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Super Bowl XLV – sounds like Fisher Price

Again, The Rant Files cameo courtesy of a slightly understanding new blog owner and literary stiffler www.sophisticatedpittsburgh.com.

Well, you know me as Screaming Weasel, which is actually a pen name for a few writers for SWB.  The one writing this has been a sound tech for about 25 years.  Oh, on a side note, we aren’t actually going to pick on Fisher Price at all – we remember those little record players they made and think they were really cool.  Considering vinyl DJs still use them when digging for records, we still consider them cool.

Alllllllright …. having noted that we have a professional “on staff” (for the clueless, the quotes mean that we aren’t paid to write this stuff), we are slightly perplexed that the sound on about $40 to $60 million dollars worth of air time sounded like that kid next door that started doing sound for the next door garage band immediately after unboxing his new mixer he received from an Ebay auction.

Here is the deal … that tech probably got AT LEAST five digits worth of pay, not to mention a paid flight, not to mention probably triple what I make a year doing sound for his expenses alone.  I believe in some level of grace, but when you are paid that much and are working during that critical and expensive space of airtime, perfection is not only requested … it is completely required.

We’re not talking about a few little mess ups that could be effectively covered up (even with the quality of audio now on HD units), but total screw ups that even a novice doesn’t make.  I know this, because after 25 years of doing sound, and every one of those years being taught by someone that knows better than me, I still mess up, but have been trained well enough to recover in a way that most listeners or audiences don’t know it happened, and if  they do, the dignity and integrity of the performance is still maintained.

I personally know at least 100 or more techs that would have done that job to perfection FOR FREE just to be there.  They would have considered it their duty to the millions of people watching to do the tech work for that performance to perfection.  Nothing less would have been acceptable to them.

The low quality of sound tech work in Super Bowl XLV was a prime example of how pride if the quality of American work has been lowered in the current generations. We’re not saying we have proof it was the new whipper-snapper doing the sound work, but we think it’s a pretty good guess.  Our guess too is that he may not have a job or be able to get one after Super Bowl XLV.


PS – Turning the channel ON is NOT brain surgery. What would have been both live and on TV one of the best Super Bowl half-time shows was leveled to “B” movie quality by a sub par tech one the job.

Oh – a quick Kudos to Fergie, The Black Eyed Peas, and all performers involved for not losing it and stringing up the tech during the performance.

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