© 2019 by  Zlatko Kresic - SOUNDTOPIA

Backing tracks for live performance with band Back in the day, it used to be considered to be some sort of “cheating” for musicians to use pre-recorded backing tracks as part of their live performances. But in the modern world, the use of backing tracks is widespread and accepted as an essential part of today’s live music experience. Even bands that present themselves as having a traditional guitar-bass-drums straight ahead rock & roll sound frequently have computer systems behind or below the stage, either to supplement the live sound with extras such as synth sounds or more guitar tracks as backup in case of problems during the show.

 

You would be amazed at how many well-known bands do this (spoiler alert - almost all of them!). Artists using backing tracks range from solo or duo “coffee shop” performers who need a convenient rhythm section and don’t have the space for a drum kit; to electronic acts that use multi-tracked synths and plugins as part of their sound; to mega touring acts who need to reproduce the sound of their hit records which may have been recorded with dozens of musicians and hundreds of original tracks. Your author knows of one very successful live reggae band who had their entire performance on multi-track because frequently members of the band were so stoned while they were playing that they couldn’t keep time!

 

Each different type and size of act will have different requirements, but there are some common features and things to bear in mind when setting out to use backing tracks for your own live performances. Let’s look at the different possibilities…

need individual mixdown? send us an mail...