Pianos, Open Mics and Stuff

Pianos, Open Mics and Stuff

I’ve been doing a fair bit of buying and selling recently and drowning in the world of digital pianos! I thought it was about time to upgrade some equipment in my home studio for my demos such as studio monitors, microphone and go on the quest for a great stage piano.

I’ve found out that there are no perfect solutions! Many Professionals play Nords out and about, they seem to be one of the lightest weighted, serious 88 keys out there at 18kgs (still heavy!), but for some reason for now I just don’t warm to them…perhaps it’s cause they are too shiny and cool. My plan was to sell what I had and just have one good and versatile keyboard I’d keep at home and bring out to gigs occasionally too. What actually happened was I fell in love with a great Yamaha Stage Piano CP5, bought it second hand and well couldn’t really lift it out of my car when I got home!! I was going to sell it again, but it’s just too nice to play and sounds utterly amazing. I literally can’t stop playing it. However at 25kg, given the shape and size until the days (if ever!) I have a Roadie, it’s gonna stay put!

My ultra light M-Audio is super for bringing out and about, but now the focus will be more on the Piano in the new recordings to come it doesn’t quite cut it live as need something with more presence to cut through the mix, but great for just bashing out a few chords in a band as a component.

So I have acquired a second keyboard for taking out and about when necessary as I have worked out that I need something less that 15kg ideally, given the awkward shape of keyboards. Settled with another Yamaha, bit of an upgrade on what I had at home previously, and at about 12kg so it’s do-able for a weak woman! (Muscle-wise ahem ahem ahem!).

Open mics I’ve been doing recently have been going well. It’s always daunting going back out to open mics when the last gigs you did were with a band where you have like a tiny bit of camouflage, it’s doubly daunting when you are playing songs that you have never played in public before. Saying all that though I think it’s really necessary for me to try out new tunes in their acoustic format, as if folk can like and appreciate them in their bare bones, raw state along with feedback and response, you can get a clearer idea of what works and how you will go with the production.

One thing I have noticed markedly, is that there a some songs now that just NEED to be acoustic and bare. That’s a nugget I live by really in terms of music and production, but it’s sometimes hard to put into practice when you are so involved and lost in your own music – you really need to do what’s best for the song – recording, live, whenever.

I could write loads more, but I’ll save that for another day 🙂

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