Blue Man Group Tour Profile

Aug 1, 2011, By Sarah Benzuly

You’re never really quite sure what to expect from a Blue Man Group performance. It’s a visual experience, with numerous antics onstage to draw the eye—tickers displaying political messages; commentary on social media and human interactions; directions for the audience; flashing-lights costumes; very large inflated balls bouncing around the hall. And for those seeing their current tour—which is happening simultaneously in a number of cities—you get the best of all “Blue Man” worlds, a “greatest hits,” if you will. From their iconic “three guys pounding on bottom-lit oil cans” splashing colored paint on every down stroke, to booty-shaking hits from their album The Complex, to striking their mallets on instruments created from PVC piping, the Blue Men enthrall their audience. ...

All Access: Bruno Mars and Janelle Monae

Jul 1, 2011, Photos and Text By Steve Jennings

Skyrocketing to the top of the charts, co-headliners Bruno Mars and Janelle Monae’s brought their crowd-pleasing blend of old-school R&B and hip-hop with their “Hooligans in Wonderland” tour. Mix caught up with the crew when they stopped by San Francisco’s Bill Graham Civic Auditorium in early June. ...

Editor's Note: You Can't Beat Live

Jul 1, 2011, By Tom Kenny, Editorial Director

Damn it’s fun to go out and see live music. Pick your act, pick your night. Pick your heroes, pick an unknown. I was lucky enough in early June to be in the Fox Oakland audience for one of only six Buffalo Springfield shows in California, leading up to their headlining gig at Bonnaroo. Stephen Stills can definitely still play that ol’ guitar, Richie Furay looked like the happiest kid at the dance and Neil Young—well, he is a bona fide rock star. The guitar chops, the voice, the humble swagger and punch of a man who has lived the life. The sweet purity of “I Am a Child,” followed by the heart and depth of “Mr. Soul” and the raucousness of “Rockin’ In the Free World.” You didn’t have to be over 40 to appreciate the sound. When it’s live, you don’t even have to like the genre (though I do). You can just tell when magic is happening. ...

HangOut Festival 2011

Jul 1, 2011, By Sarah Benzuly

The second annual HangOut Festival was held May 20-22, 2011, in Gulf Shores, Ala. Thousands flocked to the festival to hear such great performances as those from Paul Simon, the Foo Fighters, Widespread Panic, Rich Aucoin and so many more. Created by Concerts for the Coast, the festival is part of a larger plan to bring much-needed economic support to the Gulf area after the effects of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. ...

Liquid Blue | Secure Sound From 75 Feet

Jul 1, 2011, By Sarah Benzuly

When The Grovler, the technical director/guitarist for band Liquid Blue, needed a behind-the-scenes solution for live access to audio equipment in a back-stage rack from an onstage laptop, he opted for the Gefen USB 2 Extender. It comes with a sender (connected to the audio equipment) and a receiver connected to the stage laptop. One Cat-5 cable feeds the audio to the laptop, reaching distances up to 75 feet. ...

System Fit for a Prince

Jul 1, 2011, By Sarah Benzuly

It was extremely difficult to get a ticket for Prince’s “Welcome 2 America” tour, what with announcing show dates just a few days before an actual gig. And that quick turnaround was also laid in the laps of sound reinforcement provider Rat Sound, or as sound company president Dave Rat says, “Rat got a call on the Thursday and by Sunday we had three semi-trucks of prepped gear headed to Oakland [Calif.] for a 2 a.m. load in.” Since the, the company has supplied the sound system for Prince, including his 21-night run at the Los Angeles Forum. ...

Avid, Midas on Bareilles Tour

Jul 1, 2011, By Sarah Benzuly

Opening for country rockers Sugarland and getting in a couple of headliner shows herself, Sara Bareilles is out in full force this summer, as is an Avid/Midas custom package, thanks to sound company Spectrum Sound. When front-of-house engineer Trey Smith posed the question of achieving the Midas sound on an Avid interface, the sound provider headed straight to their techs to get the job done. ...

Lil Wayne Tour Profile

Jul 1, 2011, By Sarah Benzuly

Rap shows seem to carry a preconception that they are loud, non-musical. But that couldn’t be farther from the truth for Lil Wayne. Blending his hip-hop vocal stylings with a rock-solid band, Lil Wayne’s performance is as tight and dynamic as his smash 2009 multi-Platinum Tha Carter IV. In fact, both front-of-house engineer Demetrius Moore and monitor engineer Sean Sturge stick to the album’s sound to guide them in creating their mixes. ...

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