CMA Awards 2011 looks to Audio-Technica for microphone solutions

The annual Country Music Association Awards saw a variety of Audio-Technica microphones put to use at this year’s event, marking the 18th year of the company’s support for the show.

Taking place from the Bridgestone Arena in Nashville, the 45th CMA Awards featured over 200 Audio-Technica microphones, including an array of hard-wired mics and Artist Elite 5000 Series UHF wireless systems.

The team responsible for the audio at this year’s CMA’s again included a number of high-profile names from the world of broadcast audio. The audio was supervised by award-winning audio producers Michael Abbott and Tom Davis. ATK/Audiotek provided the sound system with FOH mixers Patrick Baltzell and Rick Shimer, while the broadcast music mix was handled by New Jersey/California-based M3’s (Music Mix Mobile’s) John Harris and Jay Vicari. Stage monitoring was handled by Michael Parker and Jason Spence.

Many of the performers used the brand’s Artist Elite 5000 Series UHF wireless system during the course of the show. Audio-Technica endorser and winner of Album of the Year Jason Aldean paired the 5000 Series system with the AEW-T6100 hypercardioid dynamic handheld transmitter for his lead vocals. Aldean also won musical event of the year for his duet ‘Don’t You Wanna Stay’ with Kelly Clarkson.

In a medley of Lionel Richie hits, feautring Richie himself, the members of Little Big Town and Darius Rucker all used the 5000 Series system with AEW-T5400 cardioid condenser handheld transmitter for their vocals. Additionally, in a duet, Grace Potter and long-time Audio-Technica endorser Kenny Chesney both used hard-wired AE5400 cardioid condenser microphones.

Backline microphones included the AT4080 phantom-powered bidirectional ribbon microphone on guitars; AT4050 multi-pattern condenser microphone on guitars and bass; AT4040 cardioid condenser microphone on overheads; AE2500 dual-element cardioid instrument microphone on kick drum; AE5100 cardioid condenser instrument microphone on hi-hat and ride cymbals; AE5400 cardioid condenser microphone on rotary speaker top and AT4050 on rotary speaker bottom (used by Gregg Allman with the Zac Brown Band); ATM650 dynamic instrument microphone on snare; and ATM350 cardioid condenser clip-on microphone on toms and fiddle/violin.

Michael Parker, monitor engineer for the event, stated: “I have used Audio-Technica microphones for years on prominent broadcast award shows, based on their ability to deliver clear, consistent sound. I particularly am fond of their instrument mics, as they are able to reproduce the true timbre and character of the instrument. Their reliability gives me an additional comfort level, which I never take for granted at such high-profile events.”