NILES, Ill. April 6, 2017—The 52nd Academy of Country Music Awards was broadcast live from T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas on Sunday night before a packed house of country music fans and a live CBS television audience. True to its storied history, this year’s awards show focused on live performance from country music royalty, spiced with a series of surprise vocal collaborations.
A veteran audio crew was enlisted by Dick Clark Productions to capture the live event audio. The broadcast team included production mixer J. Mark King, working from live feeds by music mixers Eric Schilling and Biff Dawes. Inside the venue, Jeff Peterson took the role of FOH music mixer, working alongside house production mixer Steve Anderson. The musicians’ in-ear mixes were provided by monitor mixers Mike Parker and Tom Pesa.
The backline supplier was ATK Audiotek, which provided most of the wireless systems and hardwired mics. Flawless wireless performance was the responsibility of RF coordinator Dave Bellamy of Las Vegas-based Soundtronics. Working exclusively with Shure PSM® 1000 in-ear monitoring systems while offering a variety of wireless microphones, Bellamy used his proven formula of reliable RF systems operating through a custom-tuned wireless antenna system with sophisticated frequency coordination. Performers are then able to use their preferred wireless microphones.
Returning hosts and Shure Endorsers Dierks Bentley and Luke Bryan used Axient® wireless mics for their live performances as well as their announcing duties, with Bryan on an SM58® mic and Bentley opting for the Beta® 58A version. AXT200/SM58 mics were also used by Tim McGraw and Faith Hill for their sensational duet performance.
Shure wireless was a common theme throughout the evening, with more than 55 channels of UHF-R® on hand for vocal and guitar duties. Microphone capsule choices ranged from Shure’s latest offerings to the legendary SM58. Miranda Lambert, who took home both Album of the Year and Female Vocalist of the Year awards, chose the KSM8 Dualdyne™ for her performance.
"One of the highlights of the show, for me, was Miranda Lambert with just her acoustic guitar and a wireless KSM8,” says music mixer Eric Schilling. “The clarity and natural sound of this microphone was front and center for all to appreciate."
The KSM8 was also the microphone of choice for nominees Keith Urban and Sam Hunt. Of course, several artists went with the classic SM58 capsule, including Shure Endorsers Luke Bryan, New Female Vocalist of the Year Maren Morris, and Rascal Flatts. The SM58 also powered performances by New Male Vocalist of the Year Jon Pardi and Vocal Duo of the Year Brothers Osborne.
For their performance, Vocal Group of the Year Little Big Town used a custom blend of Shure UHF-R wireless capsules, with Karen Fairchild and Jimi Westbrook on SM58, Kimberly Schlapman on Beta 87A, and Phillip Sweet on Beta 58A. Other Shure- driven performances included Beta 58A users Kelsea Ballerini and Brett Eldredge, while Old Dominion used the condenser KSM9HS.
Shure’s Nashville-based Artist Relations Manager Ryan Smith was on hand and thoroughly enjoyed the proceedings. “We really appreciate all the engineers and artists who chose Shure for their performances,” he says. “Our congratulations to newly-elected ACM president Pete Fisher, his staff, and the audio crew for delivering such an exciting show.”