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Summerfest 11 Days Over 800 Acts and 10 Yamaha Consoles

August, 2013

Summerfest: 11 Days and 10 Yamaha Consoles

With nearly 900,000 attendees over eleven days, Summerfest in Milwaukee, Wisconsin set new records in providing the backdrop for the music industry’s hottest stars, emerging talent, and local favorites to create unforgettable live music experiences in a world-class festival setting.

Clearwing Productions, Inc. (Milwaukee), with support from Yamaha Commercial Audio Systems, Inc. provided new Yamaha CL digital consoles along with PM5D-RH consoles, M7CL and LS9 consoles to 7 of the 11 stages. Yamaha staff provided support to those visiting engineers who have not yet had the experience of mixing on a CL console.

“The decision to use the new CL and other Yamaha consoles was very easy,” states Bryan Baumgardner, Operations/Logistics, Clearwing Productions, Inc. “With how reliable and rider-acceptable Yamaha consoles have been for us, there was really no question that the CL5s were ready to be put to use at Summerfest.”

US Cellular Stage had two Yamaha CL5 consoles, one at front of house and one for monitors. The Uline Warehouse Stage consisted of a CL5 at FOH and an M7CL-48 at monitors. The Johnson Controls World Stage also used a CL5 at FOH and an M7CL-48 at monitors. The Marcus Amphitheatre used a PM5D at monitors and so did the BMO Harris Pavilion and the Miller Stage. The Kohl’s Children's Area was outfitted with a Yamaha LS9-16.

“I converted my PM5D file using Console File Converter, which worked beautifully,” states Jerry Wong, front of house engineer for Loverboy who performed on the Uline Warehouse Stage. “Then, I added several of the Rupert Neve compressors and an 1176 on the fly at the start of the show, and even in a festival situation everything just seemed to fall right into place and mix itself. The CL is a great sounding console and now will be on our rider.”

Morris Day & the Time performed on the Johnson Controls World Sound Stage, and Ed Irons, front of house engineer said the console delivered warmth and clarity. “The signal flow, control surface perks, and blending of vintage processing makes the CL5 a hands-down winner for me. Loved it!”

“The Yamaha CL is a very user-friendly console and sounds amazing,” says Ryan Nichols, Switchfoot FOH engineer. “I love the mic pre's, and the Premium Rack is just one of many great upgrades from other Yamaha desks. I've only used the CL a few times before, each in festival situations, but found it really easy to get around on quickly.”

Spin Doctors front of house engineer, Rob Killenberger, echoed some of the same sentiments. “I'm really happy with the CL Series. It's on my rider; I love the much-improved sound of the CL and all of the toys inside. It's very responsive and well thought out.”

“As the band engineers have stated, the Yamaha CL console sounds good, it’s user friendly, and the File Converter makes coming from any Yamaha console a breeze. Those attributes are a must in a festival environment as demanding as this one,” adds Baumgardner.

For more information on Clearwing Productions, Inc. visit

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