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Jimmy Davidson Powers Koe Wetzel’s Intense Outlaw Country with ChamSys MagicQ MQ500
USA – Jimmy Davidson has been on quite a roll. A few years ago, the owner of Wiggly Lights started designing shows for bull-rider-turned-country-musician Cody Johnson. Things were lean at first, but Johnson’s career took off like a rocket with a string of Top Ten Billboard hits and sold out arena dates. Now it appears that lightning is striking twice as Davidson (who still works for Cody Johnson) has begun designing for another rising East Texas country star, Koe Wetzel.
On 28th February, Davidson created a stunningly intense light show for his new client. Unlike Johnson’s concerts, which take place at larger venues, the Koe Wetzel shows happen at smaller, but packed-to-the- rafters music halls. Size of the venue notwithstanding though, Davidson is delivering big-time excitement, running a non-stop lighting panorama with his new ChamSys MagicQ MQ500 Stadium.
“The first show I did for Koe was my third time out with my MQ500,” said Davidson. “I had been reading about this console and hearing about it. As my shows for Cody Johnson became more elaborate, I wanted a console that was capable of running more without external processing nodes. The MQ500 fit the bill very well.”
Davidson’s floor package for Koe Wetzel’s shows is built around eight Rogue R2 Wash and four COLORdash Batten-Quad 12 fixtures from Chauvet Professional, as well as eight Intimidator Wash Zoom 450 IRC, two Intimidator Beam 355 IRC and two COLORband PiX USB units from Chauvet DJ.
Flying four of his Intimidator washes and the two beams on upstage truss, he uses them to accent the band with bold backlighting. The Rogue and COLORdash fixtures are positioned on the deck to provide aerial and uplighting, while the remaining units are flown downstage.
“Our goal is to create a really bright wall of colour around the band, accented with pixel mapping,” said Davidson. “We also focus on hitting the audience with some intense light, since that is the nature of this show.”
Pixel mapping provides Davidson with fast moving scenic patterns that keep pace with Wetzel’s hard-driving brand of outlaw country. “We did a lot of pixel mapping with the LED bars,” he said. “The MQ500 make this very easy. I also liked the idea that the execute button is in the middle of the desk. This and the fader layout and all the different shortcuts that are available make busking a lot easier. Plus, the adjustable angle screen increases my comfort level, which is very important given the pace of Koe’s show.”
Davidson also praised the built-in visualiser on the MagicQ MQ500. “I built the first Koe show before I even set foot in the venue,” he said. “The visualiser made it super easy to adjust things.”
Based on his early experience with the MagicQ MQ500, Davidson expects to be using it on gigs for a long time to come. Judging from the trajectory of his clients’ career paths, that should involve working a lot of very big venues.
29th March 2018
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