Hey there, Thanks for recording the audio of our next RISK! live show. Below are some notes on live sound for the show as well as guidelines and best practices for your consideration, so we can be sure that these recordings are in the best shape for use in our podcast episodes.
Before the show:
What to record:
- Main stage mic, in mono.
- Audience, ideally in stereo from two mics pointed at the audience on opposite sides of the stage, away from the house speakers. (You can sum to mono if you have limited recording tracks.) If you have additional mics and tracks to record in the space, we’re happy to have recordings from these vantages too!
We also try to get backups of each track, in case of recording failure. Kevin will have a few recorders with him, including one that can be hooked up inline with the stage mic via a y-split XLR cord, as a redundant backup.
What not to record: Voice of God mic, our own theme music, house feed such as from an iPod, etc.
Recording format: WAV or AIFF, 24-bit or higher, at 44.1kHz if possible (though 48kHz is okay). If you must record to a compressed format, AAC or MP3 at 320kbps will do.
Routing: Please be sure your recording volume will not be affected by your live sound levels; it’s important to maintain a consistent recording volume throughout the show. Record pre-fader, pre-filters, pre-effects so the sound being captured is raw.
House music: Feel free to play some fun, upbeat music in the house before the show begins (à la Talking Heads, Earth Wind & Fire, etc.) until showtime.
Announcement: Right before the show starts, we ask that someone from your venue make an announcement over a microphone. If that someone is you, it should be something like:
Good evening everyone and welcome to [VENUE NAME]. Remember, tonight’s show is being recorded for the RISK! podcast. That means that microphones are aimed at you right now! So please turn off your cellphones and other noise-making devices. Try not to drop things or kick over bottles, and please no talking while the stories are being told. And now, please welcome Kevin Allison and RISK!
Theme Song: Immediately following the announcement, play the RISK! theme song (which you can download here) over the sound system and Kevin will walk out on stage to start the show. Then fade music out once Kevin gets on the mic.
During the show:
Levels: Please be sure recording levels are neither too high (clipping) nor too low (which can bury the signal in noise floor hiss.) Levels that peak around -6db are ideal, but if you have to record in 16-bit, better to err on the hot side.
Tip! Kevin is first up on stage and is usually the loudest on the mic. This is a good time to ensure your levels are good, but please refrain from adjusting them again once he has left the stage. And when Kevin introduces storytellers by shouting their names, it’s generally okay if that goes into the red and clips on the recording.
Music: Please, do not play music in between storytellers.
After the show:
File names: Once the show is over and you’re ready to send us the files, please name them with this template:
For the “MIC” part, list STAGE, AUD (for audience), or ZOOM (for a Zoom or other portable recorder.)
If need be, you can add a number or -L or -R afterwards to distinguish between different files of the same type or the left/right channels of a stereo recording.
And if you happen to have a file broken into multiple parts, just add -pt1, -pt2, etc. after the City.
(Left side of an audience mic recording)
(Right side of the same audience mic recording)
(The main stage mic)
(Recording from a 2nd portable recorder)
(part 2 of 2, Stage + audience mic combined)
Uploading files: Please upload your files to the Google Drive folder we will set up for you. If you haven’t received a link to this, please ask John LaSala to do so for you.
If it’s about audio stuff, please ask John LaSala: firstname.lastname@example.org
If it’s about anything else, ask Kevin or JC: email@example.com