Discreet size and lightweight design of the d:vote™ 4099 Instrument Microphone provides extremely natural sound and high durability.
BackCountry Jazz is a non-profit organization dedicated to engaging the creative spirit, encouraging self-expression and stimulating academic performance of underserved youth in Bridgeport, Connecticut through high quality music programs. With a recent push to advance its music education program, the association was looking for a way to provide professional quality microphones to its students. Turning to DPA Microphones, the organization’s founder and internationally renowned tenor saxophonist Bennie Wallace selected the d:vote™ 4099 Instrument Mics for a critical mission — BackCountry Jazz’s annual fundraiser concert.

Serving as the kick off to the organization’s summer music camp, the benefit performance is just one of the many professional or student ensemble concerts that are held throughout the year. In addition to these events, the organization’s four d:vote™ Mics will be incorporated into classroom lessons during summer camp.

“We tried the mics out for the first time at sound check for the benefit concert, and the sound was just there pretty much immediately,” explains Wallace. “We didn’t have to worry about anything. The d:vote™ Mics really made a difference in the sound; and we’re very happy to have them for concerts and events moving forward. Knowing what we’re dealing with before we go in is really going to enhance the way we sound every time we play. The mics really simplify things and allow us to focus our attention on putting on a really great show.”

Wallace first discovered DPA from a sound engineer he worked with while on tour in Europe and was immediately impressed. “Through my own experience as a saxophonist, it was so much easier to play because the natural sound produced by the d:vote™ didn’t require me to work too hard,” adds Wallace. “After that performance, I immediately made it my goal to purchase some d:vote™ Mics for BackCountry Jazz and after speaking with the people at DPA, we were able to make that a reality.”

After introducing the mics at the concert, the DPA d:vote™ has added to its fan base. “From a piano player’s perspective, the mics are ideal because I can clip them around the piano so the audience can hear the different registers of the piano,” explains the organization’s pianist, Donald Vega. “Allowing them to hear all the colors and sounds from the band makes for a better overall concert experience.” Having top-of-the-line equipment, like DPA microphones, enables BackCountry Jazz to continue to produce professional quality jazz concerts, which in turn will raise much needed funding for the organization’s various programs. “Our BackCountry Jazz Summer Music Camp is a four-week, full-day summer music program for Bridgeport kids which is free to anyone with one year of instrumental musical training who wants to attend,” adds Wallace. “We produce a public school youth concert series during the academic year in which we invite high-profile jazz artists to perform for the students. Last year, we held a Billie Holiday program for 1,500 Bridgeport Public School students and the community at the University of Bridgeport Mertens Theater. We also have an after-school program throughout the school year and provide free instruments, workshops, master classes and one-on-one teaching. So, the funds that we raise — from the concert or other events — go towards our educational and cultural projects.”

Founded by tenor saxophonist Bennie Wallace in 2007, BackCountry Jazz’s mission is carried out through a commitment to music education. In addition to presenting outstanding concerts with major artists and rising jazz stars, BCJ aims to educate and inspire youth while celebrating, preserving and expanding the rich tradition of America’s art form, Jazz.


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