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Waves Plugins Power Live Streamed Shows by Donald Fagen-Produced Peter More

May 04, 2020

During Covid, musicians and live engineers have found creative ways of keeping busy and presenting their music to fans. We heard from FOH engineer Herbert “George” Chapman (Marilyn Manson) on how he produced a live-stream show for Peter More using Waves gear and plugins.

FOH Engineer Owen Charles (photo credit – Tom Pallant)

FOH engineer Herbert “George” Chapman

During Covid, musicians and live engineers have found creative ways of keeping busy and presenting their music to fans. Exploring his latest record, Beautiful Disrepair (produced by Donald Fagen), Peter More set up a live-stream show from the Cabin Studio in Austin, Texas. FOH engineer Herbert “George” Chapman, who has mixed FOH for Marilyn Manson, Deadland Ritual and Joe Perry, and has mixed monitors for Steely Dan as well as Donald Fagen on his solo tour, discusses his use of SoundGrid Rack for Venue, Waves SoundGrid Extreme Server and Waves plugins for the online production.

“In this time of the Covid-19” says Chapman, “we happened to be recording at my Cabin Studio just when the quarantine started. Peter More had a tour planned and still wanted to perform, so we jumped onto the live-stream bandwagon and started with a few short set live-streams over Facebook and YouTube, and then we were asked to do the SofaKing Fest stream. I think this is a great way to still reach the fans and keep the creative energy flowing.”

Watch Peter More – Live at Chapman Cabin Studio

Discussing the setup, Chapman says, “We had to come up with a simple solution using my Avid S6L 32D and a Waves SoundGrid Rack for Venue enabling me to run Waves plugins directly within the console. I am running through a Waves SoundGrid Extreme Server, then taking a basic audio output straight into the computer and using the computer camera as the video. We then start up YouTube or Facebook using a streaming key, and then copy and paste that into OBS which talks to the social media sites, so you get the video and audio though that. The reason for using OBS is that it bypasses the typical live stream compression of the social media sites, so the sound and video are much clearer. OBS basically gives you multiple audio, video and live-streaming settings to optimize performance.”

Talking about some of his go-to Waves plugins, Chapman comments, “We started with the Waves F6 Floating-Band Dynamic EQ, placing it on every input in order to accurately EQ as well as compress or expand frequencies, to enhance whatever vocal or instrument is happening at the time. Since I started using the F6, it is my go-to EQ, as it gives you so much control over anything it’s on. I also use the SSL G-Channel as a master buss compressor, because it really adds to the sound of whatever it is on, and it helps keep everything in control. I also use it for parallel compression applications such as on drums or other grouped instruments.”

Pictured Left – Peter More; Right – lead guitar player Jose Juan Poyatos

Pictured Left – Peter More; Right – lead guitar player Jose Juan Poyatos

“Waves Primary Source Expander is another Waves plugin I use a lot, to control background noise and cut down on unwanted sounds around each mic. It lets me really tighten up the mix. This is a super handy plugin to have in a live setting as well. Waves H-Delay Hybrid Delay is my go-to delay, which I use for all my tempo and slap delay purposes and for adding tails to certain phrases or words in the songs. It is so clear and precise, and it has lots of features to let you really dial in the delay you need for any application. Waves’ C6 Multiband Compressor is another great compressor that comes in handy when you need that ‘do-it-all multi-band compression.’ I’m using this on the acoustic guitars and anywhere else it’s needed for that extra accurate frequency compression.”

Discussing his master buss setup, Chapman says, “On the master of the mix and sometimes on individual instruments, I use the Waves CLA-76 Compressor/Limiter to take the edge off of the mix and enhance the overall sound, it really pulls things together nicely. I also use a Waves L2 Ultramaximizer clocked with the desk at 96k as a final stage of compression and boost, to get everything back to a nice tight overall level and sound. It gives the mix this professional sparkle that takes it from being an already good sound to a great professional and polished sound.”

Concluding, he says, “I’m sort of new to the whole live-streaming thing, but so far, I’ve been using Waves plugins just as I would mixing – maybe hitting the master compressor a little harder, just to keep everything in a nice range, so it translates nicely to whatever the people at home are hearing the mix on, such as their phone, computer, tablet, etc.”

Check out Pooch’s corner on what live sound engineers can do at home.

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