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May 25, 2004

Even a blind man can see where I'm coming from

Last night I played a venue that I had not worked since 1985. Interestingly some of the "then" regulars are the "now" regulars. Nothing else has changed either.

It is a tough setup. The space is shaped like a Y. The playing position is at the bottom of the vee part, looking toward the front door which is at the bottom of the leg of the Y. (Does that make sense?)

There is a house system consisting of 4 Peavey 12" two ways. Each one is ceiling hung and pointed in a different direction. When that system is in use, every step provides a different perspective of the sound.

At a point about 12 feet inside the door (the depth of two booths) there is one speaker that is pointed back to the stage area, so when you enter and walk past that speaker the sound is behind you.

Of course I didn't use the house system. I used a double bass L1 system.

About an hour before closing a trio walked in, one of them blind, with a cane and recieving assistance from his lady friend, as they negotiated their way through folks milling about the bar.

The blind gentleman is not only a regular, but also owns and operates a recording studio near here that has developed a very good reputation in the Bluegrass world.

From the time he entered the door he never took his attention from me, partly because he didn't expect to hear someone other than the regular entertainment, partly because he was trying to determine where he had heard that voice before, (only one time in his studio about 2 years ago)and partly because he could "see" where I was coming from.

Oldghm
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Oct 13, 2003

Re: Even a blind man can see where I'm coming from

This is a wonderful post.

Ken
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Apr 12, 2004

Re: Even a blind man can see where I'm coming from

quote:
It is a tough setup. The space is shaped like a Y. The playing position is at the bottom of the vee part, looking toward the front door which is at the bottom of the leg of the Y. (Does that make sense?)


Oldghm,

That is awesome, the L1 brings "sight" to the blind.

I'm curious, any feedback on the sound from the 2 "arms" of the "Y" (which were behind and slightly diagonal from the L1)? I'm guessing some of the crowd must have been behind the primary cylindrical wave.

Jeff
www.theunmentionables.com
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Oct 21, 2004

Re: Even a blind man can see where I'm coming from

I am now pictureing a White L1 with red tip....
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May 25, 2004

Re: Even a blind man can see where I'm coming from

Greetings from West Yellowstone. I'm rejuvenating in the Great Rocky Mtn. trout streams of Colorado, Wyoming, and Montana.

One side of the Y is a smal game room, people in there generally arn't listening. The other side is occupied by listeners. All feedback was positive.

The regular has played one gig with me and the L1 system, and we plan to work together in this location at some point in the future.

There is no doubt in my mind that it works much better than the 4 Peaveys.

Oldghm
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Re: Even a blind man can see where I'm coming from

Most Awesome!
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May 11, 2020

Re: Even a blind man can see where I'm coming from

Oldghm,

This thread, thinking about perception, and things I take for granted, and then

quote:
Greetings from West Yellowstone. I'm rejuvenating in the Great Rocky Mtn. trout streams of Colorado, Wyoming, and Montana.


Just the right kind of pause in the din of daily life.

Thanks!
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Oct 13, 2003

Re: Even a blind man can see where I'm coming from

Oldghm,

I hope you're having a great time. I love fresh trout cooked on a campfire.

It struck me in thinking more about your wonderful story that we tend to think of "clarity" as something that comes from the tone of a signal. And of course that's true. A voice or instrument can sound muddy if you knock out the high frequencies for example.

But for completeness, "clarity" comes from the spectral domain, the time domain (e.g. too much reverberation or an echo can destroy clarity) AND the spatial domain.

This last one -- the spatial domain -- seems to me the one that so often gets left out of our thinking, and it's the one you site (no pun intended) in your story.

When instruments and voices arrive from different directions (that's the spatial part) they sound more clear. This is a dimension left relatively unexplored when compared to the other two.

(I suppose if we really wanted, we could add the last dimension of dynamics: after all, if a sound sinks into the noise, it becomes less clear, and if it gets to intense, our ability to hear becomes diminished by distortion in our auditory system.)

Probably the most obscure (but still signicicant) contributor to clarity is something that a blind person can not use, and that is to look at what you're listening to. An obvious example is lip reading by those that have serious hearing loss or deafness. But normal hearing individuals use this sense integration between sight and sound to hear better.

I love this stuff.

Ken Jacob
Chief Engineer
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Oct 13, 2003

Re: Even a blind man can see where I'm coming from

"I see said the blind man who couldn't talk to the deaf dog in the corner of a round room."

- One of my children.
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Jul 9, 2004

Re: Even a blind man can see where I'm coming from

quote:
"I see said the blind man who couldn't talk to the deaf dog in the corner of a round room."


. . .as he picked up his hammer and saw.