We're now in the thick of 2018 and our first major assignment for our Live Production audio unit at SAE was to throw a live gig from the Sound Studio at school. We were lucky enough to have our showcase run smoothly this past week, as we featured local emo-rock band “Dolphin Soup” supported by ambient psychedelic DJ “Composite Cone”.
The parameters of the assignment were quite straight forward, a support act play for at least ten minutes using a minimum of one input, then a main act to perform for 20+ minutes with multiple inputs. Quite simply, it had to LOOK LIKE A GIG, SMELL LIKE A GIG, FEEL LIKE A GIG! (I guess the sound part was kinda important too).
Over the previous weeks classes we had been shown how to set up and prepare the stage. This was in regards to speaker placement, wiring of mics/speakers and signal flow of the Front of House desk through amps, down to recording the set live in Pro Tools.
For the day itself we had a specific itinerary with the mindset of not rushing through anything and by KISSing the LSD (Keeping It Simple, Stupid with a Long Slow Day). This moniker would allow for errors or mishaps and as we were not in a rushed frame of mind, by following the process we had been taught there was only a miniscule amount of these.
The stage setup gradually came together and helped set a uniquely crazy vibe which complimented both the support and main acts style. We had identified problem frequencies during line check earlier in the day, and were able to EQ on the fly quite accurately during sound check.
We also focused on promoting the event effectively. The campus was splattered in Dolphin Soup posters, as well as creating a facebook event a week out, had school admin send a campus wide email promoting the event and telling anyone who'd listen on the day.
(Of course the lure of "free live music & drinks" was an enticing hook).
As we were also ahead of schedule for most of the day. This allowed the band extra time during the soundcheck, but also members of our team to have a quick breather before we opened doors.
The result was a fun vibe which all in attendance seemed to enjoy. We had great team work all around which really showed with the professionalism of the gig.
Here are some more highlights from the night, including a fantastic vignette put together by Griffin Jennings.