Monitor engineer Brian Hendry is on the road with soulful vocalist Joss Stone, who is out supporting The Soul Sessions. Hendry reveals tricks from stage-left on carrying most of the gear and taking time out to relax.
How much production gear do you carry?
We are carrying all of our backline. We carry a Midas XL3 for monitors and an effects rack, and an effects rack for FOH. We also carry all our in-ear systems (eight total) and a drum stool shaker. All our ear molds are from Future Sonics.
Joss prefers to use just one in-ear, so at each venue, I'll hook into the house sidefills and a pair of wedges downstage. For the drummer, I'll also use a sub bass cabinet so he'll feel some air moving behind him.
Joss, two backup singers, the guitarist and bass player are on wireless Sennheiser Evolution 300 Series, and the upstage guys, two keyboard players and the drummer use Shure 600 hardwire units. We carry our own mics: Sennheiser Evolution radio series for Joss; an 865 with 935 capsule and three 865 wired for backing vocals; 602 for kick and bass; 903s for both snares; 604s for toms; and a 609 silver for the guitar.
Are there any clarity problems you encounter with the theaters Joss plays in?
The ambient onstage sound varies quite a bit. For each in-ear mix, I'll use a tight reverb to match the venue. Sometimes it's an uphill battle, but with the in-ear rigs being very efficient, it's not insurmountable.
Do you have any must-have pieces of gear?
My Future Sonics ear molds, my Sony 600 headphones and my bass fishing gear. Most of the shed gigs have fishing holes nearby — it's great to get away from the music biz thing for a while.
What do you do in your free time?
My time is usually taken up by my wife, three daughters and the pets. I love being home but also love my job — I'm a very lucky man.