Aptos, CA – June 2014… For many musicians, working with a microphone on a stand makes changing instruments complicated. Equally challenging, proximity to the microphone dramatically impacts the level and tonal character of the performance. Knowing there had to be a ‘better way,’ vocalist/guitarist Michael DeMartini found the solution in the form of an E6 Earset microphone from Menlo Park, CA-based Countryman Associates.
DeMartini is a busy musician. As a member of two bands—one, performing dance music of many styles, the other a Polynesian ensemble—he regularly switches among a Taylor 6-string, an Ovation Double neck 12/6 guitar, or a lap steel guitar while also handling vocal responsibilities. By selecting the Countryman E6 Earset microphone for use with a Shure wireless system, he can now change instruments without worrying about getting back to the microphone in time. He discussed his experience with his Countryman setup.
“Because I am constantly switching instruments during performances, including lap steel and Polynesian drums, the E6 enables me to move about the stage without having a conventional mic on a stand to worry about,” DeMartini explained. “This alone greatly simplifies performances, as it enables me to focus on playing as opposed to dealing with the logistics of getting back to the mic in time for the next verse, background part, and so forth.”
DeMartini was equally emphatic about the necessity of achieving clear, natural vocal quality. “If you’re not in the proper position when working with a fixed microphone on a stand, vocals suffer—both in terms of the level and the tonal quality, both of which are impacted by one’s proximity to the mic,” DeMartini added. “By using an earset mic, the distance between the mic’s capsule and my mouth remains constant and, as a result, I get better, more natural sounding audio performance from this setup. The sound is much more crisp and clear than I have ever gotten from my regular mics and I never encounter problems with feedback. There’s a bit of microphone technique that’s involved in getting the best results, but with just a little practice, you’ll find it’s well worth the effort.”
While working with an earset mic and a wireless transmitter and receiver is a relatively new experience, DeMartini emphasized that getting acclimated to the setup was a painless process—thanks in large part to Countryman’s customer and technical support services. “Countryman’s customer and technical support services are excellent,” he reports. “When working with an earset mic, the placement of the microphone not only affects volume production, it also impacts the quality of the sound. There’s a video on the Countryman website (http://vimeo.com/61843374) that was very helpful in learning how to properly adjust the E6 for optimum results. And I was equally impressed with the courtesy and assistance provided by the Countryman staff. Rosa Pimentel was extremely professional, helpful, and thoughtful. She provided me with a personal fitting session and answered any questions I had about my new mic.”
With his new Countryman E6 Earset and his Shure wireless system, DeMartini reports that the logistics of switching instruments during performance without compromising his vocal responsibilities is working out better than he ever envisioned. “I’m really glad that I switched to the Countryman E6,” he said. “This setup has freed me up to move about the stage and has greatly enhanced my rapport with the audience by enabling me to have better eye contact. I’m no longer focused on the mechanics of switching instruments and getting back to the mic. Now, I can focus on what’s really important: the music!”
To learn more about the musical services of Michael DeMartini, contact him at [email protected].
About Countryman Associates
For more than 30 years, Countryman has focused on developing microphones and accessories that deliver maximum gain before feedback, with the highest possible rejection of wind, vibration, interference, and other unwanted sounds. The result is warm, clear vocals in speaking and singing applications, delivering natural audio reinforcement that requires almost no attention from the sound engineer or the performer. For additional information about Countryman Associates, visit the company online at www.countryman.com.