Hold still, this won't hurt a bit. The idea was to compare trombone waveforms through different microphones with Hal, my new 1956 O'scope. I tried to make my tone and volume consistent. Test tone was B flat, one whole step below Middle C, at a nominal 234hz. This is almost one octave below tuning standard A440.
Above: This is the horn mic I made, or hacked, really.
Nice definition, good small wiggly stuff. Now look at this:
Above: This is an Electro-Voice RE20, one of the best broadcast mics ever, also a fine trombone mic. Notice the simplified waveform. This mic is renowned for taking the edge off of voices. Is the simpler waveform a result of fewer high-order harmonics, or just fewer odd ones? Check the next:
This is the legendary Shure SM-57, which for me is a terrible trombone mic. First notice the very strong peaks, which if I remember correctly, means a high proportion of second harmonic. 57s are outstanding snare drum mics, perfect for catc...
This was our rig for the HowThings Work show on Nov. 15th, and will be for the foreseeable future.
OK, so what does this all do?
Bringing a horn into a rock club is like riding a zebra into a rodeo. It’s not really that different, but nobody is prepared for it. This rig gives the club board strong and even signals from both horns through good-sounding (surprisingly) mics. Taking charge of our sound from the stage leaves less up to the club sound operator, which has proven to be a distinct advantage. Plus, indicator tubes rock!!
Ribbon mic on Trombone bell goes to panel on back of horn with XLR output. (All quickly removable)
Similar setup for Baritone Sax: Ribbon element sets in lyre holder socket, goes to clamp at bottom crook of horn with XLR output. (Does not interfere with keywork, also quickly removable)
Both mics go into preamps (in camera case from 1976) with XLR outputs to club board and indicator tube output level displays. Two views here, one shows the tubes better, anot...
Starting a band is like building a monster. These days, it’s all about robots, but if you’re forming a band, what you build is a monster, Frankenstein style.
First, you think of all the hottest graves to rob—all the bands that you want to take parts and ideas from. Sound wrong? This is art. This is not about permission. We do this because we have to. All those great bands you love, that always sound new, that no one could have predicted, well, this is how they did it.
Don’t worry. Once the monster is all stitched together, nobody’s going to recognize the components, because if you did it right, it’s such a jarringly original and obvious monster that nobody would care where the parts came from. And anyway, even if they did, we’re talking monster parts built from monster parts built from monster parts, right? Because that’s how everybody has always done it.
At first, the thing really is a monster. It lumbers, drools, walks into walls. You can’t really introduce it to anybody and...