NBC: volume

Steve Ahola steveahola@ca.astound.net
Mon Oct 15 08:47:20 EDT 2007

Walter Potter wrote:

> ...
> I understand that amps have a sort of sweet spot that adds to the
> tone and turning it down too low can make for crappy sound. I've seen
> some players carry a couple of different amps just to fit the venues.
> You don't want a wall of Marshall's in a tiny venue or a Pro Junior
> in an arena (unless you mic it). But it would seem to me that if a
> significant portion of the audience is complaining, that the musician
> would turn it down a bit. The idea of "blowing them away" should be
> figurative, not literal. I want to remember the show because it was
> good, not because my ears are ringing. -- Walter

With the equipment available today you should be able to get whatever
tone you want at practically any sound level. Then again, there is a
certain effect when the sound is bouncing off all of the walls that you
really can't get at low volumes (not that you necessarily want that...
LOL) The loudest artist I ever heard was Link Wray at the Keystone in
Berkeley in the mid 70's- it was like getting your face smashed with
brass knuckles...

I'd think that the manager should be in touch with the audience enough
to get a sense of whether they think it is too loud (or too soft-
sometimes the people in the back can't hear the band very well). And I 
think that the manager should get the volume levels adjusted before the 
audience starts to complain, or even worse, to leave. IMO being 
responsive to the mood of an audience is always a positive thing- if 
certain songs aren't going over very well it might be a good idea to 
revise your set list a bit and play the songs that they will like. And 
ditto for the sound levels.

Steve Ahola

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