A sound tech’s primary duty is to help the sound engineer and he has just one major responsibility, which is to be attentive. Load in and cargo out are second only thereto primary responsibility.
There are many facets to listening . First and foremost an honest sound tech will attend to the requirements of the engineer. listening means listening. The engineer should haven’t had any difficulty in the least communicating together with his tech. a number of the common means of communication that are used during shows are:
Two-way radios or loop comm. systems
A nod of the top
A tech must follow his engineer’s lead and must constantly glance at the engineer to ascertain if he needs something. The engineer of any show features a lot on his mind. there are tons he has got to be liable for to realize truly professional results. The engineer must specialize in several things at once: the artists, the sound, and therefore the audience. One thing he shouldn’t need to specialize in is getting his tech’s attention. Anytime the engineer has difficulty communicating together with his tech, the tech is failing to try to do his job. it’s the responsibility of the tech to be attentive. The engineer should never need to leave his seat after the artists arrive. The sound tech must be aware of the requirements of the artists too. When the artists are fixing, it’s the sound tech’s responsibility to supply the following:
Hand each artist his or her cable and tell them, “This is for you,” or “You connect here” for instance.
We aren’t to touch the artists’ equipment and that they aren’t to touch ours (within reason in fact .) we’ve to touch the drums to mic them, but we politely ask if that’s okay and that we confirm to ask if any of our mics are within the way of the drummer. Singers, obviously, will find it necessary to touch our microphones which is okay too. But, it’s the sound tech’s job to form all necessary adjustments to microphone stands to get the optimum placement for each artist. No artist should ever need to adjust a mic stand. Whenever that happens the sound tech isn’t doing his job. The artist should only need to specialize in his instrument and his performance. Playing music is an emotional experience and if an artist becomes perturbed because he has got to adjust his mic stand it’ll affect his emotions negatively which will degrade his performance.
The sound tech must adjust the monitors to suit the artists’ preferences. Sometimes they need them closer, or farther away, or turned this manner or that. it’s critical to stay the monitors out of the feedback zone, i.e. not pointing at microphones that may induce feedback.
Whenever the engineer leaves his seat to attend to those duties, the sound tech is failing to try to do his job. The engineer cannot specialize in fixing the board, and therefore the monitor mix, and therefore the artists, and therefore the audience if he has got to do the tech’s job too. the foremost important job of the sound tech is to be attentive. listening means quite getting to the requirements of the engineer and therefore the artists. listening means attending the show and listening in the least time. Listen for problems that will arise and alert the engineer of any concerns.
Look at the system. If there’s a speaker that’s off-axis, the sound tech should notice something like that directly and properly without hesitation. If an artist is trying to speak something, the sound tech should be listening thereto too. it’s the engineer’s responsibility to know those communications that come from the artists during a show, but, more importantly, it’s the sound tech’s job to be aware of the requirements of the engineer and therefore the artist. which may mean helping the engineer find out what the artist is trying to speak. Furthermore, if a microphone stands slips, or gets removed from the position, or is knocked over, the sound tech must correct that directly.
Sound techs always wear black. this is often partly because they often need to slip out on stage during a performance. Their black clothing reflects less light than the other color and thus draws less attention to them than if they were wearing fluorescent yellow for instance. But it also tells the audience that he’s not a member of the band. he’s a sound tech and he’s just doing what sound techs do. he’s listening to the requirements of the artist or the engineer, and he’s doing it well.
Bottom line: if you do not learn anything from this text, then a minimum of learning this one thing. A sound tech’s primary duty is to be attentive by listening in the least time and getting to the requirements of others for the only objective of a flawless show.