The music industry’s top drummers converged on the Dallas area for the second annual International Drummers For Jesus Celebration.
This year’s event was held at Lakepointe Church in Rockwall, TX. The evening was kicked off with a concert showcasing internationally-renowned drummers and percussionists from a variety of different genres, including rock, jazz, pop, Latin and drum corps, along with Dallas’ leading musicians and vocalists.
The drumming festival included performances by artists Alex Acuna, Sheila E., Vinnie Colaiuta, Teddy Campbell, Tommy Aldridge, Gerald Heyward, Sean McCurley and many more.
The guest artists played at one of the four different drum kit locations set up across the front of the stage. The band, which was set up behind the drummers included keyboards, an acoustic and electric bass player, two guitars, a horn section, percussion and an 8-person choir. There were times when multiple drum kits were used simultaneously.
Two Aviom monitoring systems were used on stage, for both the artists and band, with content generated from the house 56-input Soundcraft Series 5 Monitor console with a Mackie SR-24 monitor sidecar. The system used two Aviom AN-16/i Input Modules and 17 Personal Mixers (16 A-16II and one A-16R rack-mounted Personal Mixer) while three A-16D Pro A-Net Distributors were used for digital signal routing. Other gear provided included Yamaha PM 4000 with a Yamaha GA32 sidecar, Shure mics and in-ear monitors.
“The room, which seats over 5,000 when full, has a significant rear-wall slap, delayed approximately 250ms to 500ms,” says Bob Singleton, president of Singleton Productions. “The rear wall forms a parabola, focused on the stage area. Because of the volume of this slap, it requires in-ear monitors or loud monitor wedges to drown out the slap. Percussive sounds are particularly problematic. In-ear monitors have proven to be the best solution to the rear wall slap problem.”
Singleton, audio supervisor and location audio recording engineer for the event, set up a remote recording gear in the church’s audio booth located in the rear of the hall, above the seating area. Eighty tracks of audio from the stage were recorded to a system made up of two Alesis HD24 hard disk recorders and 48-tracks of Logic, running on a laptop Mac computer. The Logic tracks were hooked up on a 2408 MOTU interface, a 24i expander and an external Magma hard disk.
In the recording booth, Singleton arranged a Mackie 8-bus 32-8 with a 24-input expander and an additional Mackie 24-8 sidecar to route the audio coming from the stage to the recording inputs and for the video mix. The 80 tracks will be used during mixdown of the concert for the DVD production.
“There’s a big difference between last year and this year as far as the monitors are concerned,” says Scottie Richardson, who controlled the band monitors. “Last year we had to manually reset the monitors from the aux sends after each guest artist performance. This year we saved the mixes at the rehearsal and simply recalled them as needed during the performance.”
“With multiple drum kits on top of a full rhythm section and choir, the need for a personal mix is vital.” says Sean McCurley who has also performed and recorded with such notables as LeAnn Rymes, George Duke, Jonathan Butler, Dwight Sills and James Ingram. “We had a fantastic audio team that set up our mixes when we took our place to perform.”
Drummers for Jesus is a world wide network of drummers and percussionists who use their drumming to spread the message of Jesus Christ. The organization was formed in Dallas, Texas in 2002 by Carlos Benson, a professional drummer himself.