Vans Warped Tour

Sep 1, 2003 12:00 PM, by Sarah Benzuly and Breean Lingle


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The Vans Warped Tour is reportedly the largest festival tour currently running in North America, bringing the top names in modern punk — Rancid, Andrew W.K., Sum 41, Dropkick Murphys, The Used, Pennywise, Less Than Jake and so many others — together on four stages. Showgoers also kept an eye on the daredevil skateboarding tricks on the half-pipe that loomed adjacent to the two main stages.

The tour began its cross-country trek in mid-June, making stops along the West Coast (where Mix caught it at Pier 30/32 in San Francisco), and then continuing into the heart of the Midwest and wrapping up in New Jersey. Crew chief and lead systems engineer, as well as monitor engineer for Simple Plan, Daniel Bonneau has been handling this festival for the past two years; tour company Industrial Sound has been supplying the equipment for nine years.

Daniel Bonneau reports that the two main stages are running Yamaha 4000s at FOH, while the smaller stages rely on a 3k. “We've had so much rain, wind and dust, those consoles hold out through everything,” he says. “I've had two gallons of water dumped on one of them. In the morning, I just dried it up, pulled out a few modules and dried those up, and we're good to go for another day.” Bonneau says that the mixes are straightforward, and he uses only a few pieces of outboard gear: two Yamaha SPX-990s, and a TC Electronic M2K and 2290 delay.

Each band gets a standard mic setup: Vocals are SM58 (though Dropkick Murphys use OM7s) and Beta 58s, all supplied by Industrial Sound. Bass gets a Beta 52 on the cabinet, JDI direct boxes and a passive DI line. Guitars are all 57s. Drum mics include SM98s on toms, 52 on the kick, Beta 91 inside the kick, and hi-hats and overheads are 81s.

With so many bands playing during one day, Bonneau reports that there are no soundchecks; instead, each band gets a line check. The P.A. consists of EAW 850s with six subs a side, which are proprietary enclosures from Industrial Sound.

An Adamson 840 console handles monitor world, again for durability. All of the wedges and sidefills are driven by Crown amps. The speakers themselves are all proprietary enclosures from Industrial Sound with JBL components. Most bands are not using in-ears, except for Andrew W.K.'s drummer and Sum 41. “They're coming in with their own consoles, and we're just giving them a third split,” Bonneau says. “They're getting every input into their own console, and then from there it breaks out.”

Most of the bands do not have the luxury of bringing their own monitor engineers. Instead, Bonneau relies on the Industrial Sound crew. “All of the guys I have out here have been around for a long time, so they're helping me out,” Bonneau concludes, “and it's really a learning experience for a lot of engineers out here, and for myself. This is pretty big for me; I'm enjoying it. As long as the weather stays on our side — no more hail, no more tornadoes!”

FOH Engineers

Jon Martin
Jaramah Ball
Jason Michaels

Monitor Engineers

Jeff Eastland
Tim Illian
Alex Fletcher

Patch Masters

Dave Gibney
Josh Bolin

Vans Warped Tour bonus photos by Steve Jennings.

The stage on San Francisco's Pier 32; photo by Steve Jennings

Crew chief/lead systems engineer Daniel Bonneau; photo by Steve Jennings

Less Than Jake onstage; photo by Steve Jennings

Pennywise making noise; photo by Steve Jennings

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