I'd upgrade to a laptop to sequence lights if possible. Have been seeing a LOT more modular in the past year or two as well...
Old 15th March 2018
  #20
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shreddoggie's Avatar
I am off and on depending on numerous factors. I have a bit of advice for what its worth:

Since making money is not likely for most concerned, get into relationships with aligned people. I got on a label and its worked out great. They need artists, I need distribution and gigs. I don't expect a dime but end up with 1,000s of fans all over the world and that in itself is gratifying. They put on shows and sometimes I have an epic experience like the time up in the Sierras playing a sunrise set on a beach of the feather river. It was nothing fancy, just a few dozen stoned hippies and me with CDs of originals, which leads to...

Don't make it a burden - showing up with a few CDs and a drum machine is fine. Just CDs is fine. People don't give an ass rats if you are 'really playing' they are just there to have a good time. Make sure you are having a good time too instead of sweating some details only the misanthropic dudes in the back with their arms crossed will ever notice. Its way WAY better to drop a beat that gets the girls up front and moving. Speaking of beat...

Your set should be consistent - if you wanna play experimental chill don't be upset if you end up on the 4th stage with a few random people not really paying attention. At this point you are just atmosphere. If you wanna participate in the FUN have some beats, play stuff with stompin funk and builds and drops, pump your fist in the air and have fun. This is plenty good if you have CDs with originals and people are digging it, in fact it is GREAT if they are your own tunes.

Always be prepared: if your sampler wont boot you have a CD - bam - music on! People want to have fun and not think. Do your thinking at home and bring something they can enjoy. If you consistently do this you will get more opportunities to get more crazy and personal with your all-hardware-techno-rig (still have a CD ready - tune cued on your phone - whatever). Computers do seem to have a definite wet blanket effect - if you you mini techno rig with a tune you can play if something goes wrong it works. If you open up your laptop there is often a "Oh boy - he's about to hit the space bar" that is counter to the energy you want to portray.

There are way more gigs available than you think if you are ready to be creative and don't expect money or anyone paying attention. You hone your skills and get experience in figuring out whats meaningful to you just by being the dork in the corner at a gallery or coffee shop. Do open mics. Play a set a friends house party. Be nice to everyone: they also suck and are insecure and making no money at it - its cool. What else would you expect eh? Enjoy that scene and it blossoms.

Your #1 job is to rock the house immediately after it is clear that you are now ON. This is what leads to better gigs and doing it more like you want to with a complicated live techno rig.
Old 15th March 2018
  #21
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Westlaker's Avatar
Old 15th March 2018
  #22
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jonnie5000's Avatar
I bought 3 Volcas (sample,keys, and beats) and an electribe 2 sampler. I've had them for two months and have created an hour of content that is pretty rehearsed. I have a mackie big knob coming tomorrow and I'm going to record it and send it to a local promoter to try and get a booking. I used to dj alot back around 2000-2003 but quit and just recently got the urge to try a live set up. I'm planning on buying a MiniBrute2S and a Rackbrute6U. Along with a midi controller and maybe a kaossspad or something too. I've been in some bands and have played live before but it was not electronic music. Anyway really hopeful I can get to share what I'm doing with some cool like minded people
Old 15th March 2018
  #23
Gear Guru
Good thread... one thing I'll add/reinforce to anyone that has not played live but want to..

That label that asks to put out that vinyl EP for you... even tho you are not "signed" or "paid" for it.
JUST DO IT!!!

it's basically a business card being thrown around the world...
Old 15th March 2018
  #24
Gear Addict
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by shreddoggie View Post
I am off and on depending on numerous factors. I have a bit of advice for what its worth:

Since making money is not likely for most concerned, get into relationships with aligned people. I got on a label and its worked out great. They need artists, I need distribution and gigs. I don't expect a dime but end up with 1,000s of fans all over the world and that in itself is gratifying. They put on shows and sometimes I have an epic experience like the time up in the Sierras playing a sunrise set on a beach of the feather river. It was nothing fancy, just a few dozen stoned hippies and me with CDs of originals, which leads to...

Don't make it a burden - showing up with a few CDs and a drum machine is fine. Just CDs is fine. People don't give an ass rats if you are 'really playing' they are just there to have a good time. Make sure you are having a good time too instead of sweating some details only the misanthropic dudes in the back with their arms crossed will ever notice. Its way WAY better to drop a beat that gets the girls up front and moving. Speaking of beat...

Your set should be consistent - if you wanna play experimental chill don't be upset if you end up on the 4th stage with a few random people not really paying attention. At this point you are just atmosphere. If you wanna participate in the FUN have some beats, play stuff with stompin funk and builds and drops, pump your fist in the air and have fun. This is plenty good if you have CDs with originals and people are digging it, in fact it is GREAT if they are your own tunes.

Always be prepared: if your sampler wont boot you have a CD - bam - music on! People want to have fun and not think. Do your thinking at home and bring something they can enjoy. If you consistently do this you will get more opportunities to get more crazy and personal with your all-hardware-techno-rig (still have a CD ready - tune cued on your phone - whatever). Computers do seem to have a definite wet blanket effect - if you you mini techno rig with a tune you can play if something goes wrong it works. If you open up your laptop there is often a "Oh boy - he's about to hit the space bar" that is counter to the energy you want to portray.

There are way more gigs available than you think if you are ready to be creative and don't expect money or anyone paying attention. You hone your skills and get experience in figuring out whats meaningful to you just by being the dork in the corner at a gallery or coffee shop. Do open mics. Play a set a friends house party. Be nice to everyone: they also suck and are insecure and making no money at it - its cool. What else would you expect eh? Enjoy that scene and it blossoms.

Your #1 job is to rock the house immediately after it is clear that you are now ON. This is what leads to better gigs and doing it more like you want to with a complicated live techno rig.
Great post, all useful advice. The thing for me is, I’m not into playing techno or anything bouncing club music. My stuff is downtempo with some hip hop beats and influences. Not sure where that stuff would fly? Maybe sound lounges and chill bars? Dunno. What ya think? Where should I try to get a live show?
Old 15th March 2018
  #25
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shreddoggie's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by drainyoo View Post
Great post, all useful advice. The thing for me is, I’m not into playing techno or anything bouncing club music. My stuff is downtempo with some hip hop beats and influences. Not sure where that stuff would fly? Maybe sound lounges and chill bars? Dunno. What ya think? Where should I try to get a live show?
Glad it is helpful. I think the answers are still pretty much the same even if you play less up tempo music. There is plenty of mid-tempo stuff that is funky and gets people interested. Besides concentrating on whatever kind of P-funk / party rap kinda infectious groove you may have or be able to make, I think the rest is pretty much the same. Most festivals I've played have a variety of stages spread around with different vibes happening in each place, and doing the open mic / bar / coffee shop / gallery thing might even be easier if you have more cooled out down tempo. Get a keg and bring it with your rig over to your friends backyard - invite some other people you know who make electronic music.

I think the answer of "Where should I try to get a live show?" is: everywhere. Just ask the barrista at the coffee place if they ever have music / can you do a set some evening. The more people say NO the more funny it becomes - you lose all fear of asking and lo and behold someone says "Sure" and you haul whatever rig you have down there and set up in the corner with a pint glass salted with a few dollars. Inevitably someone comes up and says they really dig your tunes and suddenly its all worth it. They put a dollar in your glass and you're like "Holy Jeebus - I am a professional musician"

Remember to keep asking the people who say no especially if you are doing casuals successfully somewhere nearby. Thing is really this: You can't wait for someone to 'give you a gig' you just start doing it. I know a guy who is very successful who used to get a full on battery powered amplification setup and play at the BART station. Why not? I have definitely had more than my fair share of gigs that sucked but never a single one I regretted. Playing to an empty room is something you laugh about alter.
Old 15th March 2018
  #26
Quote:
Originally Posted by drainyoo View Post
I’m not into playing techno or anything bouncing club music. My stuff is downtempo with some hip hop beats and influences. Not sure where that stuff would fly? Maybe sound lounges and chill bars? Dunno. What ya think? Where should I try to get a live show?
My live music isn't really peak time either (90bpm-ish indie dance / electronica stuff) so I play all sorts of different places with all sorts of different artists. Sometimes I'm with a DJ at a club, but just as often I'm with looping acts, beatboxing acts, dream pop duos etc etc - basically, I reach out to local acts whose music I like and go from there. My music worked great opening for a prog rock band and just as great closing for an art pop act lately - whatever works! I've played warehouses to coffee shops to house parties to art galleries and everything in between. Festivals are a great way to meet other acts that bridge boundaries as (like was previously mentioned) there's usually all sorts of stages. You don't have to be performing at a festival to meet other acts to talk to about performing together either - go to other shows with music you like to meet people / artists. If you live in a small town like I do, get contact info for those artists you meet in the city / at a festival and bring them to your town sometime...

I'd also really second the advice of having your set up be easy and reliable. The first shows I played when I was a 5 piece and we took up the whole green room with our gear and went way overtime in soundcheck etc - that's a nightmare for the promoter, the sound guy, and the other acts and I doubt any of those people would ever do something with me again.

Realizing that I didn't have to bring my entire studio with me to play a show was a HUGE revelation for me, and I think has led to more bookings because I've made it my priority to be low maintenance. If you're the "weird live electronic act" sandwiched with Djs or one person loop acts on a bill, you want to be as easy to work for everyone involved as those other acts are.

For instance: I have a back up CF card for my Octatrack, I have a usb stick with my Tempest files backed up, I have 2 extra of all the different cables I use, I have my rig so it can be moved plugged in as one piece, I use in ears, I bring all my own mic etc etc. This took a lot of guessing and testing to get this dialed, but was totally worth it. Leave the extra synth at home, and spend the time or money and build/buy a case that can keep your gear plugged in and easy to set up in an instant...
Old 15th March 2018
  #27
Lives for gear
 

great thread.

I have not played my set live yet but i will be soon. Just need to order me a new PA. I prerecorded drum loops in ableton and play along with them on keyboards or live loop parts into them. I pan on mostly playing bar gigs/small clubs, i have an in with most of the people that do bookings. Basically I will be taking the place of a band. I hope to make some sort of a living. When i play with bands we are splitting a few hundred bucks...to get it myself a few nights a week I could actually do pretty ok.

MY backup plan should computer/something fail is to just play to backbeats off of my Toraiz which will be in the car just in case. We dont have a lot of electronic music live around here - however when I play synth stuff/basslines in the bands I gig with people seem to really eat that **** up.

here's an idea. I have been making a bunch of these "teaser clips" to assist with booking.



one of my covers...

I use sustain pedals alot. I see what P6 hold function is for too.



little more electronic...sorry for the mix!
Old 15th March 2018
  #28
Gear Head
 

I play live every few months, sometimes a little more often. Not at 'clubs', usually at band or art venues. I used to be in a band, so I have a lot more connections in that realm than in the dance scene. Anyway the art-punk types that were into my old band are all into electronic stuff now.

I used to do stuff off a laptop, but it was boring -- not for the audience, for me. Since I'm not usually getting paid much, that makes it a bit pointless if I'm not enjoying it.

My situation is a little bit different in that I do vocals as well. Last gig was a few weeks ago, with a Digitakt, a Blofeld and a mic. Pre-made patterns, but also the ability to really mess with them live. Semi-improvised I guess you could say. It actually went really well -- nice portable setup too!
Old 15th March 2018
  #29
stk
Gear Addict
Just wanted to second all those above who mentioned putting together a portable, reliable, self-contained rig.
As someone who also used to do a lot of live engineering, I can categorically say that less is definitely more when it comes to live sound; I guarantee that you do not need to recreate every layer of the recorded versions of your songs.
Cut it back to the minimum amount of sound required to get the song across and it will sound better on a live system (and reliably sound better for the inevitable shows where there is no "proper" engineer present).
Old 15th March 2018
  #30
I’ve played solo once with a midi keyboard, Reason, and an electribe 2.

with one of my band, we did about 3 shows, and the first one was at a festival. Everyone was super happy and prefered our set to the main band. We use 2 laptops with sync’ed Ableton, a bunch of synths/effects, groovebox, mixer and a MIDI controller + video with Max. Its been hell to setup and rehearse, not easy to move around too. We remade our tracks to be playable live. It was a bit of an undetaking. We missed the deadline for a bigger festival but word was that we could have played there too.

I usually do a show (or a few) around in the city when we release something, then have a few years without shows (or releases). I find it rewarding because it makes your music tangible and “real”, it brings it out there.. but also, it’s exhausting for me personnaly, so I keep them a minimum.
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