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Randy Crawford And Joe Sample Touring Europe With Alcons Pro-Ribbon Line-Arrays

United States
Zwaag, January 2, 2007 — For the promotion of their latest album “Feelin” Good”, jazz artists Joe Sample (piano) and Randy Crawford (vocals) have been touring through Europe, accompanied by Joe’s son Nick on (contra-) bass and Johnny Vidacovich on drums.

The band was reinforced by Alcons pro-ribbon line-arrays with great success.

This tour, Paul Mitchell was both sound supervisor and tour manager. Paul can easily be called “sound engineering legend”, working with the great names in contemporary jazz and fusion; He was engineer on David Sanborn’s “Inside” and Marcus Miller’s “M2″, both Grammy award winning albums, but also engineer (& co-producer) of The Rembrandt’s hit single ”I’ll Be There For You“ from the TV show ”Friends“.

Tom Back (Alcons Audio MD), Paul Mitchell, Philip “Dr.Phil” de Haan (Alcons Audio R&D), Carsten Albrecht (Alcons Audio Germany) under an LR14 pro-ribbon line-array.

Paul: “I always loved the smooth top-end of a specific brand that I’ve been working with for many years and never thought of the possibility that it could be beaten. I started my career in pro-audio in studio recording, with high-quality near-field monitoring. Being so close to the monitors, all details in the music are audible. Hearing the LR14’s reminded me immediately of this near-field monitoring sound quality.”

The system of choice was LR14 ultra-compact pro-ribbon line-array, with per side 9 units LR14 + 3 units LR14B, driven by two ALC4 controller-amps on SDP processing modules. For the (larger) halls, per side 6 units LR16 were used with 2 units LR16B, with 4 pcs. LR14 as under-hang. The ultra-compact SR9 were used as front-fill.

Mitchell continues: “It’s great to have this high resolution response, as it gives a lot more room to play around with the mix. You can’t have too much vocal, with an artist like Randy Crawford. With the non-compressed sound, even the slightest details are reproduced. I do prefer an uncompressed sound - all audio today is so manipulated to sound big on your cell phone - in live music - especially Joe & Randy, the dynamics are incredible, and the ”space" in the arrangement is a very big part of the sound.

When the dynamics drop super low during a show and Randy is singing off mic, the LR14’s reproduce every nuance off her voice + I can hear the ambience, reminding me of my early studio experience. It feels so good! ...and the amazing thing is it sounds that way for everyone in the theatre.”

Though Lünenburger company Profimusik (Germany) was called in for the sound reinforcement for the German leg of the European tour, they were asked to do the complete tour as a direct result of the fantastic sound quality and support; This was taken care of by Toby Lange on monitors and by his brother Florian Lange on FOH.

Paul Mitchell finalizing: “Another thing is, that in the jazz scene, most productions are relatively small with restricted budgets; Limited staff, limited equipment. So quick system set-up and strike is essential; No time for a lot of system tweaking or eq’ing. On this tour we experienced first-hand that setting-up the LR14 was a breeze, even in the most acoustically challenging halls.

I am in no doubt that what these guys are doing is the future. We’re very happy we’ve had it on our tour. We’re definitely going to use it on our gigs to come outside Europe as well.”

Never before was a title of a promoted album so striking as this time..
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