Edit: our equipment has evolved a great deal since this post was written. Come and see us perform to check out all of our new musical toys!
By Claire Barker
Ever wondered what makes the sound you hear at a show? Maybe you want to create a similar sound or are shopping around for some new gear of your own. Perhaps you just want to check we are using the gear that is appropriate for your venue. Read on and see what gear makes us sound the way we do!
What gear gigging musicians use plays a huge part in the sound they get. It varies hugely from act to act and people will always have their own preferences. It’s obviously really important to know that the professionals you hire for your event use safe and great sounding gear.
So what do we use?
We are passionate about the sound we produce (both with our duo and with the function band - www.theclairebarkerband.com) and only use top quality gear. Our speakers are from the DXR range at Yamaha which have taken the world by storm in the last few years and have become highly popular amongst busy gigging musicians. We use a pair of the DXR10’s which give a crystal clear vocal and guitar sound. These are compact but pack a punch when needed and don’t weigh too much or take up much space!
Paul uses the Kemper profiling amp which can create a vast array of different amp sounds and effects . It is an incredible bit of kit and keeps Paul’s inner geek happy finding amazing new sounds! Paul also has the matching foot pedal allowing him control over the sounds with the touch of his foot!
Speaking of foot pedals; I now have a toy of my own (something singers don’t get very often!) in the form of a Boss VE-20 Vocal Performer. This is so perfect for the Duo where there are no backing vocals. It allows me to pre-programme song keys so I can sing three part harmonies. This pedal is amazing! The sound is clear and very human sounding unlike it’s slightly robotic predecessors!
Paul has a stunning Taylor 314ce Acoustic guitar which really is a beautiful sound: It has the zing of a steel strung acoustic mixed with the warmth and depth you would expect from such a great pro instrument brand leader. The acoustic is still a fairly new venture for Paul as he usually has a Fender Stratocaster in his hands or his custom made 7 string Jazz Guitar by the late great Bryan Hill (Paul’s father - An amazingly talented craftsman).
I have a few different microphones but currently am using an EV ND767A. I love this mic, it’s really sturdy and delivers a super crisp sound. Microphones are a very personal choice, but I’m loving these! Never ask me to share my mic!
I also use an Alesis Multi-mix desk to give me ultimate control over my vocal levels. I can add in extra effects if I need to although my pedal does most of this alone!
Most of our equipment has been purchased from the Norwich PMT store. The guys at PMT are always amazingly helpful and have provided excellent service over the years!
So there is an overview of what we bring to our gigs. We take care of our equipment and it is all well maintained and PAT tested for your (and our) safety. See more information about our duo at www.claireandpaulduo.com or even better, come and see us at a show soon!
Will blog again soon!
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