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Age Check for Those of Us Still Gigging and Hauling Gear


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Hi Friends,

 

Since there has been a lot of discussion concerning lightweight keyboards and amps, I am curious to see if there’s a pattern between our ages and the type of equipment we are now using to gig with. So please list your age and the equipment that you use for your typical gig. This only applies for those of us who actually have to load in and load it out our equipment and not for those who actually have roadies to do it.  
 

Comments about why you chose your rig are welcome. 

 

Age: 68

MODX7, MOJO 61, iPad, 2 - Alto 310’s

 

With the MODX and the apps on my iPad, I can recreate almost any musical instrument sound used on the hundreds of recordings that we cover.  As well as create new sounds for our original music.

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'55 and '59 B3's; Leslies 147, 122, 21H; MODX 7+; NUMA Piano X 88; Motif XS7; Mellotrons M300 and M400’s; Wurlitzer 206; Gibson G101; Vox Continental; Mojo 61; Launchkey 88 Mk III; Korg Module; B3X; Model D6; Moog Model D

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Age: 65

 

Stage rig:

Stage 4 Compact and/or CK88, depending on the gig.

EV PXM-12MP for onstage monitoring. With two keyboards (or anything additional) I’ll use my Key Largo; otherwise a simpler Radial DI works to get signal to the FOH and back to the powered cabinet. 
Working on switching out the CK88 with a Fantom-08; wanting to use the CK more in my home workspace..

'Someday, we'll look back on these days and laugh; likely a maniacal laugh from our padded cells, but a laugh nonetheless' - Mr. Boffo.

 

We need a barfing cat emoticon!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Age: 79

Nord 5D, JBL Eon One Compact, QSR K8, speaker stands, keyboard stand, tall stool, tenor sax

These are only my opinions, not supported by any actual knowledge, experience, or expertise.
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I'll be 54 in August.

MOXF6 over FA-07 plus an iPad controlled by the MOXF

Pedal board below (with 6-ch mixer, Radial D2, two Yamaha FC-5s and an FC-7, plus power strip). 

IEMs

Quik-Lok Monolith keyboard stand with 2nd tier

and I bring everything for the PA except the subs. oh, and my guitar.

 

I chose these two boards for their weight, price (both bought used in mint condition), and versatility. I get all the sounds I need (with the B3 on ipad), and with one button press on the yamaha, everything loads automatically. Our band goes song-to-song with no stopping, so that was essential.

 

I really like the Monolith, but it's pretty heavy and clunky to transport. Maybe someday I'll upgrade to a K&M but I can't justify the price at the moment.

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Just turned 60.  Nord Stage 73 & Mainstage for 95% of my gigs.

I don't haul as much gear as I used too. My personal rig isn't that much to carry. But a couple times a year I have to take a PA out and that can be a heavy lift.

I was a hard core crossfitter for about 10 years and actually didn't mind the lifting. It's more the time and pressure of setting up a complex rig or PA that bothers me more than the weight.

Recently I've had some injuries and other health issues that have kept me out of the gym and at my age I've found it's difficult to get back started, but I'm trying to make it a priority to keep my weight down and not let my shoulders get weak.

I've found that using 73 or 76 key boards helps more with the size being cut down than the weight.  An 88 key board with a side panel for  pitch/mod wheels is just to big to maneuver and place at any weight for me.

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You want me to start this song too slow or too fast?

 

Forte7, Nord Stage 3, XK3c, OB-6, Arturia Collection, Mainstage, MotionSound KBR3D. A bunch of MusicMan Guitars, Line6 stuff

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Age: 75

 

Mostly perform with just a Korg Nautilus 73, although I do have a Kawai MP6 I can take to the job if it's piano only. Amps are CPS for band jobs or MotionSound krp8s for solo or low volume jobs. In one band I go through the PA and just use in-ears but help with loading of the PA, which counts as hauling in my book. With the Nautilus I'm able to do a one keyboard rig, but before getting that I was hauling both the Kawai and an SKPro.

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I’ve decided I’m 27.  

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  • Haha 5

"It doesn't have to be difficult to be cool" - Mitch Towne

 

"A great musician can bring tears to your eyes!!!

So can a auto Mechanic." - Stokes Hunt

 

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54 next month

 

One or two of the following:

VR09, Numa Compact 2X, MODX7

 

One or two or three of the following:

JBL PRX615, QSC K12, Vox Mini Go 50

 

 

Due to eminent rain at last night's outside gig, the least expensive bits were choice: Numa Compact 2X direct into the little Vox Mini Go 50. Not the most Hi Fi sound, but shocked and amazed how punchy and nuanced that featherweight rig is and easily held its own with a six piece classic rock band. Didn’t even have to mic it into the PA. Sprinkles right as we started first set…had to delay for about an hour with a small tarp and a couple of hefty trash bags, but ended up having one of the best times at a gig in a long while.

 

Gotta do it again tonight with even stronger chance of rain. Still deciding between the VR09 and the Numa, but the Vox will definitely be the choice amp for the potential soggy event.

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When  I was in my early 50's i was toting a 72 pound stage piano, a 37 pound synth and an 85 pound leslie. Now, two keyboards combined are 49 pounds and the leslie has been reduced to 2 pounds (sim). Is the shift age-related?  Hell yeah.

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57 Hammond B3; 69 Hammond L100P; 68 Leslie 122; Kurzweil Forte7 & PC3; M-Audio Code 61; Voce V5+; Neo Vent; EV ELX112P; GSI Gemini & Burn

Delaware Dave

Exit93band

 

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I sometimes still take a 48 lb digital piano to gigs, thinking "it'll be worth it." It's not worth it. 

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  • Haha 4

Gigging: Crumar Mojo 61, Hammond SKPro

Home: Vintage Vibe 64

 

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Most gigs these days I use a Nord Stage 3 Compact and 1980 Fender Stratocaster. Nord into the PA and guitar into a Vox AC15. A few upcoming gigs will require supplementing the Nord with a Gibson G101 and Fender Rhodes Piano Bass. I am 72.

Gibson G101, Fender Rhodes Piano Bass, Vox Continental, RMI Electra-Piano and Harpsichord 300A, Hammond M102A, Hohner Combo Pianet, OB8, Matrix 12, Jupiter 6, Prophet 5 rev. 2, Pro-One, CS70M, CP35, PX-5S, WK-3800, Stage 3 Compact

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Age: 65

 

I use a Nord Stage 4 Compact with a Nord Piano 5 76 as a midi controller underneath.   I generally use IEMs or headphones to monitor.  A light Spider Pro stand, a few pedals, and that's basically it.   I find both boards very easy to handle, zero complaints.

 

One interesting aspect is that I rarely play a gig past 9pm or maybe 10  because that's when the audience goes home.  Being home in bed by 11pm makes a big difference the next morning.  A light rig does help though.

 

 

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Want to make your band better?  Check out "A Guide To Starting (Or Improving!) Your Own Local Band"

 

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Two posts in as many days...this must be some kind of record for me.

Age: 66

NS376 

2 EV SXA360s

Roc n Soc throne

Rack case w XR18, router & cabling

Pedal case

Case for mic, iPad, cords, etc

Folding stand for rack case

Mic stand

 

will be unpacking/packing this for the 3rd day in a row...starting out to be a very busy summer.  Went from a Kronos to the NS3 somewhat for the weight consideration.  Wish the EV's had better handles.  We all help to load and unload each other's gear, but that multiplies everybody's schlepp.  I'll be doing it till I no longer can...hope that's not anytime soon. 

  

IMG_1342.JPG

"May you stay...forever young."

 

 

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Im 65 in a few days and am on a reducing keyboard weight fad due to having damaged lungs from Sarcoidosis 25 years ago.

 

My lungs are covered in scar tissue from 25 years ago (xrays look much like those shown of current demic patients) so can not absorb oxygen well.

 

Presently 30% capacity. I am also at risk of coughling fits due mostly to cold weather or hot weather so have to plan how to avoid that. I run out of breath doing normal things on my feet let alone with carrying gear which is breath taking literally Hah.

 

I can still sing strong but not fast songs and can play if seated. New duo partner has offered to help lug but we havent gigged yet so am wanting to keep it lightweight gear.

 

Lugging is terribly hard so Im experimentng with a Numa Compact 2x at 7kg. All up in bag filled wth pedal, leads, mic etc  11kg with tablet probably 11.5 kg. I find its easier to lug than my Casio PX330 a 11.5kg board (probably around 15 to 16kg in bag.) Love the Casio feel and feel right at home playing it.

 

The difference carrying the Numa Cocal to car is enough to make the switch from hammer action to semi weighted acceptable. Although i dont doubt for piano orientated gigs ill continue using the casio with help lugging.

 

Very lightweight 3kg Stays keyboard stand

 

If i give up trying to gig I give up trying to keep going. Sure I have lots of other hobbies to fill in time but Exercise is best for damaged lungs. And I found singing in bands has helped my lungs but the lugging is scary. If i dont have band to practise singing for I get lazy as I dont enjoy singing to myself. So i keep going where others would not.

 

Numa Cocal 2x at 7kg in bag with all leads, mic, pedal etc 15kg

or Casio PX330 at 11.5kg in bag with etc around 16kg

Stays 2 tier Keyboard stand at 3kg

 

Amp usually go thru PA or have EV ZXA1 but painfuly hard to carry with built in handle so goes in a bag adding weight.

 

For band work have Hardkt keyboard amp. Very good but too heavy for duo work.  

 

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Age: 72 (but don't look it)

 

Solo rig:
Motif XF6 in SKB case
Some lightweight 61-key controller
X-stand with 2nd tier
2x ZxA1 speakers
50 lb Stand bag with 2x speaker stands, Gibraltar drum stool, other misc stands
Whatever pedals
Mixer
Convertible PC in laptop configuration
Alto sax and flute

 

Tribute band rig:
Motif XF6 in SKB case
Some lightweight 61-key and 37-key controllers
DTX Multi-12 electronic drum pad
ELX12P monitor speaker
Convertible PC in tablet configuration
Monster Gibraltar stand to hold it all
Pedalboard (includes mixer for keyboards and receiver for headset mic)
Flute

 

-- Jimbo

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65, SK-1, original Vent, Roc n Sock throne, JDL stereo DI, MS kp500 when needed, stand, small gig bag. Roller Kart, lightest rig I have.

 

Mojo 61 Vent 2, etc...

 

MAG P2 organ Trek uc1a into 145 when the load in/out allows... no complaints moving the gear, just go easy/smart. I have no qualms asking for help when I need it. 

 

Joe

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61.   Always leveraged Archimedes and other tools and Dr. restrictions to move equipment. 

J  a  z  z   P i a n o 8 8

--

Yamaha C7D

Montage M8x | CP300 | CP4 | SK1-73 | OB6 | Seven

K8.2 | 3300 | CPSv.3

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I'm 66. I gig with a MAG C2 (inbuilt Mini Vent) and a Kurzweil SP4-7 through a Yamaha MX10 mixer into an RCF ART715 powered speaker.

 

I chose the MAG because (apart from the even smaller and lighter C1 single-manual version) it's the closest thing I've found to the sound and feel of a Hammond B3 and Leslie without the bulk and weight. 

 

I chose the Kurzweil because it has all the other sounds I need (piano. Rhodes, Wurli, Clavi, strings, horns, synth, etc.) and a 76-key semi-weighted keyboard. I've also downloaded extra sounds from the PC3le library.

https://ksetlist.com/community/ksetlist-com-compilations-volumes/for-sp4-users-pc3le-programs-one-per-file/

 

Everything has its own heavy-duty padded gig bag, cables and pedals go in a backpack, and it all fits in the back seat and boot/trunk of my car along with a folding Quik Lok QL742 2-tier X-stand and a folding padded X-seat.

https://www.quiklok.com/product/ql-742-pro-series-keyboard-stand/

 

The speaker bag has wheels built in; and if it's not far from the car park to the stage, then I just carry the keyboards one in each hand (15+11 kg / 33+24 lb), or if the load-in is a long trek, then I put them both on a folding handtruck with a couple of luggage straps.

https://www.teamsystems.net.au/ruxxac-cart-xl-trolley

 

MAGC2KurzweilSP4-7small.thumb.jpg.d9627697a3f20c367188ef5accaa8262.jpg

 

Keyboardbags3small.thumb.jpg.377218abe97d3185fab39d2f402d4d60.jpg

 

 

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I'll be 71 in 9 days.

 

 When an acoustic piano of unplayable quality is there, or no piano at all, I bring a keyboard and my own sound.

I alternate between my Yamaha CP88 & P515, depending on the schlep, my mood, the players on the gig and the overall musical vibe I anticipate.

 

I still always run stereo (one of a dying breed among my peers) and bring my RCF TT08-A IIs and JMK Audio JM-110 di/ pre amp. I use the Amazon 13" folding steps and occasionally the short York speaker poles. I alternate between the K&M Omega and the lightweight 18880 stands, again depending on my mood and how I'm physically feeling that day. All transported on my 42 year old Magliner Gemini Jr. dolly.  Which in itself is feeling more beastly to lift into the back of my Forester these days.  I've always worn work gloves while moving gear to protect my hands. And I do go slower these days.

 

The individual weight of each piece doesn't bother me. But all the plugging in of the cables- a pair of instrument, xlrs & ac for each of the speakers + keyboard and DI ps ac and extension box - can get old. I could eliminate the JMK piece and go direct but the sound is thinner and less detailed.

 

It is a lot of work I make for myself running stereo, plus when you add on dealing with LA traffic, but it's not like I'm doing this 3-4 nights a week like I was into my middle 60s.  I would say on the average I move gear four to five times a month. Anymore would seem like too much.

 

There are still a number of times I play the acoustic piano there. I know most of the places where it's decent and not totally brutal. Herb Albert's place, "Vibrato", has a very well cared for newer C7X. That and the C7X at Sam First (I've only played there twice) by LAX are easily the best pianos in town at a club. A couple private homes that host regular house concerts have some good ones too.

 

I'm very picky about keyboard action and piano sound. If it doesn't feel and sound right to me, it's not fun and I'd rather stay home and practice. Gigs have to be on my terms these days, no exceptions, otherwise call someone else.

 

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https://soundcloud.com/dave-ferris

https://www.youtube.com/@daveferris2709

 

2005 NY Steinway D, Yamaha AvantGrand N3X, CP88, P515

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Age 52. Nord Stage 4 73 HA + Yamaha CK61, MacBook Air M1, MainStage, all sounds come from both keyboards, no VSTs for gigging, Yamaha FC-7… DI boxes, etc… Planning to replace the CK61 (MODX6?)

NS4 73HA, Yamaha MODX7+, Korg C1 Air, Roland TD1-DMK, Harley Benton TalkBox, Sony F-760 dynamic microphone, Scarlett 2i2 3rd gen, M-Audio Track Duo, MacBook Air M1, Logic Pro 11, Kontakt 7, Mainstage, Cubasis 3 (IOS), Korg Module (IOS),

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13 hours ago, cphollis said:

I use a Nord Stage 4 Compact with a Nord Piano 5 76 as a midi controller underneath.

OT: If playing the NS4C pianos via midi from the NP5 you miss the triple sensor advantage compared to playing the NP5 or NS4C pianos directly. How significant is the difference in feeling and response to quick retriggering of the same key?

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16 minutes ago, Jon E said:

OT: If playing the NS4C pianos via midi from the NP5 you miss the triple sensor advantage compared to playing the NP5 or NS4C pianos directly. How significant is the difference in feeling and response to quick retriggering of the same key?

There is no perceptible difference between playing a NP5 directly, and using it as a controller for the NS4C.  That's why I like the setup: it's 100% calibrated and feels quite natural to play.

Want to make your band better?  Check out "A Guide To Starting (Or Improving!) Your Own Local Band"

 

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Almost 57, ramped up weight lifting again over the past 6 months though I need to lose a bunch, er "redistribute" some.

I've found I don't like playing lightweight plastic gear like my Modx7.  The Nord Stage 3 compact (bought from cphollis!) is metal and wood and like the name says, is compact.  I have said before that I have equal issues about bulk as I do with weight, my old Moxf8 being a good example.  A Forte 7 is heavier by quite a bit, but easier to gig with than that Moxf8.

Spitballing, I probably wouldn't gig with anything over say 45 pounds, and I have no desire to ever use an unwieldy 88 weighted board on gigs again.  7 octaves weighted is plenty, and even then I'm fine with semi-weighted nice synth actions for piano playing.

Lately I've done most gigs with that NS3c but am aiming to pair it with a Fantom 6....maybe a 7, but I have a very nice molded case that will fit the 6 so that's one incentive to stick with it.  The 7 is getting a bit lengthy, stage room can be an issue for us.

Our whole band uses in-ears now, so that's one less heavy item I need to bring (my DXR10 speaker) and this does help with the stage room issue.

As far as stand, again I don't like lightweight stands, that I've tried anyway.   I really dig my Omega pro, love the open space under it.  Not all that foldable with a 2nd tier on it though--I kind of wonder if I can rig some quick connect/disconnect deal instead of the regular bolt/washer/nut that comes with it (handy types, let me know).  Any stand I use has to have a boom attachment, I've been known to forget mic stands at home :).    I have a cart for longer hauls--and unfortunately that Omega pro isn't the best at playing nice in a stack--but normally I can park close enough to the stage to simply do multiple trips (probably 3, considering my fan and rug are part of my rig).

I got a Husky brand rolling toolcart from Home depot that holds boom, cables, pedalboard, mic/headphone mixer/earbuds.  Basically anything other than my stand or keyboard.  This thing rolls but also stacks nicely on my cart.   I should buy a couple in case they discontinue them!  :)


Other than cart stacking issues, the biggest hassle for me is getting stuff in and out of my vehicle.  It's a smaller suv I "inherited" from my wife, I would prefer something larger and with a lower loading bay--ie, a minivan.   Having a big, wide flat area to load and unload from without any stacking or shoehorning would make things quicker and easier for me.

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52.5 it would seem.  
 

normally 

1 keyboard, one stand, one monitor, bag of tricks.   
 

begrudgingly 

2 keyboards, 2 stands, 2 monitors, bag of tricks.  
 

cart and bungie 

Yamaha CP88, Casio PX-560

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62. Duo act and I also bring PA. 

 

Keyboard rig: 

- CK88 (road case)

- Arturia Keylab 61 (soft case)

- Mac-mini

 

PA:

- 2 QSC K10-2 PA speakers

- soundcraft notepad mixer

- A couple bags with cables/mics/stands

 

Everything fits in cart except CK 88 so two trips from car. Setup is 45-60 minutes. 

 

We also occasionally do a reduced setup in small spaces:

- CK88

- JBL EON Compact One in a bag with all needed cables (has built-in mixer and is only speaker for 2 vocals, guitar and CK88)

- keyboard stand

 

One trip without cart: big compromise in sounds and sound quality but gotta love the 5 minute setup!

 

What I would really like is something like a stereo version of the Mackie Showbox with an optional satellite powered speaker for stereo. Would have some of the advantages of my small setup but be stereo. I guess the Yamaha stagepas is close with passive speakers. 

 

Yamaha CK88, Arturia Keylab 61 MkII, Moog Sub 37, Yamaha U1 Upright, Casio CT-S500, Mac Logic/Mainstage, iPad Camelot, Spacestation V.3, QSC K10.2, JBL EON One Compact

www.stickmanor.com

There's a thin white line between fear and fury - Stickman

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10 hours ago, Dave Ferris said:

I'll be 71 in 9 days.

 

 When an acoustic piano of unplayable quality is there, or no piano at all, I bring a keyboard and my own sound.

I alternate between my Yamaha CP88 & P515, depending on the schlep, my mood, the players on the gig and the overall musical vibe I anticipate.

 

I still always run stereo (one of a dying breed among my peers) and bring my RCF TT08-A IIs and JMK Audio JM-110 di/ pre amp. I use the Amazon 13" folding steps and occasionally the short York speaker poles. I alternate between the K&M Omega and the lightweight 18880 stands, again depending on my mood and how I'm physically feeling that day. All transported on my 42 year old Magliner Gemini Jr. dolly.  Which in itself is feeling more beastly to lift into the back of my Forester these days.  I've always worn work gloves while moving gear to protect my hands. And I do go slower these days.

 

The individual weight of each piece doesn't bother me. But all the plugging in of the cables- a pair of instrument, xlrs & ac for each of the speakers + keyboard and DI ps ac and extension box - can get old. I could eliminate the JMK piece and go direct but the sound is thinner and less detailed.

 

It is a lot of work I make for myself running stereo, plus when you add on dealing with LA traffic, but it's not like I'm doing this 3-4 nights a week like I was into my middle 60s.  I would say on the average I move gear four to five times a month. Anymore would seem like too much.

 

There are still a number of times I play the acoustic piano there. I know most of the places where it's decent and not totally brutal. Herb Albert's place, "Vibrato", has a very well cared for newer C7X. That and the C7X at Sam First (I've only played there twice) by LAX are easily the best pianos in town at a club. A couple private homes that put on regular house concerts have some good ones too.

 

I'm very picky about keyboard action and piano sound. If it doesn't feel and sound right to me, it's not fun and I'd rather stay home and practice. Gigs have to be on my terms these days, no exceptions, otherwise call someone else.

 

25E4CAD4-BD9C-4061-B1CC-B4F3AA5AF736_1_201_a.jpeg

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0C4BCC1D-48A4-4737-9405-EA2FFDE27C6F_1_201_a.jpeg


wow. Beautiful rig. Eight there with you, Dave. 

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'55 and '59 B3's; Leslies 147, 122, 21H; MODX 7+; NUMA Piano X 88; Motif XS7; Mellotrons M300 and M400’s; Wurlitzer 206; Gibson G101; Vox Continental; Mojo 61; Launchkey 88 Mk III; Korg Module; B3X; Model D6; Moog Model D

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21 hours ago, cphollis said:

Age: 65

 

I use a Nord Stage 4 Compact with a Nord Piano 5 76 as a midi controller underneath.   I generally use IEMs or headphones to monitor.  A light Spider Pro stand, a few pedals, and that's basically it.   I find both boards very easy to handle, zero complaints.

 

One interesting aspect is that I rarely play a gig past 9pm or maybe 10  because that's when the audience goes home.  Being home in bed by 11pm makes a big difference the next morning.  A light rig does help though.

 

 

I'm younger than Chuck - my rig is the same, but older. Nord Stage 2 compact, with a Nord Stage Classic controller. IEMs, and a Stagg MXS-A3 accordion-style stand. Pedals and looms of cable (one to each keyboard, plus one to my Rolls PM351) and IEMs. 

 

Cheers, Mike.

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