Thursday, September 18, 2008

9.14 Reverb

Covenant Life had a wonderful surprise this last Sunday when Mark Mullery taught us from Ephesians 1:3-6. CJ Mahaney came down with a virus, so Mark was the pinch preacher. At the last minute, we weren't sure he was going to be able to preach either, which you can hear more about when you listen to the message.

Comment request: what would you recommend we do in the service if a preacher doesn't show up for whatever reason?

Here's a reminder of what happened on Sunday:
Sound

Dave mixed in Julie's place this Sunday, and I thought everything went very well musically. Dave, thanks for finding out exactly when individual singers were going to take lines and practicing that aspect of the mix during the rehearsal. Those moments were more natural and less abrupt than they've been in the past, and I'm confident your preparation contributed to that improvement.

One note that Dave made on his checklist was to add a reminder for all mixers to set approximate gain levels on the handheld and headset mics as well as confirm that they working in the house. In order for this to be effective, whoever is assisting the mixer with testing those mics must speak up and use the mic as it will be used in the service. An almost-whispered "check-check-check" won't cut it, so hold that handheld up close or put the lav on your ear. Then talk loudly and long enough for the mixer to get a good gain set.

Finally, a quick note on noise gates. Noise gates are used on channels that have a hiss or fuzz, and they automatically turn off the microphone when it is not in use. Dave had one set up on the Rhodes this last Sunday because the amp seemed particularly noisy. This worked very well for the sound of the whole band, but its effect was odd when Ken tried to play the Rhodes softly behind someone talking. The sound was very fuzzy when Ken played but then it went away abruptly in between chords. In these cases, it may be better to de-insert the noise gate and lower the overall level to reduce the distraction. Even better, Ken changed to play the synth in the second service.

Lighting

This weekend was a sad moment for the lighting team. This was Ken G's last week behind the controls (for now!), and we'll miss him this next year. Thanks, Ken, for the years of service and leadership you've provided in the area of lighting. Please thank Ken when you see him and pray for the health of his extended family when you think of him.

As far as notes, I have only one for lighting operators. You can feel free to largely ignore the indications of what will happen at the end of the service. As you know, how we conclude the service is largely left up the Spirit's direction and the final content of the message. With that in mind, make it a practice to plan how you can smoothly get into both a worship look and a speaking look at the end, so that you are ready for anything. That way, if we change things up, you won't be struggling to find the right cue.

Video

And there was more sorrow up in the video room. It looks like this was the last Sunday for Peter to be a Video Producer. He's been a lifer so far, one of the originals, serving from day 1 of IMAG, but now the Lord has called him to other responsibilities on Sundays. We'll miss you, too, my friend. I'm glad I get to see you around the office and twitterland.

Only one note for video also. Here is a refresher from last week's reverb post:
We did have a couple instances when the cameras went live to the main screen before the shots were really ready. As a reminder to camera and house directors: make sure you talk about how you will communicate ready-ness. If you are a sub or working with another who is a sub, please meet ahead of time to discuss your normal practices and how you will communicate with each other.
In addition, house directors should listen to the camera director's communication with the camera operators when transitions are coming. If it sounds like the camera director is close to getting a new shot, the house director can pause just a moment longer before taking cameras live.

Thanks to all! Please add your comments or suggestions to the discussion.

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

I have been in Church's where they just spent the whole time with worship music and prayer like we have led by 2 or 3 times a year led by Bob Kauflin. I think most people would be enriched by it. Maybe a short devotional by one of the Pastors as well.

David MacKenzie said...

Another thought about wireless mic testing. I wonder if we could move that up to before the band rehearsal. Normally we do it afterward, around 8:35, when the early birds are already seated in the auditorium and listening and talking. I think many sound people are uncomfortable testing a mic full volume with an audience like that, when it's really time to be playing the walk-in music.

Anonymous, I enjoy those times, too. Covenant Life does them 2-3 times a year, only they're on Friday evenings rather than Sunday mornings.

David MacKenzie said...

A note about the Rhodes piano: Ken told me afterward that he thinks CLC's has a builtin preamp powered by a 9v battery. If that battery is going dead, that might cause an increase in noise. I don't know if anyone checked it that Sunday.

David Wilcox said...

Dave, I'll try to make that change in the checklist. Great idea. Thanks.