Nashville, TN (October 10, 16)—Kenny Chesney is either rehearsing or on the road for six months of the year, so if his crew and band aren’t family at the start of it, they certainly are by the end—and then they come back and do it all over again the next year. Helping them all blow off steam, there’s often a community jam room set up backstage, where anyone can pick up an instrument and hang. Saving it all for posterity is a Mackie DL32R 32-Channel Rackmount Digital Mixer.
"Most people on the crew, whether they're a truck driver, bus driver, rigger, most of us are musicians," noted Jeff Kersey, Chesney's guitar tech for over six years. "We're all here because we love to play music, and this is a great family to play music with."
Backstage jams are a regular part of life on tour. "We have a lot of fun out on the road," reports drummer Sean Paddock, a 20-year veteran with Chesney. "Whenever we get a big enough dressing room, we set up our little studio space. The band and the crew love to come in and jam, so it's all-in, like a pickup basketball game."
Their backstage setup is heavy on Mackie gear, including several portable loudspeakers, subs and studio monitors. At the heart of it all is their Mackie DL32R 32-Channel Rackmount Digital Mixer. "We use the DL32R for our mixdown in the band room," said Phillip "Sidephill" Robinson, Chesney's monitor engineer for more than 16 years. "It's so great to not have to drag out a snake; you can set the DL32R up, plug in your mics, fire up the iPads and away you go."
Paddock points to the DL32R's recording capability as a standout feature for capturing ideas as inspiration strikes. "Since it has the ability to record, we can record the jams, and then come back a week later and listen to it and remember, oh yeah, that's what we did."