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Rochester Fall Crawl

Wednesday, September 28th, 2011

This past weekend was the 2011 Rochester Fall Crawl.  This sort of thing usually isn't my scene since I'm not a big drinker, but a friend of mine has a band that was playing at one of the bars and another friend was supposed to run the sound for them but had to cancel at the last minute due to husbandly responsibilities. I was asked to fill in for him.

In case you aren't aware, when I was in college I used to work for the RIT Tech Crew doing sound for various events on campus from speaking engagements to concerts. It has been quite a few years since doing anything like this, but it's just like riding a bike. All the gear belonged to my friend Ed and I was familiar with most of it.

They were supposed to start playing at 6pm so we all arrived at The Pig around 4pm. As expected the stage was not setup and nobody was around. It wasn't until 4:45-5pm when the stage was setup and I could finally start setting stuff up. The setup was simple, a 12 channel board, an amp for front of house, an amp for the two monitor mixes and like 7 or 8 inputs (mics/instuments). The last thing I had to do was plug-in the monitors when I realized I was missing a few 1/4" cables. I needed two to go from the board to the amp and they were nowhere to be found. Once I got over my heart attack I just decided to run the monitors off the less powerful amp built into the mixer. This was decided and done at about 5:55pm while people were starting to show up, nothing like pressure. There wasn't any time for a soundcheck so I just flew by the seat of my pants. It brought back some great memories.

I did try to record the audio using a laptop but just couldn't get it working well enough with time and equipment. Of all the laptops I have, none of them have a line-level inputs, they only have mic-level inputs. In real-world terms that's like the difference between whispering in someone's ear verses screaming at the top of your lungs into their ear. The laptop was expecting the whisper...so when fed a line-level signal out of the board it was really crunchy and clipped no matter how low I set the output. Oh well, maybe next time.

The show ended up being great. They played for about 2 hour then we packed it all up and hung out. It was a great time. I was totally beat by the end of the night so I didn't last long. We were a couple blocks from our favorite cupcakery so we took a walk down there on the way home and got some treats.

Tags: band bar sound

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