Mix caught up with Martina McBride when she passed through the Oakland Arena (Oakland, Calif.), in late June. Mixing Martina at front of house is her husband and longtime engineer John McBride. Clair Bros. is supplying an i4 P.A., which the engineer describes as “the finest line array system available anywhere. I use no subs whatsoever. We hang 14 deep i4s left and right and Clair T2s for side coverage in the arenas.”
McBride is mixing on an ATI Paragon board, using all four stereo outputs (left/right front, left/ride sides, recording, video feed). According to the engineer, “The mono outputs are used for front-fills, press feeds if necessary and sub outputs if we are on a festival and need a separate sub output, and one for CD playback to stage for an intro CD we use. We have loaded the mainframe with 40 mono modules and eight stereo modules, giving us 56 inputs from stage. Since we don't use a bunch of pre-recorded music in our show, the 56 inputs work well. There are also eight stereo returns for CD players, 'verbs, et cetera. I have to have an SPL Transient Designer, and the EMI EQs are the greatest. They are almost impossible to find, unfortunately. I couldn't get by without a Lexicon 200; I need the noise and that sound.
“Martina's vocal mic is the latest Shure UHF-R with a regular 58 capsule,” McBride says. “We have been very happy with this system. Martina's crew is one of the best anywhere. We come in, do what we do, pack it up and go again the next day. The bar is set high by Martina, who delivers night after night, so we better do the same.”