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Shaffer's Keyboard Rig Setup?


Does anyone know what Paul Shaffer's setup is on the "Late Show with David Letterman"?
The CBS goons have seen fit to mask the keyboard rear panels so you don't see the brand name. (Guess they couldn't find a way to mask the Yamaha logo on Anton Figg's drums!)
The basics appear to be a acoustic grand (to Paul's left), a Hammond B3 (center), and a Kurzweil K250 (to Paul's right). Can't tell what the keyboards are that sit atop those three. There may also be some rack-mounted gear off-camera as well.
I tried contacting Late Show staff through the web site to no avail.
If anyone knows this, thanks for your help!
July 17, 2003 @02:31pm

they probably aren't getting paid to advertise the gear, so they block it out. networks are very sensitive about what gets shown on TV and what doesn't. Check out the advertising on a football field next time your watching. everything is fair game and just because a headset or a particular gadget has a certain name on it, doesn't mean its the gadget is made by that company. I'm surprised you don't see coke or pepsi on the back of Shaffer's keyboards none-the-less yamaha or roland.
July 17, 2003 @02:40pm

I am sure there is a branding/marketing issue at play here as you observed (maybe Yamaha was the only one to pony up the bucks to CBS to allow their logo to appear on the drum riser).
As someone that actually makes his living in the field of branding and marketing, I can tell you there is discernible distinction between - Product Placement (like the NFL headsets you mentioned); Advertising (like the changeable message boards at NBA and MLB games); and Incidental Identifications (like the "Fender" script on a guitar head). I suspect the issue with Paul's rig lies somewhere in-between. There isn't even an end-credit at the end of the show ("keyboards and promotional consideration provided by ........").
Having said all that, all I really want to know is if someone out there knows what boards and modules Shaffer is using.
July 17, 2003 @05:21pm

I asked this same question a few weeks ago on another forum - and the consensus was that the big keyboard in front is a Roland JD800. It sits on a B3. And to Paul's left is a grand piano with a Kurzweil - maybe K2000. Now with Paul's bigger band, you really don't hear him play much - except to do those little comedy hits and phrases.
August 6, 2003 @03:31pm

He's also had a K250 in there for the longest time. I think he still does, but I haven't watched in a while so... A couple of years ago we went up and did some repairs/upgrades to his 250. We had a good list at the time, but I think it has changed since then. Yes, I think it is an 800 on the B, if memory serves.
August 6, 2003 @10:27pm

Perhaps the endorsement issue is not with CBS, but, with Paul Shaffer. Have you ever seen him endorse anything in Keyboard Magazine? Electronic Musician? Mix Magazine?
Paul is a "big boy"...been around since the 60's...I am sure he knows the game.
August 7, 2003 @01:51am

Good replies all! I watched Letterman the other night and they were using some new camera angles for some different shots and got some quick glimpses of the keyboard "pit" from the side and behind. Here's what appears he is using:
Front Center
Hammond B3 with a Roland JP8000 on top
Stage Right
Grand Piano, with Kurzweil K2000 (?) and Mackie console on top
Stage Left
Kurzweil K250 with an Oberheim OBX on top
No indication of rack-mounted modules and outboard gear.
August 29, 2003 @09:58pm
Cruel Hoax

He's got (or is about to have, on-screen) a Moog Voyager, too. The connection with me? I work pimping gear as a day job. ay, the floor model Voyager goes down, displaying nothing but "9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9" for preset names. So I transplant an OS into it from my own voyager, and go about building back some presets. Then, a NY branch of my work recquisitions a Moog Voyager for Paul Schaffer, so we send them the sole remaining (floor model) Voyager.
So, as it ends up, Paul Schaffer now has a Moog Voyager, loaded with my presets. Others, too, of course. All loaded by me, though.
January 2, 2004 @03:57am
Michael Ferrante

Hello all. I'm a bit late hopping in on this but I just found this forum while searching the web for a new back up to paul's OBXa used on the show as part of his set up. I've been the Music Technical coordinator at the show for the past 12 years and one of my main responsibilities is looking after Paul and the band's gear.
His current set up consists of the Kurzweil 250 which coincidentally is the same one he was photographed with on the cover of keyboard magazine several years ago. It's used to trigger a series of modules, 2 vintage keys and a Roland 1080. these all hit a volume and wah pedal by way of a Mackie 1202 sub mixer before making their way to the Mackie 16 channel Onyx mixer that sits on top of the piano. That piano is a Baldwin 5' outfitted with Gulbransen midi triggers and a KS 20 control unit. We trigger a Kurzweil PC2R for piano sounds. Also on the piano is a Roland 990 module, primarily used for a blend sound at the top of the theme. The Kurzweil K2000 is the ax on the piano lid. Theres also a B-3 and Leslie with a Roland JD 800 on top. Rounding out the gear is an OBXa and a Moog Voyager loaded with some of paul's custom sounds.
January 24, 2006 @02:36pm

Thanks Michael! That's an amazing array of stuff! Your job sounds pretty cool - but I suspect it has those high-pressure moments when something fails seconds before showtime. Welcome to the forum!
January 28, 2006 @02:00am

A friend of mine has been on the letterman show several times, and I know first hand that Paul uses the B3 and two different Kurzweil keyboards more than the others, even though he has those other things up there.
July 27, 2006 @05:09pm

Paul's K250 has version 5 software on it. He didn't like version 6 for some reason
September 5, 2007 @07:54pm

I spotted a Fantom X,front,top and center one night when the camera swooped extra close to Paul's rig.....
September 6, 2007 @05:17am

I bet you love your job - of course artists can be extremely picky about things I'm sure. Although this is off topic I will be very impressed and appreciative if you can answer another Letterman band question.
Does Alan Chez still play a "Wild Thing" trumpet and what mouthpiece model does he use with it ? Us trumpet players can't identify equipment like you keyboard players can unless they show a real close up and then it's still hard sometime. Alan is a monster player !
September 21, 2007 @12:33pm

i was first wondering if anyone could point to the forum that had his setup some good sounds coming out i noticed a couple times when they do closeups there are midi cables hooked up so im curious if he has some modules offstage.i know he uses some of the midis just so he can use the 88 key to trigger other gear but im wondering if anyone has all the patches etc midis he uses just curious this would be hard to find but cheers to whoever finds it
September 24, 2007 @09:54pm