MORE

How to Piss Off the Sound Guy in Five Easy Steps

You'll be seeing this in no time!
You'll be seeing this in no time!
flicker/mil8

Recently we profiled some of the best live sound engineers in Los Angeles. These dudes, with their deft hands and sharp ears, make concerts a joy to take in.

Seven of the Best Live Sound Engineers in L.A.

If you're a musician, they hold your fate in their hands. As such, it might be a good idea not to piss them off. Here's what will accomplish that:

How to Piss Off the Sound Guy in Five Easy Steps
Otto Yomomotto

1. Show up late

Arriving on time is a big way to get the sound guy in your corner. "It's a pain in the ass waiting around for bands so that we can stay on schedule," says Shawn London, a sound engineer for a quarter of a century at spots like The El Rey, The Key Club and The Roxy. "The singer is always the last one to show up," he says, adding: "especially if it's a solo artist."

See also: If Your Band Wants to Sound Good You Must Give the Sound Guy $20

How to Piss Off the Sound Guy in Five Easy Steps
Chris Costes

2. Try to run the sound board yourself

We get it: You have the best of intentions. But remember, those pave the road to hell. London notes that it's pretty common for bands to come in with input lists. "It becomes a pain in the ass when it's all wrong or they want a bunch of changes once they get to the venue," he says. The lesson here? Get out of the way and let the sound guy do his job.

 

How to Piss Off the Sound Guy in Five Easy Steps
BiblioArchives / Library Archives

3. Dick around

When you get on stage for sound check, have your instruments in hand, your amp set up, and your guitar tuned. Remember, you're not at a practice in your drummer's garage, so don't be dicking around. Believe it or not, live gigs happen on a tight schedule.

How to Piss Off the Sound Guy in Five Easy Steps
Marcin Wichary

4. Don't tip

Yeah, you read right. Not everyone knows this, so you could maybe be forgiven, but, long story short, if you want to sound good you need to tip. Ever heard of "tipping out" at restaurants? Basically, if someone else makes it possible for you to do your job, you owe them a cut of whatever you earn. Even if all you get is drink tickets, pay one of them forward. Otherwise, a crisp $20 bill will work just fine.

 

How to Piss Off the Sound Guy in Five Easy Steps
Gregg O'Connell

5. Overstay your welcome

True story: If you're given a half hour set time, no one wants to hear you for 31 minutes. And this is true of the sound guy more than just about anyone else. Imagine you're back folding t-shirts at the mall. A customer lingers ten minutes after close, poking around. That's the longest ten minutes of your life, right? So wrap it up, kids.

Seven of the Best Live Sound Engineers in L.A.

Like us on Facebook at LAWeeklyMusic.

The 20 Worst Hipster Bands

Top 20 Musicians of All Time, In Any Genre

Best XXX Activities in L.A.

Top 10 Awkward Coachella Dance Move GIFs

Don't forget to check our constantly-updated Los Angeles Concert Calendar

Newsletters

All-access pass to top stories, events and offers around town.

Sign Up >

No Thanks!

Remind Me Later >