Hey guys , we have transitioned recently from a wedding / corp band 3 piece with midi backing tracks , to a full five piece with drums , bass, two guitarists and a singer who plays acoustic, we do country rock and blues.
I am finding it hard to used the drum volume though at practice.
We have a small room, and when we leave my ears ring...
tips ? ideas ?
Stands for the guitar amps so they are at ear level.?
At the moment all I hear are drums and guitars , the vocals also get lost.
You should be able to have a normal (non-hollerin') conversation with any of the band members, while playing a tune, in your practice space.
There is no reason to have the volume up so high that your ears ring after practice. Placing any speakers at ear level will only make the problem worse because the speakers are closer to your ears.
Volume discipline is a real problem for many players. It often starts out with things in control, and then people start turning up, the drummer starts hitting harder, etc.
You need to figure out what the root cause is. Does the bassist have trouble hearing themself because the drummer is hitting too hard? Or does the bassist play too loudly, forcing the drummer to hit harder? Does the guitarist play too loud causing the vocalist to crank up the PA so they can stay on pitch? Every tweak upward of a volume control causes the other players to tweak their own volume upward. It's a graveyard spiral into deafness. If you cannot get this under control, playing music is Not Fun.
The best sound I've ever gotten in a practice space is with the PA for vocals coming from floor wedges and the guitar amps turned backwards to face the wall. In a small room, two wedges in the corners of the room (aimed at a 45 toward the center of the ceiling) are more than adequate. The bassist and the drummer are critical: they have to play with restraint because they both occupy the same sonic space. Tf they get a bit too loud, guitars/keys/vocals get lost really fast...forcing those players to volume creep.
One thing you can do to hear yourself better is to turn the bass down on your guitar amp. That prevents dumping even more lows into the room to compete with the bass and drums and helps keep the bass and drums in check. The drummer should be able to play anything at a quiet volume.
And yes--ear plugs are a must, even when everyone is acting like a grownup and playing at a reasonable (low) volume level.
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Well band prac was much better now, we placed our combos on chairs ... I stood away form mine and the other guitar player and his right next to him, we both turned down... and we could hear the vocals.. and no ringing ears...
the secret is obv not standing right in front of or sitting on combos....
have not played with a drummer for years so this is all new to me