Where is Mr Horse when you need him for some tech advice, Yoo hoo!!, Henry!?.

21 Responses to “THE HOFNER:”

  1. henry_the_horse says:

    Hello, Tammy. What technical advice do you need? If it is McCartney’s equipment in this picture that needs clarification: 1962 500/1 with pickguard removed (removed between 13 and 16 August 1966), Thomas Organ Super Beatle amplifiers. This photograph: 21st August 1966, Busch Stadium, St. Louis.

    Best regards.

  2. Kwai Chang says:

    The Joke-ner
    the jacket is just sleeves away…

    (henry is probably sowing some wild valve-oats)

  3. MarkC says:

    Does that strap go under the finger board?

  4. mcarp555 says:

    The end of the 500/1 fingerboard sticks out like a tongue, so the strap goes under it (actually around the neck pocket on the body, like you see in the photo). When the Hof was refurbished by Mandolin Bros. in NYC many years later, a strap button was fitted to the heel of the neck.

  5. Kwai Chang says:

    Mr. Bassman Hofner’backer’…

    What do you mean “only a week left”?

  6. Kwai Chang says:

    The Hofner just wouldn’t be the same in a ‘fireglo’ (red sunburst) finish

  7. Suffolk Downs August 18, 1966

  8. henry_the_horse says:

    It looks similar to the Suffolk Downs racecourt, Boston, from 18th August, but it is 21st August, Busch Stadium, St. Louis.

  9. beatlejim55 says:

    Suffolk Downs Racetrack…East Boston Mass…August 18, 1966…

  10. mcarp555 says:

    Hmmm. 18th or 21st? Inquiring minds want to know…

  11. Kwai Chang says:

    Me, too!
    Me, too!
    …I wanna know!
    But wait!
    There’s more…
    Eight days “a more”
    I hay-ay-ay-ay-ate you
    Eight days a more
    is not enough to know I care.
    Look at the tuckered out look on Paul’s face…
    So, the 29th is only 8 or 11 days away
    Carly Simon will now sing Aniticipation…
    but, when your a frayed McCartney
    3 days is an eternity.
    So, I want to know…
    I don’t mind walking
    but, wouldn’t it be easier to ride a horse?
    Eleven days is a damn long week.
    Too much stress could lead to Joker jackets
    neglected kindeys, broken pick guards, more mopeds
    Who needs it?
    Not the bass player in the window

    Another non-related non-symbolism-anon-athon:
    I love harmony
    like the yin/yang
    it’s on the Candlestick Park poster
    so, I think that’s funny
    to include it
    since this
    is total
    It was fitting that the 29th fall on Monday
    So, wait for the boomtown rats to sing it
    if ya hafta

    so 8 or 11 dilemma dilemma
    ‘seven days make a hole weak’
    (it was written on the wedding limo)
    hey, let’s take an armored truck

    (one flea said to the other flea
    “hey, should we walk…
    or, do you wanna take a dog?”)

    Thank God, Im an Atheist!!!

  12. Tammy says:

    Hi Henry, I know this tech advice will sound rudimentary, but it’s something that has always baffled me. When the Fabs played live you can see the amps that were used for their guitars, but did the Fabs have an amp for their vocals?, was it one of the Vox amps on stage?, what about Ringos drums?, how we’re the vocals and drums mixed with three(?) Vox amps you can usually see on the stage?, how would they get levels?

  13. Kwai Chang says:

    That wasn’t a rudimentary question, Tammy. It probably is a fact that Beatles concerts could have been easily ‘put on’ with puppets and a pre-recorded tape. The madness exceeded all predicted levels…and, if anyone attending actually came to listen to the group…futility would be the only function served! You might not even need music on the pre–recorded tape. But, for sure, nobody need worry about signal cancellation, distortion, feedback, or any of that. This is a game of decibels. The band was not equipped to offer a dignified response…but I sure would like someone to give us the whole schematic of live armaments that Mal would get set up. Hey, where’s the mixing desk?
    The fold-back monitors?
    The nevermind…
    I guess it would be trivial to ask “Did they ever have to used the house PA system? The sound was the same…
    The best thing is…you couldn’t see the strings to the puppets!!!
    (Dammit, I left my earplugs in the car)

  14. mcarp555 says:

    Vocals were almost always fed into a house P.A., so the quality of the mixer used (if any at all) would be dependent upon the venue. For some stops on various tours, they would use an independent audio company who would provide the P.A. system (amps, speakers, mixer, mics, etc.). But it would often depend on when the guy who ran the company could meet up with them. Having a dedicated audio crew for the whole tour was just not done in those days.

    You can see from the photos that the guitar/bass amps were rarely ever miced, so the band was forever pushing Vox to create bigger and more powerful amps. It’s laughable now to think of three 100-watt amps filling a baseball stadium, but that’s all they had. Splitting the signal with a DI box to send the signal to the amps and the P.A. wasn’t done because I don’t think they had passive DI boxes for live work at that time. And the amps didn’t have line out jacks, so you couldn’t get a signal from the preamps either. The amps almost certainly bled into the vocal mics, so that would be some small help, although the sound wouldn’t have been good.

    As for drums, the only mic I ever see is Ringo’s vocal, so that was probably it. When he wasn’t singing, that mic would pick up the cymbals, snare and rack tom. The kick might have bled into the front vocal mics, and the floor tom was left to fend for itself.

    And of course, no monitors. Levels might have been adjusted “on the fly” or perhaps with any opening acts. More probably not at all. Naturally, with TV or theater shows, it would have been easier to control the sound, usually with a dedicated house sound man who was used to the acoustics and the equipment, and rehearsals to set levels. Stadium shows were probably wild and wooly events, audio-wise.

  15. Kwai Chang says:

    Much appreciated.
    I think we can assert with certainty that LIVE performances have never been about music sounding good(or, even being heard). How could it? If the smallest venues(clubs) are about selling beer…then Beatle concerts were merely scaled-up merchandising experiments that were best accomplished by 30 minutes of mayhem disguised as musical performance. The ending of Let It Be(movie) would be a lot more ‘as nature intended’ had the group gone up on the roof and ripped through their Hollywood Bowl set list…complete with abbreviated Twist And Shout…at increased tempo and then outta here. Just like the old days…only this time, with the addition ambience of the wind and Mal’s arsenal of scaffold planks.
    (just keep the price down) and this time…under 30 minutes.
    Not a bad audition.

  16. mcarp555 says:

    Well, you could argue that the short time between 1964 and 1966 was the most difficult time to hear quality live performances ever. Pre-’64 music for the most part could be heard quite clearly, as there were few if any truly large gatherings to perform. Jazz acts in the Cavern wouldn’t need a lot of amplification, if any. Even the Hollywood bowl was built with acoustics in mind, and their modest (by today’s standards) P.A. was probably more than enough to get the job done.

    Post-’66 people had developed the tech to catch up to the huge volumes required. Larger amps, bigger P.A.s, and dedicated audiophiles who were up to the challenge of getting the music heard. You never hear much about not being able to hear the band in the late Sixties, and for those reasons. Hendrix, Cream, the Who, Led Zep, all seemed able to generate the sonic hammering needed to get their points across.

    The Beatles led that revolution, and like most trailblazers, suffered the most. Orville and Wilbur certainly didn’t have stewardesses, did they? The band created the need for the quality sound experience we have today, but as a group never got the chance to enjoy what they started.

  17. Tammy says:

    Excellent posts :-)

  18. Lizzie says:

    I agree, learning experiences!

  19. beatlejim55 says:

    Basically…it was turn the amps up to “10”…and away we go!!!

  20. Tammy says:

    It’s amazing to think how far concert technology leapt, just think, it was only ten years between the Beatles 1966 concets, and the Wings over America concerts, which were state of the art by 1976.

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