Jun 01, 2001

Musicians & Bands

Soundcraft FIVE Monitor a Champion on the Carman Tour

--Carman, certainly one of the biggest names in contemporary Christian music, recently wrapped up his 80-date Heart of a Champion national arena tour, which coincided with the launch of both a new double CD and film. To handle the tour's extensive monitor mixing duties, Blackhawk Audio of Nashville chose to employ a 56-channel/32-bus Soundcraft FIVE Monitor desk.

Each night, Carman, along with his eight band members and three backup singers, performed a 90-minute set of high-energy praise music. All twelve musicians relied on either Shure PSM 600 or 700 in-ear monitors, while two Meyer MSL-4s were additionally used as onstage side fills.

Monitor Engineer Josh White recalls, "By the time we added all of the ancillary devices, like a subwoofer for the drummer and shakers for both the keyboardist and bass player, I was running a minimum of 30 mixes on the FIVE Monitor. Thankfully, the desk is very logically laid out and extremely well suited for stereo in-ears. And, of course, since it's a Soundcraft desk, it's 'a given' that the sound is exceptional; Carman and his band loved what they were hearing. I've worked with a lot of big contemporary acts, but this was the largest number of mixes I had ever been required to provide. Using the FIVE Monitor, it was a piece of cake."

Blackhawk Audio President Rick Shimer, who also served as Carman's front-of-house engineer for the tour, specified the console. "Quite frankly, there wasn't anything else out there that would do what we needed to do - period," says Shimer. "Aside from all of the monitor mixes, we had to integrate 24 channels of pre-recorded voice and music tracks with the live band, so we ended up using all 56 channels on the board.

"When originally putting together the system design for this tour, I went to Bruce Bossart at Mid Coast Audio and told him that if he'd purchase a FIVE Monitor for his rental stock, I'd take it right out on the road with Carman. So he agreed and we used his desk. As I had fully expected, the FIVE Monitor was an outstanding tool that did everything we needed it to do."

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