Sam Roberts Band – MTV Live

Edit: Click here to view the MTV Live performance

Today was a breath of fresh air. I was at MTV mixing monitors for Sam Roberts Band on MTV Live in support of his new record Collider (which I recommend you buy). It was the most civilized gig I’ve done in a long time, and frankly I enjoy working with this band more than I probably should ever get used to.

Setting up the stage

The boys are about to embark on a tour of USA, so if they’re in your town, you should probably go to see them. They end up in Vancouver at the end of May, then to Sasquatch Festival, before they return to Toronto to do two nights at Massey Hall.

The best keyboard rig ever.

It was nice not having to fight to get monitors to where they needed to be. Eric, the keyboard player is now on in-ear monitors, so that brings my wedge mixes down to 4, and my in-ear mixes up to two. Josh on drums will be going on ears though soon enough. Sam is on ears, but he also takes some wedges just to get some more thump out of the kick and snare. It’s nice because I don’t have to put any of his vocal in his monitor mix, only his ears.

JT on the kit.

The one downside to doing gigs for TV is that the look supersedes everything else, so the monitor mix position isn’t the greatest for being able to see/watch the band, and what’s worse is that they have to close this black curtain that I can only sort of see out of to see the band.

Mixing monitors behind the curtain, stage left.

They have a Yamaha PM5D-RH at MTV and while it isn’t my first choice, it is a fine console. The main thing I don’t really enjoy about the PM5D is the file management. I literally had to get Phil (Sam’s FOH engineer) to show me how to properly load and save console settings. It’s not the easiest desk to get around,  but once the console is set up it is very powerful and good for mixing monitors. It does have some upsides on the Venue, and I do enjoy it on tours, just not when I’m coming in on a one-off.

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