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  #1  
Old 09-22-2009, 03:16 PM
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Default On Stage - Do You Use Click Tracks & In Ears?

I hope to soon return to playing live, something I have not done since 1985!

I've been using the Roland click on my V-drums when playing tracks that I practice to, but I now need to apply it to someone else's material, so I've just picked up a Tama Rhythm Watch and am looking at some Shure SCL2-CL.

I am considering using the click track and in ear monitors live, especially as there could be a lot of intro backing tracks and sound effects to stay with during tracks.

My question is how many drummers do this these days?
I know most major band drummers will, but how about at club level, do you guys playing those venues do this?

Any tips, suggestions, pit falls etc?

Thanks in advance.
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Old 09-22-2009, 03:50 PM
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Default Re: On Stage - Do You Use Click Tracks & In Ears?

I haven't seen it at club level, but that's not to say it isn't used. If you have a lot of automatically sequenced parts, I would recommend using one.
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Old 09-22-2009, 03:59 PM
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Default Re: On Stage - Do You Use Click Tracks & In Ears?

I would only suggest this if you have ample time to rehearse the whole band this way. While different types of monitoring can be a matter of preference mixed with necessity, it can be disastrous to have the band "fall off" the click if people aren't used to it.

I like playing with my Shure Iso headphones (almost like In Ears) but it doesn't give me a great feeling of security as to how my playing is blending, sound level, wise with other players on stage. You really have to rely on your sound guy to keep everything tight so you can tell how much to lean in to your kit.

I've had to pull them out and put them back in from time to time and it's no fun.

Since you've had a 20+ year hiatus from gigging live, take your time. Play unmic'd, mic'd with no in-ears, etc..

If you want to have a click going for just you then you've got to make sure everybody else stays with you. I can't tell you how many times, a guitar player, especially who is the leader of the band, insists on controlling the tempo. When I was playing with a band that had some complicated arrangements and all the percussion parts were pre-programmed on an Alesis by the guitar player, I brought in the click and everybody was OK with it. It was the perfect time to introduce it.

Otherwise, I wouldn't worry about it too much. It's nice to have the push pull feel of less than perfect time. Unless of course you're doing a lot of hip hop.
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Old 09-23-2009, 02:11 AM
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Default Re: On Stage - Do You Use Click Tracks & In Ears?

Hello,

I haven't posted much here (twice?!) but thought I'd respond to your question. The combo you are considering is pretty much exactly what I used for a while, although I don't recall which model of shure in ears I was using (the entry level price point).

Like you I had taken a big chunk of time off playing live and when I got back into drumming I spent much time playing with a click. I started using it with my band playing live as well and it definitely gave me more confidence. This was at the dive bar level as well.

I eventually gave up on it for the live setting because I was worried I was becoming to dependent on a click and with a few of our song there were parts where small tempo shifts were needed.

Whenever I practice alone I have the click on constantly.
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Old 09-23-2009, 02:23 AM
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Default Re: On Stage - Do You Use Click Tracks & In Ears?

Hi StG

I appreciate you coming out of the shadows to reply especially as what you have said puts me at ease.

I won't be using the click on all tracks or from start to finish, there will be too many tempo changes and as I discovered today, even the originals that we will cover were not at a constant BPM, so I'll use it as count ins and reference points during a track.

TTNW, I appreciate your advise and will certainly try with and without IEM

The original drummer is also very well known for his push pull feel, so I need to keep it loose.

Since this will be my first band in 25 years, I lack confidence on top of being rusty, so I am trying to get a head start on having all bases covered to give myself a bit more confidence.

Thanks guys.

Anyone else with live experience with IEMs?
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Old 09-23-2009, 03:06 AM
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Default Re: On Stage - Do You Use Click Tracks & In Ears?

With one band I always play to a click track - in rehearsal and live. It started as a part of preparations for going into studio, but we decided to stick to it for all occasions because it works for our music. We also intend to start using some backing tracks and effects, and that would be really hard to get to work without click tracks.

My suggestion would be to start using them every time you play the songs, with or without the rest of the band. Also, learn to play the songs by heart and to a click only, without depending on other instruments to remember all the parts and transitions. It's pretty difficult to pay attention to both the click and the band at the same time, so everyone else should be very disciplined in following you.
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Old 09-23-2009, 04:09 AM
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Default Re: On Stage - Do You Use Click Tracks & In Ears?

I've done it with three different bands.

I've always used headphones; I picked a pair that didn't isolate my from outside sounds very well, so I can still hear the band, and monitors. In ears would have been nice, but they used to much more expensive.
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Old 09-23-2009, 05:43 AM
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Default Re: On Stage - Do You Use Click Tracks & In Ears?

I use a click track sometimes at practice but not live. I don't know, it seems to take the energy out of a live performance.
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Old 09-23-2009, 06:40 AM
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Default Re: On Stage - Do You Use Click Tracks & In Ears?

Yes,

It solves the argument coming from another band member saying "You are rushing/dragging tonight. It wasn't that tempo last night." I am the only one who hears it and they should be listening to me for the tempo and not the other way around. I have also been in bands that use sequences live (which more and more bands are these days) which requires the use of a click track.

No energy is lost during a performance; they other members just need to settle down, shut up and play their own instrument instead of telling me how to play mine.


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Old 09-23-2009, 07:48 AM
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Default Re: On Stage - Do You Use Click Tracks & In Ears?

At my last church we played in a very large room requiring amplification and the drums were in an iso booth. So I was very happy to learn they had a headphone monitor system.

I use a set of semi-isolating full-cup headphones when I perform with that band, so that I can adjust the volume level in the phones to where it's not competing with the sound coming off the drums. Since the drums are miked, if I need to hear them, I can turn them up individually at my workstation. (Yeah... every instrument and vocal gets its own mix, controllable at the monitor.)

We very rarely use click tracks. The various guitarists who lead the band on different weeks all have pretty good rhythmic awareness, since they mostly play rhythm parts.We also have a stellar keyboard player who can put a click track from his rig into a separate track for me if I need it, but his playing is so solid I usually just turn him up if I feel like I need the rhythmic reinforcement.
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Old 09-23-2009, 09:07 AM
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Default Re: On Stage - Do You Use Click Tracks & In Ears?

I have had to play live with a click and backing track playing on cruise ship and similar production shows. It makes it easy to have strings, percussion, and other "sweeteners" in the mix.

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Old 09-23-2009, 09:18 AM
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Default Re: On Stage - Do You Use Click Tracks & In Ears?

Never in a live situation. Not to say its a bad idea to incorporate a click track.Some bands use them ..some dont . If tempo is fast or slow,it can be quickly adjusted while the song is played. IMO, a click track disrupts the entire feeling of performance. I do use a click track in the studio tho~In live situations..our lead vocalist counts off the song..
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Old 09-23-2009, 01:58 PM
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Default Re: On Stage - Do You Use Click Tracks & In Ears?

Hi
Live shows...I'll use a metronome as a reference to count in some songs. Denis
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Old 09-23-2009, 02:07 PM
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Default Re: On Stage - Do You Use Click Tracks & In Ears?

Thanks folks, it seems that quite a few people do use this system so I will try it and see how I get on.
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Old 09-23-2009, 02:12 PM
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Default Re: On Stage - Do You Use Click Tracks & In Ears?

We trigger backing tracks from a Roland SPD-S for a couple of songs. These have a click track in one channel (which goes into my headphones) and the track in the other channel (which goes out to the front of house).
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Old 09-23-2009, 02:15 PM
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Default Re: On Stage - Do You Use Click Tracks & In Ears?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Naigewron View Post
We trigger backing tracks from a Roland SPD-S for a couple of songs. These have a click track in one channel (which goes into my headphones) and the track in the other channel (which goes out to the front of house).
Interesting, are these backing tracks complete tracks or just sections?
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Old 09-23-2009, 02:21 PM
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Default Re: On Stage - Do You Use Click Tracks & In Ears?

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Originally Posted by Cuban View Post
Interesting, are these backing tracks complete tracks or just sections?
We have three complete tracks that contain a click track, and some samples that don't rely on a specific tempo that can be triggered at any time.

We're also working on dividing up the complete tracks (since they take up a lot of room on the sampler) so that we can trigger sections while playing. This may or may not work out, we'll see how it goes :-)
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Old 09-23-2009, 02:24 PM
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Default Re: On Stage - Do You Use Click Tracks & In Ears?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Naigewron View Post
We have three complete tracks that contain a click track, and some samples that don't rely on a specific tempo that can be triggered at any time.

We're also working on dividing up the complete tracks (since they take up a lot of room on the sampler) so that we can trigger sections while playing. This may or may not work out, we'll see how it goes :-)
Once again, very interesting, thanks.
Are the tracks in question on your MySpace, I'd be interested to hear what you are triggering.

Can you report back later how the splitting up of the tracks in sections works?
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Old 09-23-2009, 02:42 PM
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Default Re: On Stage - Do You Use Click Tracks & In Ears?

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Originally Posted by Cuban View Post
Once again, very interesting, thanks.
Are the tracks in question on your MySpace, I'd be interested to hear what you are triggering.

Can you report back later how the splitting up of the tracks in sections works?
The track "No. 3" is one of the tracks that has a full backing track when we play it live. The backing track consists of all the keyboard and string stuff you can hear, a second "lead" vocal (an octave above the live vocal) in the chorus and parts of the intro guitar riff.
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Old 09-23-2009, 03:21 PM
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Default Re: On Stage - Do You Use Click Tracks & In Ears?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Naigewron View Post
The track "No. 3" is one of the tracks that has a full backing track when we play it live. The backing track consists of all the keyboard and string stuff you can hear, a second "lead" vocal (an octave above the live vocal) in the chorus and parts of the intro guitar riff.
That Sir is a great track - really enjoyed that. Going to listen to your other tracks now as well (expect an 'add' )
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Old 09-23-2009, 05:44 PM
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Default Re: On Stage - Do You Use Click Tracks & In Ears?

"I am considering using the click track and in ear monitors live"

Likewise. There's a product called 'Buddy Beat' that sends a 'tickling impulse' to a clip that you're connected too, like maybe your belt I guess. Yet I don't know whether this innovation works as well as an the ear monitor. Anyone out there ever use it? It would seem a great idea if it'd elminate the use of bulky sound-dampening headphones or ear buds.
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Old 09-23-2009, 05:52 PM
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Default Re: On Stage - Do You Use Click Tracks & In Ears?

i use one live, but if you're gonna use it live, you have to be TIGHT with it. as in NEVER miss a beat, especially if you're using pre-recorded tracks (for like, strings and such, naww mean?). cause if you miss even one beat, it throws EVERYTHING off.

in ear monitors are nice, you can get the mix you want to listen to when you're live, which is REALLY nice if you listen to a particular musician for cues (i personally follow vocals when I play, so i can hit shots with her).

so, that being said, if you have terrible time by yourself, in-ear monitors would be ideal to keep yourself on track. some drummers find that it takes away from "feeling" the music, cause all you're doing is listening to a *click* *click* *click* *click* but... i dunno. personal taste. i use one.
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Old 09-24-2009, 07:34 AM
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Default Re: On Stage - Do You Use Click Tracks & In Ears?

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Originally Posted by jeffwj View Post
I have had to play live with a click and backing track playing on cruise ship and similar production shows. It makes it easy to have strings, percussion, and other "sweeteners" in the mix.

Jeff
Ah yes the cruise ship days! I remember the voice coming in counting and slowing down with the click track retarding and speeding up when the click sped up. They used to use reel-to-reel and then the tape would eventual stretch. Ah, good times!


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Old 09-24-2009, 04:40 PM
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Default Re: On Stage - Do You Use Click Tracks & In Ears?

No, but I am going to start using a click for slow and fast numbers live. In the middle I seem to be able to keep to a steady beat. At the ends like 70 bpm and 130 bpm + I seem to speed up and slow down respectively!!!

Good post
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Old 09-25-2009, 08:03 AM
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Default Re: On Stage - Do You Use Click Tracks & In Ears?

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No, but I am going to start using a click for slow and fast numbers live. In the middle I seem to be able to keep to a steady beat. At the ends like 70 bpm and 130 bpm + I seem to speed up and slow down respectively!!!

Good post
Davo
Or going from a fast tune to slower tune, many musicians tend to speed up.


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Old 09-25-2009, 09:28 AM
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Default Re: On Stage - Do You Use Click Tracks & In Ears?

Yeah true. It must be my weakest playing element - ie to maintain whatever tempo we start at. Other than click track, which would obviously solve the problem, any other tips?

Davo
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Old 09-25-2009, 10:06 AM
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Default Re: On Stage - Do You Use Click Tracks & In Ears?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Davo-London View Post
Yeah true. It must be my weakest playing element - ie to maintain whatever tempo we start at.
Me too. I can practice with a metronome no probs, no desire to rush. But when working with players who speed up when they get excited then I speed up with them. Sometimes I speed up without help from them because I'm looking for energy.

Does anyone know of any recordings by major bands where the band speeds up unintentionally? Of course that doesn't help other than making us speed freaks feel better :)
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Old 09-25-2009, 02:40 PM
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Default Re: On Stage - Do You Use Click Tracks & In Ears?

Exactly. I can work with a click until the cows come home but turn it off and anything can happen!

Davo
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Old 01-21-2010, 03:49 AM
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Default Re: On Stage - Do You Use Click Tracks & In Ears?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Naigewron View Post
We trigger backing tracks from a Roland SPD-S for a couple of songs. These have a click track in one channel (which goes into my headphones) and the track in the other channel (which goes out to the front of house).
I would like to do this also. Do you store the the track on the card and then assign it to a pad for triggering? How much memory does one song take up? Are you including the click track as part of the .wav file? I have about a million questions, but could you briefly describe the process from beginning to end? Thanks a million!
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Old 01-22-2010, 07:35 AM
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Default Re: On Stage - Do You Use Click Tracks & In Ears?

I have mixed sequences down to mp3 form with the click panned all the way to one side, everything mono to both left & right channels, then run a stereo mix to FOH. I get the click side in my IE's and the band gets just the sequence. All from an ipod......

I also know of a 2 man band that uses sequences for the rest of the parts. they do the same thing. All on an ipod. they actually have 2 identical ipods incase one fails/battery, etc
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