Yes, that’s me in the blue pants. A friend and I built the large 2x15” enclosures to my left. Originally they had two Radio Shack Musical Instrument 15” speakers installed. I found 2 Eminence 15” speakers at a music store at the mall and moved the RS speakers to some smaller wooden boxes that I built to fit in my small car. The large boxes sounded pretty good, accidentally. The Bose 801s belonged to a friend. The band was Admit 3. We were a Rush cover band. Pictured is Robert Mooty to my right.
Audio Centron was a sound equipment line built by the same people that made Ampeg and Crate. This is the CE34 and CS36S speakers and the Eclipse 16 channel mixer. Everything was made in St. Louis.
The Yamaha MC32/12. Our first large mixer and I never really cared for how it sounded. The Yorkville TX8 and TX9S. These speakers were truly professional quality. The TX8 was a 3 way box with 2x15s, 1x8, and a 2” HF driver. The TX9s was a dual 18” sub.
We expanded the Yorkville TX system to include four TX8s, 4 TX9Ss, and 4 TX5M wedges. This system opened the door for a lot of new events. The TX speakers were made of Baltic Birch, included flying hardware, and were loaded with RCF and B&C drivers.
I had owned the music store (S&S Music) for almost a year when we changed our PA to the Dynacord Cobra system. We were one of the first customers to own a Cobra system in the country. It was smaller and lighter than the TX system, and the sound was a completely different animal. We added a pair of EV QRX218S subs to supplement the lows. We added a second system and later sold it. We experienced a lot of growth in our client base thanks to the Cobra system. We also bought our first touring console, the Yamaha PM-3000. It was a beast but it was very rider friendly at the time. The Cobra was a hard sell but most people were very impressed once they heard it.
This year was huge for us. We moved from the Cobra system back to a much larger Yorkville TX system. We bought an Allen & Heath ML4000 console along with a GL2400 monitor console. The TX system had 6 TX2M bi-amped wedges, 2 TX4 bi-amped sidefills, 4 TX8s and 4 TX9Ss. We added a video system, albeit limited, and we bought all new white cases. I don’t know why we got white cases because they looked pretty bad after a few weeks. We were asked to go on three month tour with a major Christian artist. My wife was pregnant with our son at the time and I didn’t want to be away during that time.
2006 was another ground breaking year for us. We bought all new lights, 8 Elation Powerspot 575ies, and 8 Elation CMY-Zoom250. We also bought 6 pieces of Penn-Elcom 12” box truss and 4 of their ground support 18’ stands. To end the shopping spree we bought the new Midas Verona 480 Tour Pack console. A few weeks later we learned that Dynacord introduced a new version of the Cobra, the Cobra 4. This system was a 4 way ground stack line array system. I knew it would sound good so I bought one. I drove to Morrilton, AR to pick it up and ended up leaving the key for the lock on my truck behind. Fortunately someone at Telex had a large enough bolt cutter to cut through the lock. They were so nice to wait with me until we got the truck door opened up, even staying after Telex closed. I brought the system back home and installed the power distros in the amp racks. Other than that the system was ready to go right out of the box, well, 21 boxes. The next day we had an event in Edmond, OK. The first time I get to hear the rig would be at this event, where 800 kids were scheduled to attend. At the time Dynacord, Midas, Klark Teknik, and ElectroVoice were all under the Telex umbrella so everything seemed to work so well together. The Cobra didn’t disappoint, at all.
2009 ushered in a lot of change. S&S Music closed its doors. The store would support the production side of things when the show season slowed down, the production supported the store when the buying season slowed down. Well Arkadelphia’s buying season dried up and the production division could no longer support the store. So I closed the doors and moved everything to Dallas, my hometown. Without any employees I needed to consider “loosing some weight.” With the prices on digital boards dropping I decided that now was a good time to sell the Verona and get something digital. The prices on the analog consoles had dropped dramatically. I didn’t want an LS9 so I went with the Personus StudioLive1642, well, two of them. The console sounded really good and was easy to learn. The ease of recording via FireWire and iPad remote control were two features that I really appreciated, also the 2 consoles and the case where less than 80 pounds. About 2 years later I took the plunge into the X-32.
After severn years with the Cobra 4 I was anxious to make a change. I found a buyer and was able to replace everything with the proceeds from that purchase. I was happy to go back to Yorkville. They had a new line of touring-grade equipment called VTC ProAudio. The speakers were designed by Danley Sound and they were true line-array enclosures. I ordered 8 tops and 4 dual 18 subs. I also ordered some GenieLifts since the speakers with the grid were nearly 500 pounds per hang. These speakers sounded different than the Cobra, but in a good way, a very good way.
Another year of change. I was traveling to a show in Edmond, OK. when I was pulled over by the OK Highway Patrol. I wasn’t speeding or anything. The officer said I needed to have a DOT number clearly displayed on my truck. He detained me for nearly an hour, inspected the truck, probably ran my drivers license too. He warned me not to get stopped in OK without a DOT number. So after the event I went home and researched what it would take to get a DOT number for my box truck. The costs were a lot more than I was prepared to fork over. In my research I also learned that my truck was close to 1000 pounds over its weight capacity fully loaded. So I was faced with the tough decision to downsize my system. So I sold the VTC system, the trusses, the Genies, the ground support stands, and the truck. I bought a pickup truck and a nice big trailer. I was looking forward to driving a pickup truck around during my week long shows rather than a box truck. I researched what type of smaller PA I could get by with, and looked into replacing all the truss and lights with something lighter. So I got some smaller ground support stands, I got some smaller truss, I got some LED lights and movers, and I went with the Yorkville PSA1 line array system. I got 8 of their PSA1 line array tops (also designed by Danley Sound Labs) and 4 PSA2S dual 15” subs. I didn’t care for the subs so I replaced them with a pair of Yorkville ES21P powered subs. I sold the X32 and for an M32. There was a noticeable difference between the two consoles.
Keeping with the tradition, 2018 witnessed its share of change. A used Cobra system had become available and I had so many good memories from the last Cobra system I owned I thought I should take advantage of getting another. I sold the PSA system and bought the Cobra system. Right away I was disappointed. I listened to it before I bought it but I wasn’t able to hear it in a real world situation. So the first event I used it for was a youth event with about 150 kids. The system sounded old, like it was worn out. After taking everything apart I discovered that one of the 15s was completely blown. I fixed the 15 and supplemented the rig with four TurboSound horn loaded subs. This helped a lot. I replaced the amps with brand new Dynacord amps, fixed the blown speaker, and removed all of the foam behind the grills. The system sounded a lot better. It was nice to have something that was so easy to set up.
This year I sold the M32 and got a Midas Pro2 and DL251 i/o. This console was amazing. Yorkville also introduced their new Danley designed Synergy System. I sold the Cobra system and ordered 4 Synergy tops and 4 Synergy subs. I was slightly disappointed with the system. I’ve never heard anything louder but the horizontal coverage of the higher frequencies were a little limited. The rep let me try out another set of tops and subs and that did the trick. The Synergy System was so clear, so loud, and extremely heavy. I’m now up to the weight limit on my trailer. I added a B system consisting of 4 Yorkville PSA1s, 2 Yorkville PS18S, and 4 Yorkville PS12Ps. I can now do large or small shows.
Finally, in 2019 Behringer released the Wing. I studied the console closely and determined that it would do everything that my Pro2 would do (with a few exceptions). For the price I could sell the Pro2 for I could easily buy a Wing, a Midas DL32, and still have some good money left over. So I did. I am so impressed with the Wing. I did have to return it to Behringer to have the screen replaced. They had it back to me within 2 weeks and its worked flawlessly ever since.
This year we decided to move over to the Presonus StudioLive 64S. I have always liked Presonus products and this mixer has impressed me. It has been very easy to learn, it is well thought out, and it even came with an owners manual!