Mic Suggestions / Singing and Drumming

Witterings

Silver Member
I can sing ....... of sorts anyway ...... and I think I can drum ..... many would argue the toss ........ but I struggle to do both at the same time.

What's other peoples thoughts on drumming and singing, it seems to be becoming more and more in nwer bands.

If I'm drumming and I loose it I know I am and can pull it back in so an audience nor the other band members would realise but if I try and sing and loose it literally the wheels come off, complete rabbit in the headlights situation and a train crash you really don't want to see !!!!

Even if you just do backing vocals. most of the time you're needed at the transition from verse to chorus and back again and that's when most fills take place so you end up compromising so the drumming takes a bit of a back seat ????

I'd love to hear peoples thoughts on this and if they feel the compromise is worth it or not or if with time you can do both equally well.

Also be really interested in any headset mic suggestions as the room we practice there's no chance of a boom stand, I've heard for wireless £120 will buy you complete rubbish and you need to spend £350 but I really don't want to part with that amount of money for something that may just be a trial.
Whilst wired isn't my ideal at least I could try it durining practices and see how it works out, again looking for soemthing that will "Do the job for now" so not top quality but I don't like cheap S*-t either, can anybody recommend something to at least start out with ???

I saw these http://www.dv247.com/microphones/shure-wh20-xlr-dynamic-headset-microphone--28803
and know Shure are a good name and if I need to I'll spend that but again if anybody knows of anything half decet for less or comments on this mic I'd be really interested.

PS quick edit, I guess I want dynamic rather than condenser or it'll be picking up the drums / cymbals as well ????????????????

Edit Edit: Won't it pick up loads of breathing noise as you do that crazy fill that pushes you to the limit :) I've got this awful habit of humming to myself while I practice anyway ... not good :)
 

opentune

Platinum Member
There are some really good singing drummers out there. Levon Helm or Taylor Hawkins come to mind. If you watch him in the Last Waltz, Levon actually pulled off some pretty great fills/moves while keeping his head on mic.
I am not one of them. I can sing a little but drumming is then compromised.
After a few years trying I am of the opinion that it best for me not to sing and drum. Leave singing duties to somebody else in the band, whose instrument does not involve all 4 limbs.
 

Bo Eder

Platinum Member
I sing and play all the time. I would argue I've gotten more gigs because I could sing rather than play great drums. Singing for me helps me learn the songs alot faster and helps cement in my mind what I really want from the drummer too, so it's a win-win situation. It really just ups your musicianship.

As far as headmics go, I have a couple, but I find I always prefer a good ol' Shure SM58 or SM57 on a gooseneck mic stand, because my vocal technique is based on the ability to move in closer or farther away from the mic as well. I suppose if I had an in-line compressor on the headmic all the time then it wouldn't matter if I scream or not, but I really like to just control the dynamics myself, because sometimes I want to distort depending on what I'm singing. I've used the headset mic in some of my videos on my YouTube channel, though.

In your situation, the Shure WH20 headset mic is a wired dynamic and sounds pretty good. It is basically an updated SM10. It's probably your only choice if you're looking for a dynamic. Although having a condenser mic doesn't necessarily mean you'll be having feedback issues or picking up too much of the environment around you, it will sound different in the mix if everyone else is using a dynamic mic, and you'll have slightly different mixing needs from everybody else, so prepare for that. A handy device to have for the headset mic is a footswitch to turn it off in case you have to cought. ProCo makes a little stomp box called a Cough Drop that was made just for this.
 

Mark_S

Silver Member
It's not so much condensor vs dynamic - it's more the pattern that affects what a mic picks up. You need a mic with a tight pattern, like cardoid or supercardoid. It varies from mic to mic. You can get handheld stage condensor mics that have very good rejection, like the Neumann KMS 105, gorgeous mic! I've used 2 of those at once on stage with a loud rock band.

I know you're looking for a headset mic, but out of the standard mics the Audix OM-6 has got a tight pattern so would be good for that sort of thing, and no offense to Bo, sounds a hell of a lot better than an SM58 and less prone to feedback (due to the pattern and response).

Hope some of that helps in some way!
 

Witterings

Silver Member
Thanks for the input, I think I'll give the Shure a go and see how I get on with the whole experience, may be a 2nd hand one for sale on flea bay in a couple of weeks when the rest of the band hear me sing :)
 

tard

Gold Member
I do quite a bit of singing from behind the kit, from some back up to lead vocals and although I am a big fan of Shure products I did not care for the Shure head set mics and ended up with an Audio Technica atm73a cardioid condenser which I have been using for several years now and has most of the features that I was looking for in a head set mic. Its light at only 1.1 oz so the set stays put on your head and it has a thin wire and a belt clip unit so it doesnt pull the set off your head when your moving around, some other head sets have a heavy cable and it can pull on the headset. It also has a roll off switch on the pack so you can turn it on and off without hoping the sound man will remember to turn you on or off when needed and it can either take an AA battery or run off of phantom power if your board happens to have it.

http://www.audio-technica.com/cms/wired_mics/599bac1773e3dd00/index.html
 

PacifRick

Senior Member
I am in exactly the same situation. Standing away from the drums, I feel like I can sing pretty decent. As soon as I sing from behind the kit, my control, phrasing and drumming all go to craps. I have been practicing, however I don't think I'll ever get satisfactory results. For me it's either, pick a song that is dull on drums with a simple beat and concentrate on singing, or sing backup to any song whenever I can throw it in. The former drummer in the band I'm in now would sing a lot, but his drumming suffered noticeably.

One thing that doesn't help me in a live situation, is being a drummer for years with no concern of my ear health, I can't hear myself so well from the in-ear monitors that I use. I can never get enough of my own vocal through the mix.

I think I enjoy playing"well" vs sacrificing my playing just to sing....drumming is way more enjoyable!
 

Witterings

Silver Member
tard,
The audio technica looks really good but they're about £200 which I didn't really want to spend just for a trial.
Is there any way I can get the cheap ones that are combined heaphone / microphone that plug into a pc to work in this situation going into a mixing desk, I think they need some sort of power though and think phantom may be too much, it'd also need something that converted a 3.5mm jack to XLR if it was going to use the phantom power.
 

tard

Gold Member
tard,
The audio technica looks really good but they're about £200 which I didn't really want to spend just for a trial.
Is there any way I can get the cheap ones that are combined heaphone / microphone that plug into a pc to work in this situation going into a mixing desk, I think they need some sort of power though and think phantom may be too much, it'd also need something that converted a 3.5mm jack to XLR if it was going to use the phantom power.
A cheap mic is going to give you poor quality, even the 73a isnt going to be quite as good as a beta 58 or an atm 41he, great for live but when recording I do my drums separate from the vocals to get the best quality possible. You can always use a stand and drop a 58 or 41 in from above or behind or try to get a 73a used.http://www.ebay.com/itm/Audio-Technica-ATM73A-Condenser-Wireless-Cable-Professional-Microphone-/290669849875?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item43ad45ed13
 
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