In a concert year that included a unique blend of oldies and newbies, Yamaha Commercial Audio Systems Inc. was on hand for many of these gigs, seeing the company’s PM1D, PM5D and M7CL digital consoles, as well as PM5000 and PM4000 analog consoles for front of house, monitors or both.
Engineers for festivals such as the CMA Music Festival, Roots Rock Reggae Festival, Red Bank Jazz Festival, Good Morning America’s Summer Concert Series and Lincoln Center Out of Doors Festival; bands 311, Death Cab for Cutie, Plus 44, Rascal Flatts, Slayer, Tool, Widespread Panic; and high-profile artists Trey Anastasio, Tony Bennett, Phil Collins, David Gray, Elton John, Tom Jones, James Taylor and Roger Waters used Yamaha digital and analog consoles.
According to Sandy Battaglia, tour production manager for Tom Jones, the move to Yamaha PM5D digital mixers was both a choice of technology and road logistics. “We had been carrying PM4000s for almost 10 years,” says Battaglia, “and it was time to upgrade. Plus, since Tom plays venues ranging from small clubs to large casino showrooms to arenas overseas, the size made perfect sense.”
“The PM5000 reminds me of a circa-1970s studio board,” says Dave Morgan, the engineer for Paul Simon and James Taylor, among others. “Sweet-sounding mic preamps and very smooth EQ—I used to carry outboard preamps, especially to handle the low end of a kick drum, for example. There’s no need for that with the PM5000.”
Longtime Blink 182 engineer Chris “Hoover” Rankin (pictured), manning the controls for the newly formed Plus 44, also echoes one of Battaliga’s reasons for choosing a Yamaha PM5D console: its small footprint. “This is my first use of a digital console on a tour, and all the onboard processing of the PM5D eliminates the need for outboard gear, furthering a space-savings.” Rankin hadn’t had the chance to attend Yamaha training due to scheduling conflicts and credits time spent with engineers at both Rat Sound and Schubert Systems Group for bringing him quickly up to speed.
The 2007 Yamaha Commercial Audio Training Seminars (YCATS) are in full swing. Interested parties can check the training dates already scheduled around the country by visiting www.yamahaca.com/training. Additional dates are added on an ongoing basis.