Lexicon, dbx and JBL enable front of house engineer, Rob McWhorter, to stay in step with the dancer and electronic music star
NORTHRIDGE, Calif.—Virtuoso electronic violinist, YouTube phenomenon and New York Times Best Selling author, Lindsey Stirling recently commenced her latest North American tour with Lexicon, dbx and JBL Professional audio brands bolstering her inimitable sound and elaborate production style.
During her live show, Stirling twists and twirls alongside four dancers while switching between four violins. “The fact that Lindsey can play as stably as she does while she’s moving is amazing, but working on Lindsey’s violins can still be complicated,” said Rob McWhorter, front of house engineer for Stirling. “A violin is an acoustically based instrument but, with the band’s EDM, dubstep, electronic and pop dance style influences, we have a lot of volume. We can’t keep a live mic in check with Lindsey and instead need to run all of her violins direct.”
“Always having a direct signal means there’s a lot you need to do to make the sound as big and natural as possible,” McWhorter said. “ One of the key elements of Lindsey’s violin sound is reverb, and on this tour, I have a pair of Lexicon PCM 96s to help give me the biggest, most spacious and ambient reverb as possible, so I can run them very wet and still sound natural.” McWhorter further deploys the Lexicon PCM 96s for Sterling’s vocals and the drum kit.
Rounding out Stirling’s violin sound, McWhorter uses two dbx 676 Tube Microphone Preamp Channel Strips. “I have slightly different settings for each violin—various combinations of reverb, EQ, compression and different pre-amps—and two of the four instruments rely on dbx processing,” he said.
Having worked with Stirling since her debut tour four years ago, McWhorter also serves as her production manager and uses JBL speakers for onstage monitoring. “All of our monitors are JBL, and we’ve been using them since day one. In the four years that we’ve had them, I’ve never had to replace a driver. We use a drum sub, wedges at the keyboard position and side fills for the dancers. That way, if any of their IEMs go out, I know they’ll still be able to hear the mix. The JBLs are solid and never let me down.”
Stirling catapulted into the limelight as an acclaimed violinist and performer with her self-released and produced music videos on YouTube, which have garnered more than 1.4 billion views and more than 8 million subscribers. With her unique blend of Celtic folk, classical, dubstep and dance, her debut and sophomore releases have both topped the Billboard Album charts and, to date, her tours have sold more than 500,000 headline tickets worldwide. Lindsey’s highly anticipated third studio album, “Brave Enough,” will be released on August 19 through her own imprint, Lindseystomp Records.