Soundcheck: Billy Joel

Jan 1, 2008 12:00 PM, Photos and text by Steve Jennings

Polls


Education Guide

Mix is gearing up to present its longstanding annual Audio Education Guide in its November 2014 issue. Want to have your school listed in the directory, or do you need to update your current directory listing? Add an image, program description, or a logo to your listing! Get your school in the Mix Education Guide 2014.

Following an extended North American tour last year, piano man Billy Joel made a few select stops across the U.S., including Oakland, Calif.'s Oracle Arena, where Mix caught up with the artist and crew. Front-of-house engineer Brian Ruggles, who's been working with Joel for the past 35 years, is mixing on a Harrison/Showco Showconsole, using built-in dynamics. “I chose to use this board for its rich analog sound quality and the fact its two work surfaces can accommodate a total of 80 inputs. I like certain digital consoles like the Digidesign, but there's a certain warmth I like with analog.” Ruggles' slimmed-down outboard rack houses a TC Electronic TC 2290 and TC 5000, Lexicon PCM70 and Eventide Harmonizer.

Mike Pirich

Mike Pirich

Monitor engineer Mike Pirich is also manning a Showconsole, using somewhere in the vicinity of 70 inputs. Rack gear includes Dolby Lake Processor, Yamaha SPX990s, Drawmer DS201s and Summit DCL-200s. Joel sings through a Shure SM58 and is on Sensaphonics in-ears; all the musicians who play upstage of Joel are using 2XS models. “As for Billy's keyboard setup, that is completely top-secret info!” Pirich declares. “No, it's really a Kurzweil keyboard and PC1 sound module. All the patch changes are done by Billy's longtime assistant, Wayne Williams.”

Brian Ruggles with Billy Joel

Brian Ruggles with Billy Joel

The Clair Bros. P.A. comprises 14 i4s and 12 i4Bs per side, eight i4s and eight i4Bs per side (sidefill), eight i3s a side for rear-fill, four R-4 under the stage (front-fill), four S-4 subs/side with four P-2 speakers/side on top of the subs.

Both engineers send special thanks to the rest of their crew, including Cliff Downey, Craig “Sprout” Robertson, Tony Rossi and Josh Weibel.






Acceptable Use Policy
blog comments powered by Disqus

Mix Books

Modern Recording and Mixing

This 2-DVD set will show you how the best in the music industry set up a studio to make world-class records. Regardless of what gear you are using, the information you'll find here will allow you to take advantage of decades of expert knowledge. Order now $39.95

Mastering Cubase 4

Electronic Musician magazine and Thomson Course Technology PTR have joined forces again to create the second volume in their Personal Studio Series, Mastering Steinberg's Cubase(tm). Edited and produced by the staff of Electronic Musician, this special issue is not only a must-read for users of Cubase(tm) software, but it also delivers essential information for anyone recording/producing music in a personal-studio. Order now $12.95

Newsletters

MixLine

Delivered straight to your inbox every other week, MixLine takes you straight into the studio, with new product announcements, industry news, upcoming events, recent recording/post projects and much more. Click here to read the latest edition; sign up here.

MixLine Live

Delivered straight to your inbox every other week, MixLine Live takes you on the road with today's hottest tours, new sound reinforcement professional products, recent installs, industry news and much more. Click here to read the latest edition; sign up here.

[an error occurred while processing this directive]

The Wire, a virtual press conference offering postings of the latest gear and music news, direct from the source. Visit the The Wire for the latest press postings.