Broadcast live for the first time ever from the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, the 64th GRAMMY Awards were full of meaningful moments and performances supported by wireless audio technology from Niles, Ill.-based Shure. As in years prior, majority of the night’s performances featured Shure Axient Digital wireless microphones. Some of the industry’s most iconic names and innovative artists used the microphones. This includes Jon Batiste, winner of Album Of The Year.
The evening kicked off with a funky performance from Bruno Mars and Anderson .Paak as Silk Sonic. The retro soul-funk artists relied on Shure wireless microphones as they performed their hit, “777.” Behind the scenes, Chris Rabold, FOH mixer for Silk Sonic, oversaw their performance with the support of Shure Axient Digital.
Silk Sonic & Shure
“Having Bruno and Anderson and the whole Silk Sonic gang on Axient Digital for not only the Grammys, but for their Las Vegas residency is just such a no brainer,” shares Rabold. “There are things you do, decisions you make, from a live audio perspective that are done out of preference and then there are the things you do because it’s simply the smart move. For us, Axient is the latter of the two. It’s the most stable, most reliable, best supported and, most importantly, best sounding option available.”
Meanwhile, Michael Abbott, audio producer, oversaw the live broadcast of the GRAMMY Awards show. His longtime team of accomplished audio engineers and sound technicians also helped him. “Our team knows we can depend on Shure gear to capture the high-quality sound of the GRAMMY Awards,” remarks Abbott. “Shure consistently provides a reliable frequency coordination solution for in-ear monitors and wireless microphones for the artists performing on the broadcast.”
Other Noteworthy Performances
Jon Batiste relied on a Shure BETA 58 wireless microphone for his performance of “Freedom.” He later won five of his 11 GRAMMY nominations. J Balvin and Maria Becerra delivered “Qué Más Pues?” on a Shure BETA 58 and KSM8 wireless microphone, respectively. Lil Nas X also performed with a Shure KSM9HS. He performed alongside Jack Harlow, who used an SM58 wireless microphone. The two led a praiseworthy live routine of their collaboration, “Industry Baby.” Alongside this, rapper and songwriter Nas received a standing ovation after delivering a montage of his career hits via an SM58 wireless mic. Brothers Osborne also sang into Shure BETA 58’s for the performance of their hit, “Dead Man’s Curve,” to close out the award show. They also claimed the award for Best County Duo/Group Performance.
All these performances relied on the clarity and flexibility of Shure Axient Digital Wireless. Shure adds that its key supplier ATK Audiotek provided the sound system design and implementation for the show. Overall, the GRAMMYs relied on 28 channels of Shure Axient Digital. The production handheld microphones were all Shure KSM9’s and the lavalier microphones were Shure TwinPlex TL47. Nearly every performance also depended on the Shure PSM 1000 in-ear monitoring system. This totaled 34 channels.
Notably, the team orchestrated 250 Shure hand-wired microphones on the many instruments that graced the GRAMMY stage. Shure Beta 181’s helped mic the piano throughout the show. “Once again, the Beta 181’s provided perfect piano sound for our needs,” adds Ron Reeves, FOH.
Navigating the RF Environment
The company then points to the sheer amount of wireless used throughout the show. As a result, frequency coordination was pivotal in creating a seamless production for at home. Soundtronic’s RF Coordinator, Steve Vaughn thus managed the frequencies. He then declares Shure Axient Digital and Wireless Workbench as the most reliable, quality solution for managing the frequencies. Vaughn also notes that the frequencies were occurring in a completely saturated RF spectrum. Thus, he adds, “This level of dependability is exactly what we have come to expect from our Shure gear.”
Even in the busy RF environment, Shure says it brought flawless wireless audio solutions to the professionals overseeing the entire broadcast. Shure artist and entertainment relations specialist Jenn Liang-Chaboud speaks on this. She remarks, “Each year, Shure is proud to have our gear play an important role in helping cutting-edge artists bring their music to the world at the GRAMMY Awards. Congratulations to all the musicians, engineers, and technicians involved.”
Click on “View Slideshow” on upper-right corner for images of the award-winning performances at the 64th GRAMMY Awards.