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the trust thing
Old 4th October 2016
Gear Maniac
🎧 5 years
the trust thing

Robb, thanks for hanging out here! It's a pleasure to read through what good questions already have been asked and your answers to them.

My questions are from the point of a weekend warrior, doing (mostly live) sound next to a regular day job. Where running sound is a one man show more often than not. In my experience, mixing alone is only part of the job, and I daresay even less than half of it.
I do have opinions of my own on these questions, but would love to hear your thoughts as of someone who surely started off small some time back in the past, but now stands where you stand today.

What's your perspective on trust between the sound provider - especially the mixing guy - and other parties involved, mainly the band itself? What degree or amount of trust would you expect right from the start, for being hired at all? What are your thoughts on earning trust, how does it work, to what degree you think it's acceptable to actively work on it until you claim kind of a blind trust that your work is good? Meaning you're making the very best of the situation.

How do you react when the trust you think should be there just isn't? What ways you try to go to get to a point you think is acceptable? At which point do you decide to quit, how'd you do it keeping up a professional manner?

In which way does the size of the pay cheque influence this decision?

Maybe most interesting of all to me: Being where you are today, do you handle such situations differently? (Do they even really occur to you still?) Knowing what you know today, would you tell your past self to act differently from how you did back then? Or would you act the same being in a position you were in at that time?

I'm finding it a bit difficult to put into words and questions what I have in mind. Hope you get the meaning of it.

Old 10th October 2016
Special Guest
robballan's Avatar
🎧 5 years
Hi Nathan
Good question. Trust is everything between an engineer and the band/artist. I can't imagine working with someone without it. I think the technology nowadays makes it easier to get that trust. Using virtual soundcheck means the band can sit at FOH with me and hear exactly what I'm doing, make suggestions but mainly feel reassured that their music is being delivered to the audience how they it should be. Back in the day they would get second hand reports from their friends and family. Or the bloke at the bar in ht back of the club who thought the bass was too loud. Everyone's mother thought their son was too quiet on stage!
At the end of the day its their music, we just make sure that what they are doing on stage is experienced by the audience properly. We're like a bridge between the musical ideas of the band and the paying audience. We're the third most important element in that equation so I think humility is essential. Superstar roadie egos are boring and miss the point. (and get you fired).
One last point: I always say to younger engineers -if they ask- that the most important way to succeed is to be enthusiastic, polite, on time and fun to be around. An awesome snare sound helps but if you're going to be on busses and planes endlessly with the same group of people the person with the great attitude and ok skills wins over the person with a poor attitude and great skills. Never think you're too good for your gig. Its your gig, you chose it do it, so do it to the utmost of your ability, with total commitment and with a smile on your face.
You asked does the size of the pay check influence decisions. No, it can't, if you do a badly payed job really well maybe the next one will be better paid and the one after that better still.
I would tell my younger self to start learning about computers and digital audio earlier than I did. I was a terrible analogue snob for way beyond the point it made sense. Dude hope that is what you were after. ask a supplementary if I missed the point. cheers
Old 10th October 2016 | Show parent
Gear Maniac
🎧 5 years
Originally Posted by robballan ➡️
Dude hope that is what you were after. ask a supplementary if I missed the point.
Not at all. Think you just nailed the essentials of it. Thanks a bunch!!

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