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Yamato Drummers fit the DPA d:vote 4099 on their drums

Yamato Drummers turn to DPA Microphones for European Tour

The Yamato Drummers of Japan have recently been taking their 20th Anniversary world tour, “Rojyoh”, around Europe, through Holland, Germany, Switzerland and Austria, using DPA Microphones’ d:vote™ Rock Touring Kit to reinforce the sound of their amazing drums.

The world-famous drumming group was Founded by Masa Ogawa in Nara, ‘the land of Yamato’, in 1993. Nara is said to be the birthplace of Japanese culture, though the Wadaiko drums around which the Yamato drumming group is based bear somewhat of a mythological stance in Japanese folklore, believed to have been introduced into Japan through Korean and Chinese influence between 300-900 CE.

The drumming troupe’s has reportedly always favoured American or European engineers, and their current FOH follows suit. Hailing from the Netherlands, FOH engineer Erik Bouwmeester, has opted for using DPA microphones to capture the thunderous sound of the Yamato group on tour.

We have been using DPA mics on stage for a few years now. We use the d:fine 4066 Headset Microphones for vocals or flutes and the d:screet™ 4060 Omnidirectional Miniature Microphones for string instruments such as the guitar-like Japanese Samisen.

Yamato has become something of a cultural phenomenon in recent years. They have given over 2,500 performances in over 50 different countries and regions of their spectacularly choreographed Taiko drumming.

The troupe tours for between six to ten months a year, creating and presenting original compositions on an impressively global scale.

The Yamato Drummers of JapanThis level of touring means that all equipment has to be very hard wearing to survive the demands of life on the road. Added to this, Yamato’s artistic director Masa Ogawa insists that the audience must not see any microphone during the show. Happily, the new d:vote 4099 clip mics used by Bouwmeester are discreet enough to ensure that remains the case.

Bouwmeester was introduced to the d:vote 4099 Instrument Microphones on Yamato’s previous European tour. They are a perfect match with our beltpacks and can easily handle the SPL of the drums, which is sometimes more than 132dB, he says. Also the variation of good clips and clamps is very useful. For example we use four guitar clamps with an elastic extension on the medium drums called the Myadaiko. We also use a single d:vote 4099 on the biggest drum Yamato plays, the Odaiko which weighs almost 500kg, but it has no problems in picking up that sound as well.

In total Bouwmeester uses 32 wireless channels, 14 of which are miked with DPA microphones. These are fed through a d&b audiotechnik PA system via a Digidesign venue profile/mixrack Front of House console.

Having successfully used the DPA d:vote 4099 Instrument Microphones in Europe, Bouwmeester says the Yamato Drummers troupe is now considering buying another DPA Rock Kit package for their own shows in Japan, after which they will be returning to Europe in June 2014 for a run of shows in Germany and Eastern Europe.

Obviously I will be using my DPA Rock Touring kit for those shows as well, concludes Bouwmeester.

To find out more on how DPA Microphones could help your live sound contact Sound Network, exclusive distributor for DPA Microphones in the United Kingdom.

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