MTV’s Coke Studio enters third series with Harman
INDIA: Flying Carpet Productions and Sound.Com recently collaborated to support a unique music production, which saw AKG mics and headphones, Soundcraft mixing consoles and JBL monitors supplied to The Coke Studio at MTV India. Now in its third season, the television broadcast event brings together the country’s top independent, classical, folk and popular artists into one series.
Sponsored by the Coca-Cola Company, the show invites musicians from different genres to perform together while recording the resulting collaboration on the spot. The series attracted a reported 40 million viewers in the second season alone, and this year, the season featured composer AR Rahman with artists such as Sivamani, Amit Trivedi, Clinton Cerejo and Grammy Award winning engineer Stephen Fitzmaurice.
Supporting the show is audio and music production company Flying Carpet Productions, the sonic architect and turnkey audio solutions provider. Led by audio director, Ashish Manchanda, the company has supported broadcast music formats such as the Coke Studio, MTV Unplugged and has mixed for movie soundtracks including Bhaag Milkha Bhaag and Dev D.
‘With over 200 musicians and over 45 original songs, Season 3 of Coke Studio at MTV presents a plethora of musical flavours, enthralling audiences with unique combinations of music genres and versatile musicians,’ said Mr Manchanda. ‘Thanks to the range of microphones and headphones by AKG and Soundcraft mixing consoles, we are able to capture the performances of the wonderful artists featured on the show – be it vocals or instruments. Considering the live nature of the programme and the expectation for audio clarity, we are very pleased to collaborate with Sound.Com. Their Harman Professional equipment deployed at the show has delivered flawless sound output, receiving very encouraging comments from the musicians and composers.’
Sound.Com provided the entire range of audio equipment and the backend support for the stage equipment setup along with RF technicians. Mr Manchanda along with Warren D’souza, managing director of Sound.Com, opted for a Soundcraft Vi 6 console for use at the audio mixing position along with a Soundcraft Vi1 as a sub-mixer for larger acts. JBL LSR 4328s are in use for monitoring during recording.
‘Coke Studio at MTV is a testimonial to our company’s commitment to cult musical shows on television and the internet,’ confirmed Mr D’Souza. ‘We have the experience and equipment for the artists and producers to deliver successful productions that are enjoyed by the viewers. Our synergy with Flying Carpet Productions is a testimonial to our work on MTV Unplugged and Coke Studio and we will continue to deliver our best by exploiting technology to the limit.’
‘The Vi6 console has a remarkably intuitive Vistonics interface which made it easy to handle almost 60 inputs on each episode of the show with relative ease,’ noted Mark Thomas, systems engineer for the project. ‘We chose to work on the Soundcraft Vi6 this year due to its ViSi iPad app. During the recording sessions each musician in the house band was given control over his/her mix using the ViSi remote app on an iPad. This enabled them to tweak their mixes for every song, based on their individual requirements, while the engineer concentrated on handling the in-ear monitor mixes for the guest musicians and singers. The musicians were ecstatic about being able to control their own personal mixes with no learning curve. We used up to 12 iPads simultaneously on the Salim- Sulaiman episode, without a single re-sync issue or network glitch.’
‘As far as monitoring is concerned for the series, the amount of inputs we had to cater to was challenging,’ added Ezekiel Tyle, monitoring engineer for the show.
‘The Soundcraft Vi6 definitely made life simple in terms of monitoring, having the flexibility to make all of the busses into auxiliaries as per the requirement of individual producers. It was an absolute pleasure to work on this board.’
For microphone technology, the show is outfitted with an assortment of AKG models including AKG DSR 700 V2 wireless systems, D7 and D5 microphones for back-up vocals. Other microphones such as C414s for drum overheads and piano and C451s for cymbals and guitars have been deployed at the show. For consistency, all artists on the show use AKG K171 MK II headphones.
‘This association exemplifies Harman’s commitment to quality and our ability to deliver on any stage,’ said Prashant Govindan, director, India operations, Harman Professional. ‘Harman’s AKG, Soundcraft and JBL products combined with the experienced professionals from Flying Carpet Productions and Ssound.Com provided perfect and reliable sound for yet another successful edition of Coke Studio at MTV India.’
‘We are very excited to be a part of the Coke Studio at MTV, India’s unique exploration of India’s rich musical landscape,’ concluded Ankush Agarwal, director, marketing and business development, Harman Professional India.