Soundman: the incredible invisible job.

This post goes out to all those who smiled knowingly when reading the title of this post.
There are very few jobs like it, where doing your job well means you go unnoticed, and yet you can make or break a service with a few quick actions.

I’ve been involved in church sound for as long as I can remember, even as a kid in children’s church I often hung out in the little sound booth.
But I think it was about 8 years ago when I got my real start, my family moved to Wheaton and we started helping out in this old church with a small faithful attendance.
Over the years I slowly learned more and more, started to develop a ear for problems, and eventually learned how to fix them. I’ve found this is a very continual thing, I’m learning new things all the time(the latest being the beauty of compressors).
And what’s very cool is now with technology like the iPhone you can have access to tools like a real time analyzer, that before was limited to sound departments with big budgets.
Which is amazing seeing a real time picture of what frequencies are louder than others.

But here’s something interesting, great tools don’t equal great sound, nothing but the listening ears of a experienced sound man can hear the ring in the system and fix the problem long before it even gets close to feeding back, and yet your average church is full of these problems.
I don’t really have a answer to solve this problem, this is mostly just a observation.

Back to my title I know I said it’s pretty much a invisible job when does right, which it is, here’s where the incredible comes in, it’s in that moment when the song is in full swing and the people are entering in, you feel the moment happening and you ride the right faders, EQs, and settings, swelling in key instruments and tones at the right time, the room is just full of that sweet beautiful sound of a great moment in a good mix, and the intensity of the peoples expression of worship rises up with it. And you just can’t help but smile and think, I’m so glad I am doing this right here and right now.

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