What does this mean, “Mixing Yourself?” It’s very simple. Several weeks ago we had a couple of gigs in a really small Theater in Nigra Falls. It’s a beautiful theater that maybe seats 1000, all the chairs are padded and it’s really tight sounding, like a recording studio, no slap back whatsoever, ie. an arena.
Anyhow, Ricky Mueller, our front of house genius said, “Hey, your snare is killing me in Reba’s mic, can you tone it down just a touch?” I said “sure! anything else hurting you?” “Nope, just the snare, everything else is perfect.”
So 4 way independence allow you to play the snare softer, while keeping the other instruments playing at the same volume. The same goes with the cymbals and hat, which are notoriously loud.
These day, hardly anyone uses monitor wedges anymore. Almost everyone uses either headphones or in ear monitors. One of the side effects of in ear monitors is it blocks out the high end frequencies of the drums you are sitting behind. A side effect of this is I see a lot of drummers absolutely creaming the cymbals, I mean beating them like they owed you money.
Don’t do this! A little bit of cymbals goes a long way. If you want to see how to play cymbals live, check out a session cat playing live like Steve Gadd or John Robinson. They play them appropriately to the song. It really is fun to bash, I love to do it, but it’s not always appropriate.