Archive for May, 2010

Tribute to U2 Concert : General Overview

Finally tribute is over ! Well actually finally college is over, tribute is done long time ago. I’m done with all the assignments, exam, and it’s time to go out and shine. I finally decide to write a new category called “Concerts & Events” and what’s inside ? Well obviously it’s all about sound geek, everything I know about setting up, hooking, interconnecting, mixing a live event and concerts & events that I’ve attended or mixed !

I hope to cover more when I learn more in the future. So to mark the start of this category, I’ll write an overview about Tribute to U2 concert.

ICOM organize a tribute concert every semester to a particular musician or band they choose every semester to pay tribute to their music and to allow student to have a platform to learn about their music and put off a show for the public. Well of course it also allow us, the production student get to involve with the production department.

I’m automatically called on board the production team as I joined the previous tribute concert, where they pay tribute to the late king of pop – Michael Jackson. Miqi was called to be the FOH engineer and she’s also the Technical Director. I am the crew chief and the system engineer for this concert and I would have to work very closely with Miqi to ensure the show and sound checks run smoothly. The very first task we got turned out to be the hardest part for the whole concert (at least to me) – searching the right crew.

When we started to look for crew, only a few person came across my mind, one of them is Kenny, who I’m very unsure of doing the job well (but in the end doing a great job!) and Marcel. Knowing Marcel, I always knew that if I were to assign task to him he would complete it well and when I first speak to him about joining the production team, he said no as he’s involved with work outside. Only few days before we start the first few soundcheck, he took my offer and I am seriously relieved knowing that my team is sufficient to run the show.

And well that is nothing like outside world, looking for crew and all, but at least I get to train my leadership, to train and to handle a team together. I guess a team of two is fine to start with, no ? 😛

So, all aboard now ! Let’s see who we have :

(top L – R : Nilesh, Yee Ven, Lee, Kenny, Me , Sam, Daniel)
(bottom L – R : Omar, Adrienne, Marcel, Miqi, Shan, Dean)

Miqi – Technical Director / FOH

Shaowei – Crew Chief / System Design

Marcel , Kenny – Stage Tech

Dean , Dan – Guitar Tech

Omar – Drum Tech

Yee Ven – Recording Engineer

Samantha – Backstage Manager

Adrienne , Shan – Lightning Engineer

It’s quite a large team compared to the previous tribute concert, but so far it’s the best team I’ve worked with. Please bear in mind that all of us were students and non of us was paid a single cent, well I hope to most of us it doesn’t really matter getting to do what you really enjoy and like ( at least I really enjoyed ).

When we get the whole team ready, the first thing I did with Miqi was to plan a production schedule to ensure we’re doing work according to schedule, including set up to sound check, to tear down, which in the end we actually made some changes last minute. Anyway that I will get to that in other post which will include detailed system set up.

If you’re interested in this, do not hesitate to follow this blog and subscribe so that you’ll be notified if there’s new posts !


Finding Your Calling : What Is a Vocation?

“Blessed is he that has found his work! Let him ask no other blessedness.”—Carlye

There are two great decisions in a man’s life, two poles around which the first quarter of his typically life revolve: whom to marry and which occupation to pursue.

The latter is a question we face as soon as we are old enough to talk. “What do you want to be when you grow up?” is a query put to us by parents, teachers, and friends. In our teen years we are content to keep our plans vague and nebulous. But in college the pressure builds-we want to choose a major related to our future career. But we may still not know what career we’re aiming for. So we change majors once, twice, and maybe more.

And then we graduate. Society says we have now entered the world of work and should be diving into our chosen profession. But even then, many of us aren’t sure what profession that’s supposed to be.

We typically have a better idea of what we don’t want in a job than what we do. Not something mundane, something like what our dads did-long hours stuck in a cubicle feeling like a cog in a corporate machine, Maalox and scotch hidden in a desk drawer. After all, a third of our lives will be spent working; we’ll probably spend more time at work than we do with our spouse and kids. It’s no wonder we agonize over “what to be when we grow up”…even when we’re all grown up.

We want a job that doesn’t actually feel like a job. Something that uses our talents and brings us great satisfaction.

What we really want isn’t a job at all; we want a vocation, a calling.

Three Perspectives on Work

There are three ways people look at what they do for work:

A Job. Those who see their work as a job are those who belt out “Everybody’s Working for the Weekend” with great gusto. They live for breaks, for vacation. The job is simply a means to the end: a paycheck. They need to support their family/pay their rent, and this is the ticket they punch to do it. The job may not be terrible, but it offers the worker very little real satisfaction.

A Career. The careerist derives meaning not from the nature of the work itself but the gratification that comes from advancing through the ranks and earning promotions and raises. This motivates the careerist to put in extra time; work doesn’t necessarily stop when they punch out. However, once this forward progress stops, the careerist becomes unsatisfied and frustrated.

A Vocation/Calling. A vocation is work you do for its own sake; you almost feel like you’d do it even if you didn’t get paid. The rewards of wages and prestige are peripheral to getting to use one’s passion in a satisfying way. Those in a vocation feel that their work has an effect on the greater good and an impact beyond themselves. They believe that their work truly utilizes their unique gifts and talents. This is what they were meant to do.

When it comes to life satisfaction and happiness, those with a job are the least satisfied, then those with a career, and those with a vocation feel the most satisfied. No surprises there. A vocation encompasses more than the work you are paid for; it taps into your whole life purpose. When you’ve found your calling, you know it- your life is full of of joy, satisfaction, and true fulfillment. Conversely, if you’re living a life at odds with your vocation, there’s no doubt about that either. You’re indescribably restless; you wake up in the middle of the night feeling like you can’t breathe, like there’s a great weight on your chest; life seems to be passing you by and you have no idea what to do about it.

What Is a Vocation?

“The deepest vocational question is not “What ought I to do with my life?” It is the more elemental and demanding ‘Who am I? What is my nature?’” -Parker J. Palmer

The etymology of vocation versus career is most revealing. The word vocation comes from the Latin word “vocare” or “to call.” It denotes a voice summoning a person to a unique purpose. The word career derives from the Latin word for cart and the Middle French word for race track. It denotes quickly moving in a circle, never going anywhere.

Man was made to embrace his unique destiny, not soldier on as a hamster in a wheel. Or in the words of Lily Tomlin, “The problem with the rat race is that even if you win, you’re still a rat.”

So if a vocation is something that calls to you-who is doing the calling? And how do you listen to its voice?

Have you ever noticed how much of children’s personalities seen to come hardwired into them? Only a few months into life babies start showing a unique personality. Young children already have characteristics, inclinations, proclivities, likes and dislikes that follow them all the way into adulthood. It’s pretty wild really. When I think about my siblings and I, I’m always amazed how three people who were born to and raised by the same parents, in the same place, could turn out so differently and take such different paths.

I believe the seeds of your true self are born within you. Author Parker J. Palmer calls these seeds “birthright gifts.”

Your birthright gifts are what make you an entirely unique person, with a unique purpose and special talents you can give to the world and to others. Thus, the call comes from within you, not from without; it is a call to bring these seeds to fruition. These are the seeds of your true self, planted within you when you were born. You may believe that the seeds were planted specially by God, by chance, or even that you existed before this incarnation of yourself. Unfortunately, as we grow up, this true self gets buried by the influence and expectations of family, friends, teachers, and the media. We get sorted and labeled and placed into slots. Instead of listening to the call within us, we make decisions based on a need for approval, prestige, and security.

Embracing your calling means shutting off the voices of what others say you ought to do and living true to your real self. Not imitating dad or other men you admire. We take seriously everything but our own thoughts and beliefs-we drink up what our teachers tell us, what our parents tell us, what our ministers tell us. We eagerly lap up quotes from great men. We find these source of truth valuable, but dismiss our own insights and philosophy as hopelessly insignificant. But as Rabbi Zusya has said, “In the coming world, they will not ask me: ‘Why were you not Moses?” They will ask me: ‘Why were you not Zusya?’”

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This is all you need

“Do your time,  earn your credibility, establish yourself as one of the best at what you decide to do.”

Dave Rat

Dave Rat is the man.

Can I be the Dave Rat of Asia?

People will recognize you for it

On a personal note, I have to say that seeing my creation on that stage in front of so many people was a dream/prayer fulfilled. From the day I first started working on my designs to that concert on Tuesday night, I have experienced every level of blood sweat and tears imaginable and had countless opportunities to quit and give up, but thankfully I never gave in. This hobby turned career has taught me many things but I have learned about nothing as much as I have learned about myself. My advice to anyone starting anything is to never give up. If you believe in what you do, stick with it because on some level you know you are right and once you know that, it’s just a matter of convincing the rest of the world you are right. Of the two battles, convincing yourself or convincing others, convincing yourself is the hardest. Once you reach the place where you know that you are good at what you do and you have a vision for where you want to go, hold tight to it and never let go. Then, if you truly are good at what you do, people will recognize you for it.