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What equipment do I need for a one man show?


I've seen lots of entertainment where there is just one person playing a guitar, usually rhythm, and singing along with the music. Usually they have a laptop and a foot switch and speaker system. Is it special equipment? software? I would like to have a set up like that in my basement but don't know what I need to get started. I do have the songs I want in mp3 format, guitar, amp, speakers. What am I missing? Thank you.
December 5, 2011 @04:04pm

There can be multiple answers to your question. I can shed a little light, but there are probably many others who can get more into detail.
The laptop is probably being used to "sequenced" songs in order for the performer. All of the instruments except what is being played live are there allowing the perfomer to sing and play, filling the "hole" left if the sequenced songs. The footswitch is being used for a couple of things - 1 - to begin the next song playing and/or 2 - to activate harmony vocals on a machine like a vocalist live. Hope this helps.
December 16, 2011 @08:22pm

Yeah, there's usually a laptop with sequencing software like ableton or logic. Something that would be sweet if you have a mac, you can get an app called main stage that you can get for $29. It's an insane value. It does a lot of useful stuff, but won't replace a daw. If you are serious about recording, I would consider Investing in some decent sequencing software and an audio interface.
Here's some stuff to look at if you are a beginner:
and even if you plan on working mainly with audio, this is still good to know:
December 21, 2011 @01:58am

I've been doing a One Man band for about 20 years. Many folks will get General Midi sequences for free off the internet and simply use them in whatever key a song is compatible with their voice to sing. At the very least, you need a basic GM compatible sequencer to handle this. The term DAW stands for digital audio workstation, and this is what the vast majority of solo and duo acts use to create, manipulate and play back their backing tracks. Garage Band on the Mac is excellent and I used it exclusively for many years. I now start some tunes there but end up doing most of the recording, mixing and mastering using Logic Pro. In the PC world, there is Power Tracks Pro, Sonar, Ableton, etc. You can play back the completed songs off an iPod, iPad or iPhone on a Mac or any other mp3 type portable player. I don't use a laptop, although many musicians do. You'll also need some type of PA system, your instrument, usually guitar or a keyboard and a vocal mic. Almost all solo performers are singers so being able to sing at least decently is a real help. Harmony Central has an excellent forum for Solo and Duo musicians which can be quite helpful. I did a video sampler of my One Man Band a few months ago which is representative of the material I do. You can watch it here-

Watch people that do this on YouTube, Gigmasters and Gig Salad by watching their videos. Good luck!
Riley Wilson
January 15, 2013 @03:20pm

or you could go the herbie route with his fazioli
January 16, 2013 @02:28am