How Do You Give the Audience a Sonic Experience?



  • For the most part, if you perform (for cost or for free), your audience will be non musicians. How do we give them (for lack of a better description) a sonic experience. We've all experienced it when we've heard something that just amazed us. The effects? Some of us will get goosebumps, or even cry while some of us will fidget nervously. The bottom line is that we have been exposed to a sonic experience.
    What do you consider the necessary elements needed to give the audience (and possibly yourself) a sonic experience?



  • Not to be glib, but targeting your audience and giving them quality music.



  • @Dr-Mark Vince DiMartino had a 3 point strategy that always works = higher, faster, louder!

    My only issue with the question is that ‘sonic’ could be defined by some to not include playing musically ... just getting thrilled by a screaming high trumpet note. (Remember, the audience is mostly non-musicians).

    I witnessed a flawless concert by Maurice Andre in Lexington, KY in the ‘80’s that was the most amazing sonic expense I have heard. Legato tones and exquisite musicality that was stunning. It really was perfect. Not one bad note.

    One of my favorite sonic moments involving me plying was when I gathered some friends to play a wedding reception for one of my best friends. Everyone was just having a great time and the guests were just having more and more fun with every song. Just a magic night that everyone there remembers as something special ... perhaps even sonic.



  • @Shepherds_Crook said in How Do You Give the Audience a Sonic Experience?:

    One of my favorite sonic moments involving me plying was when I gathered some friends to play a wedding reception for one of my best friends. Everyone was just having a great time and the guests were just having more and more fun with every song. Just a magic night that everyone there remembers as something special ... perhaps even sonic.

    But the scientist in me asks, could the more and more fun be related to alcohol consumption (after all this IS a wedding). Relaxing the inhibition of mind may make the sound coming in a less complex function and therefore a more relaxing, enjoyable "sonic" experience...



  • sonic.
    [ˈsänik]
    ADJECTIVE
    denoting, relating to, or of the nature of sound or sound waves.

    For the non-musician the nature of the sound or sound wave may be more tolerated when not providing excessive energy (loudness).

    How many times have we musicians been told by an audience member that the music is too loud and to play softer?
    THEN
    How many times have we musicians been told by an audience member that the music is to soft and to play louder?



  • @Shepherds_Crook said in How Do You Give the Audience a Sonic Experience?:

    My only issue with the question is that ‘sonic’ could be defined by some to not include playing musically ... just getting thrilled by a screaming high trumpet note.


    Good point but it was the only term I could come up with. You helped clarify the term "sonic" by telling us about your experience when listening to Andre and your playing at the wedding.



  • @Kehaulani said in How Do You Give the Audience a Sonic Experience?:

    Not to be glib, but targeting your audience and giving them quality music.


    That's one of the things I do. Figure who I'm playing to and have practiced the music for that particular audience.



  • Be immersed in the music, listen, and enjoy yourself. The audience will too.



  • @Vulgano-Brother
    One of the first things I do is to understand what my audience is probably looking for. If I'm playing for a swank event, then playing a trumpet version of AC/DC's Thunder Struck probably won't do.
    Also, I need to know if I'm just there to drown out the silence and glasses are clinging or is it a show and the focus is on me.
    Next, I know the lyrics to every song I play if it has lyrics. That way I can emote better.
    I also (if the show is about me) take the time to talk a little about the song I'm about to play. This really helps the audience get it.
    Next, I watch the audience. They will tell em if its too loud or too soft. If people are talking, keys are rattling and I don't feel the performance, I'm messing up and it's usually because my head is elsewhere and not in the moment. I then get back to the basics and focus on what I'm suppose to be doing, entertaining people. I immerse myself as VB said, and I listen to the room. Not my trumpet but the room my trumpet is playing in and even if I feel like S***, I pack a smile and never complain.
    I like to walk around when I play and if I see someone who is attentive, I'll walk near their area and play to them. This can cause a sonic moment for sure pending my valves don't stick or a bottom cap doesn't fall off (had both to happen several times). If necessary, I stop and jokingly say to the audience, "That does it, someone's getting fired!" I feel those moments make me more human and likeable.
    If its an intimate setting, I'll ask if there is anything they would like to hear. That can be a real goose bump moment for the audience because they hear and watch me serenade a person or couple and it really takes hold if the person or couple begin to cry.
    Finally, when I'm finished, I always take time to talk to the audience that hung around to see me and sign autographs when they want one and the only way I leave without greeting everyone is if I have to shoot out of there because I have another show to do which requires a quick rinse off in their restroom and a change of shirts before I get to the next venue.
    I'm sure there more but this is the crux of the biscuit for me to giving the audience a sonic moment



  • @Dr-Mark said in How Do You Give the Audience a Sonic Experience?:
    ...the only way I leave without greeting everyone is if I have to shoot out of there because I have another show to do which requires a quick rinse off in their restroom and a change of shirts before I get to the next venue.

    Dr. Mark on his way to his next Sonic Gig:
    8ac59c5f-96cb-4bd4-b471-4887a508048e-image.png



  • @Dr-Mark said in How Do You Give the Audience a Sonic Experience?:
    Finally, when I'm finished, I always take time to talk to the audience that hung around to see me and sign autographs...

    For me, I like to hang around to rap with the audience. And to prove the point, this is me at the last gig that demonstrates my function in the band as the "w-rapper" which is always good to get some snickers from the audience!
    f59a7f52-9d0a-4d00-8edf-93f4b6ae7b94-image.png



  • @Shepherds_Crook said in How Do You Give the Audience a Sonic Experience?:

    One of my favorite sonic moments involving me plying was when I gathered some friends to play a wedding reception for one of my best friends. Everyone was just having a great time and the guests were just having more and more fun with every song. Just a magic night that everyone there remembers as something special ... perhaps even sonic.


    Yes! having fun is an important ingredient in making a musical experience special (sonic) my opinion.



  • Dynamics. Make the soft sections really soft and the loud parts really LOUD! Contrast is your ally for keeping the music interesting. Of course, playing well is a given, and yes, if you look like you're glad to be there and are having fun, the audience will respond.



  • @Bob-Pixley said in How Do You Give the Audience a Sonic Experience?:

    Dynamics. Make the soft sections really soft and the loud parts really LOUD! Contrast is your ally for keeping the music interesting. Of course, playing well is a given, and yes, if you look like you're glad to be there and are having fun, the audience will respond.

    I so agree. This is essential. The power of dynamics (especially playing softer) really brings the audiences' ears into understanding the musicality behind the performance.


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