With offices in Orlando, Las Vegas and Phoenix, LMG Inc is a sound rental company that supplies equipment to live productions throughout the North American continent. This year, for the first time, the company is providing audio for Canadian pop rocker Avril Lavigne and they have geared up for the live dates by purchasing two DiGiCo D5 consoles.
The tour is to promote Lavigne’s new album, The Best Damn Thing, and sees promotional dates intermingled with summer festival appearances. The latter confirmed so far include festivals in Ireland, Switzerland, Turkey and Japan.
This will be Jim Yakabuski’s third tour mixing FoH for Lavigne. For the first two he was working freelance, but Jim is now employed by LMG. He explains the company’s decision to purchase the D5s. “We used D5s on FoH and monitors for the last tour and we had great results,” he says. “They had an impeccable performance record, but monitor engineer Matt Peskie and I also love the small footprint and the amount of inputs, outputs and processing that’s available in a console of this size.
“We really like the fact that you can get 112 inputs into a console that is so small, which allows us to run the Avril show and the opening act from the same mixer. The only outboard gear needed is any specialised processing the specific engineers might desire. The onboard gates and comps are very nice and I intend to dig deeper into the effects portion of the console this tour to see how much I can do within the snapshots”.
Indeed, so happy is Jim with the facilities offered by the D5 that, when it came to specifying a desk for the upcoming tour dates, he didn’t really consider any alternatives. “Compared to DiGiCo, the other choices of digital consoles are either too large, too expensive or as yet untested for the long haul,” he says. “I had such great results last time around and I really love the sound of the D5, so I didn’t seriously consider using anything else”.
Jim is also aware that DiGiCo’s technical backup is second to none, the company’s technical support team offering high quality assistance as they were configuring the original, rented, pair of D5 consoles for the previous Avril Lavigne tour. “The technical support team is extremely responsive to calls and emails with any problems or questions you might have out on the road. It is a very personal connection,” says Jim.
Another key consideration of the purchase of twin D5s is the sheer versatility – and therefore longevity – of the console. Purchasing one, let alone two, DiGiCo consoles is a major commitment for a rental company. But Bryce Hershner, LMG Inc’s General Manager of Concert Touring / Audio Services is looking forward to having the D5s in the company’s rental stock once the Avril Lavigne tour has finished.
“At the end of the tour, both will be added to the rest of our digital console inventory,” he says. “And as they are so flexible, I am sure they will also quickly become the console of choice to drive any of our large corporate audio events.”
Picture caption – Jim Yakabuski (right) and Matt Peskie (left) on the Good Morning America set in New York for part of Avril’s promo tour. The D5 was used as the monitor console and for the live mix in the studio. The broadcast mix was done with the in-house console in the control room.