Currently in the midst of The Band Perry’s first world tour, “We Are Pioneers,” front of house engineer Jon Garber is utilizing a wide range of tools from Radial Engineering.
The Band Perry has been on a huge popularly surge, with Garber, who joined the band after nine years with Rascal Flatts, touring for more than 170 shows a year.
“The main challenge I have right now is that we’re on a different PA every night, so making it consistent night after night is what I strive for,” he states. “For me, new gear is something I really take my time to research. I’m of the mindframe that if it isn’t broke, don’t change it. But I know there’s new gear out that can make a day easier; for instance Radial gear, which we use a lot on this tour.”
Specifically, Garber and The Band Perry sound team deploy Radial J48 direct boxes, Reamp JCRs, JDI Duplex stereo DIs on keyboards, JDX DIs on electric guitars and ProD8 rack-mount DIs with Pro Tools recording rig. “The Radial J48 is by far, the best-sounding DI box out there,” he says. “It has super-low harmonic distortion and produces a lot more clean headroom. This is particularly important when you plug in a high-gain instrument.
“We also use the Radial Reamp JCR in a really cool way,” he continues. “We take the output from the wireless systems into the stage amps and then into Petersen tuners so that the artists can check their tuning at all times. The signal sounds as if you’re connected to a 15-foot cable. And because of the JCR isolation transformers, we can lift the ground and eliminate all of the hum and buzz problems that caused havoc in the past.”
One Radial JPC (stereo PC DI box) is utilized for several functions: “Getting a line-level signal for playback is the most important. Then in turn, if my audio interface goes down it’s a quick back up. One other place I use it is when artists want to play a song from their iPhone—I can quickly make that happen.”
Garber recently received word that even more dates are being added to The Band Perry’s schedule this year—Blake Shelton has invited the band to join him on more than 20 dates for the 2014 leg of his own “Ten Times Crazier” tour.
“The Band Perry are perfectionists, which I love,” he concludes. “They’re always trying new ways to give the crowd the best possible show. The best part of touring is working so hard during the setup and then seeing the people cheer and sing every song they sing.”