Billy Flores with his Yamaha PM5D console on Rock The Bells.New York (September 12, 2008)–Launched in 2003, the Rock the Bells festival is a yearly celebration of hip-hop and urban culture. This year, the festival took place in 20 different venues across the U.S. featuring performances by Nas, Mos Def, De La Soul, Method Man, A Tribe Called Quest and more, with special guest performances by Black Eyed Peas in Los Angeles and Jay-Z in New York. The tour used two Yamaha PM5D digital audio consoles.
“We have about 12 headlining acts on the same stage during the festival, so it is paramount for me to be able to store all the acts and pull them up on the fly,” said Billy Flores, sound crew chief and front of house engineer. With the exception of A Tribe Called Quest, which used a PM5000, all acts were mixed on PM5Ds at front of house and monitors.
“Without the PM5D, mixing the shows would not be nearly the ultimate experience it has been for me this summer,” added Flores. “Since we are doing the tour ‘festival-style,’ no one soundchecks and most of the artists don’t even arrive on site until 1:00 pm or so. The grounds open up at 11:00 am to about 10-15 thousand concertgoers, so with the settings stored on a 5D card, I’m up and running in no time.”
Flores first began using a PM5D with Black Eyed Peas back in 2004. “It’s so easy to navigate around this desk because the layout is user friendly, and at the touch of a button you can select effects, compression, noise gates, dynamics, whatever,” noted Flores. “With the latest 5D version, you have an expanded effects library to play with as well as newly added dynamics.”
Yamaha Commercial Audio Systems