Nothing like a bad gig to end the honeymoon!

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by shark_bite, Dec 22, 2009.


  1. shark_bite

    shark_bite Member

    Messages:
    5,190
    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2008
    Location:
    outer space
    So I just got a couple Goodsells this fall. Did two gigs recently - one with each one - that kind of brought me back to earth a little with both.

    1) Goodsell Custom 33 - did a gig at a bowling alley. Guys! Don't ever play in a bowling alley if you can avoid it. They put a platform out over some of the lanes and we play standing on that. Slight problem. Well a couple really. 1, the minute the drummer starts hitting, you can forget about using reverb. Splash splash splash splash. 2, with no baffling or walls or anything anywhere, and with a high enough ceiling and because it's a huge room, it's gotta be nearly impossible to mix. I had my amp too far behind me and I felt like all the clean headroom was gone. Not to mention the moment a note left the speaker simply evaporated into thin air. I even had it tilted back on a stand and I could still barely hear it. What a buzzkill!

    2) The following night, my Super 17 came out to a blues jam as one of the host amps (the other being a BFDR with a JBL D120F). It's a big stage and a big room, but the engineer is usually really good. Most of the time there's a BJr on that side of the room, so I figured the Goodsell would hang. I hadn't anticipated the two most obnoxious trumpet players on earth walking in the door playing as loud as possible though. That seemed to bring ALL stage volume up a few notches and it was nearly impossible to hear the guitar on that side. Partly because of the horns, but partly also because no guitar was going back into the monitors and hardly any into the mains. Everything was all off really.




    I hate when this happens, because even though it forces me to acknowledge that my ampstruments aren't the second coming of guitar tone for every possible space and I tend to get more easily frustrated with them when they don't do exactly as I need them to, even if it's just because I brought the wrong amp to the gig. This must be where GAS begins for most people.

    On the other hand, I've done enough gigs with each amp to know that's also kind of crazy to blame the amp every time - I still maintain that I won't find anything better for me and while I keep my eyes and ears open, I'm rather doubtful that either of the almighty Goodsells are going anywhere. Just some food for thought, though.
     
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2009
  2. scr@tchy

    scr@tchy Member

    Messages:
    3,334
    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2009
    Is that one gig for each amp? You probably don't need to hear this, but after doing a ton of gigs with the same amp I have nights where it is status quo, utter crap (from even crap's perspective), and stellar multidemensional night... all kinds of variables can and will take you up and down, I don't think there is an amp made that can thwart the unexpected bad gig sounds.
     
  3. scr@tchy

    scr@tchy Member

    Messages:
    3,334
    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2009
    Also, I wish there was an amp that had a switch labeled "on concrete".
     
  4. PFunk

    PFunk Member

    Messages:
    916
    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2007
    Dear Mom,
    I'm "making-it" in the Music Business...
    ;)
     
  5. mbratch

    mbratch Member

    Messages:
    2,389
    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2003
    Location:
    Webster, NY
    The best gear in the world doesn't overcome a poor sound environment or poor musicianship on the part of other band members (who seem to have no concept of "balance", "mix", or "blend").

    I've played in some rooms that were simply impossible to handle a band with a drummer no matter what you did. Especially if any symbols are involved at all. Some rooms just weren't meant to be played in without really precise sound reinforcement equipment (in-ear monitors, low stage volume, etc).
     
  6. shark_bite

    shark_bite Member

    Messages:
    5,190
    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2008
    Location:
    outer space
    Exactly.

    The whole time I was at the bowling alley I was thinking "damn it, should have brought my Bassman."

    The whole time I was at the next gig I was thinking "gr, not enough juice. Wish I had my Deluxe!"

    I know it was more of a wrong amp for the job situation but it still bums me out. Tonight's gig is a normal bar gig. That should be redeeming.
     
  7. Bikedude

    Bikedude Gold Supporting Member

    Messages:
    4,904
    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2005
    Location:
    Cleveland, Ohio
    I've been trying to downsize by bringing my PRRI to gigs lately, instead of my MKII-17 or my DRRI. First couple of sets the PRRI sounds great, vol around 4-5 miced to FOH. By the middle of the second or thrid set, keyboard plyr somehow gets louder. I fight it for a few tunes, but have to "give in" and up the vol. sometimes to 7. Well with a PRRI, this gets into the crunch zone, and leaves little margin for clean headroom. So I think I'll be bringing the DRRI for the next few gigs, at least I'll be able to "keep up".
     
  8. dazco

    dazco Member

    Messages:
    10,579
    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2003
    This was always my dilemma till i started using marshalls. That marshall midrange has never let me down. The varience between the worse and best nites using marshalls has been barely noticable with very few exceptions. Beofre marshalls i would have killer sound one nite and the next sometimes so bad i could not play well to save my life. I'll take consistancy before perfect in tone any day.
     
  9. jchan

    jchan Member

    Messages:
    1,583
    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2008
    I use a 50 watt plexi reissue. Vols 1 & 2 are set at 12 o'clock and it is still bassman clean. When pushed with pedals it really screams. I use a Landgraff Dynamic OD for clean to crunch and Landgraff MO'D for more gain. I have a volume pedal at the end of the chain to control volume. The guitar volume knob fine tunes the amount of overdrive. With the volume pedal I can get as loud as I need. The plexi is loud enough to hang in there in a boomy tough room.

    Generally speaking though, if you have a hard time hearing yourself in a bad room, you will need clean headroom, less distortion and more midrange by either dialing the amp or using a tube screamer type pedal. If you want more sustain, use a compressor. Sometimes low wattage amps don't get the clean headroom to help cut in a tough mix. Cutting in a mix had lots to do with EQ, not just volume.
     
  10. fazendeiro

    fazendeiro Member

    Messages:
    1,103
    Joined:
    May 16, 2006
    Location:
    Ga.
    Good, informative post.

    One other thing: I see lots of players changing their equipment so often at the drop of a hat. They don't have the patience to work with their gear and find out how to get good sound from it in a variety of venues.
     
  11. shark_bite

    shark_bite Member

    Messages:
    5,190
    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2008
    Location:
    outer space
    Yeah that's a good point. I was pushing everything through a Kingsley Jester, which adds a nice little hump in the mids, and the Goodsell has a good frequency response - clean it's a lot like a BF Fender without quite as much scoop.

    I wonder how many amps here have been sold due to weird rooms on the first gig.

    Thankfully I gig enough that in a week or two I've had the amp out in at least 4 or 5 different settings usually, and by then I can be pretty objective in deciding whether or not I'm liking it.
     
  12. barryoneal

    barryoneal Member

    Messages:
    221
    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2008
    Location:
    Nashville, TN
    This is an excellent post. So much of being heard is making sure you find a hole in the audio spectrum and avoid putting your tone in the frequencies of much more powerful or featured intruments.

    I agree completely, in tough situations, your mids make or break you. So the screamer is a great suggestion. Also, we often turn up or add gain to get more sustain, but the extra fizz just pushes your tone up into the cymbal frequencies and the guitar just can't compete. So the compressor is a good suggestion, too.

    The Goodsell's are great amps. I'm sure these were just tough gigs, even with the perfect amp, it still may have been tough. Better suited, but still tough. Another one for the what works wear journal I reckon.

    -barry.
     
  13. splatt

    splatt david torn / splattercell Gold Supporting Member

    Messages:
    21,383
    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2008
    Location:
    you might find me somewhere.
    all true (except that drummers usually play cymbals, not symbols: ha!).

    ..... it just seems like those 2 of shark-bite's amps were simply underpowered
    (or, don't have enough headroom) for these kindsa gigs.
    there's always something to learn, anyways, which is cool.

    anyways, in rooms where i know the sound is gonna be outta control,
    i keep my amps as close to me as possible..... and, def not on the floor.

    dt / spltrcl
     
  14. redtoploader

    redtoploader Member

    Messages:
    643
    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2005
    Location:
    Big River
    +1. The eq thing is dead on.
     
  15. shark_bite

    shark_bite Member

    Messages:
    5,190
    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2008
    Location:
    outer space
    Nope, no denial at all (take a pause to consider the irony of that statement though). For the bowling alley gig I really should have brought my Bassman. I needed a louder amp with no reverb. It was a HUGE room and 33 watts was not enough, even with the Tone Tubby and the amp stand pointing it at me. For the blues jam, well... that was mostly the sound guy. I've played that amp in that room for at least 2 or 3 gigs beforehand with no problem. Everything was a mess that night sound-wise. Completely out of control.
     
  16. Timmo

    Timmo Member

    Messages:
    3,534
    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2004
    NEVER 'fall in love' with an amp UNTIL you have played it out live.

    ALWAYS best to have more power under the hood than too little........
     
  17. jchan

    jchan Member

    Messages:
    1,583
    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2008
    I typically use an open back 2x12 cab with a G12H30+Greenback mix. That works really well for projecting and hearing myself in a club where there is a wall behind the amp. For outside gigs or one where there isn't a wall behind you, as in this case, a closed back cabinet may have worked better. IMO, if I lift a cabinet off the ground, the bass gets significantly limited and the cab sounds boxy. It may be something to consider, to get a closed back cab for outdoor or "no wall behind you" type gigs.

    Also, you could mic the cab and feed some of the signal back to the monitor mix for you to hear.
     
  18. splatt

    splatt david torn / splattercell Gold Supporting Member

    Messages:
    21,383
    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2008
    Location:
    you might find me somewhere.
    i reread your original post, and altered mine when i felt
    that i understood ya better.
    please don't take umbrage; i mean no harm:
    many of us have been in near-to-precisely the same "place" as you..... including me.
    many times, even.

    understood.
    there are 30w amps that i can pretty much use anywhere, myself:
    any room, at all. so far.
    speaker cabs w/high-dB speakers; more speakers/coverage (like, not less than a 2x12) can help.
    i almost never use fully open-backed cabs.
    the cab is set roughly @ about belly-height, no more than 5ft behind me: not on the floor.
    hth.

    dt / spltrcl
     
  19. mbratch

    mbratch Member

    Messages:
    2,389
    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2003
    Location:
    Webster, NY
    Doh! Good catch. :)
     
  20. splatt

    splatt david torn / splattercell Gold Supporting Member

    Messages:
    21,383
    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2008
    Location:
    you might find me somewhere.
    i agree with that, generally;
    though, i think that it is possible to learn how-to-discern
    which amps will work for ya, live, w/o having yet played 'em, live.

    dt / spltrcl
     

Share This Page