DPA’s d:dicate™ 4011 Solutions Build a Bridge Between Studio and Live Sound.
With over 35 years of playing, performing and recording experience, renowned saxophonist George Shelby has been on stage with a vast array of artists. He has recorded and/or performed live with Beyoncé, Stevie Wonder, Earth Wind & Fire, Bruce Springsteen, Sting, Elton John, and many more. When Shelby joined legendary Phil Collins for his Not Dead Yet - Live! tour, he made sure to bring along his trusted d:dicate™ 4011 Cardioid Microphone from DPA.

While at the NAMM show this past year, Shelby met the DPA team and discussed his live and in-studio mic needs. “I tried out the d:dicate™ 4011A in the studio and it instantly became one of my favorite mics,” he say. “I kept playing on and off microphone because the response was so true that I couldn’t believe that was my sound coming out of the speakers. With the MMP-A mic preamp that came with the MMC4011 capsule, the sound was just fantastic. It’s one of those situations where I am happy with what I hear because it gives me my sound without any color.”

For live use, the solution had to be unobtrusive and clipped on the saxophone to provide freedom of movement. With DPA’s modular d:dicate system, Shelby paired his 4011 capsule with DPA’s MMP-G preamp - fitting most wireless systems - and the GSM4000 Gooseneck Shock Mount in the sax clip (STC4099). “Once I tried the MMP-G, it solved all my problems when playing live,” says Shelby. “This d:dicateTM 4011 solution exceeds expectations. There are a couple of saxophone features with Phil Collins where the tone on the horn becomes incredibly important. Phil’s FOH engineer and I went through several mics before we landed on the d:dicateTM 4011 with the G-preamp. I’m always looking to get the most natural sound I can on stage and the d:dicateTM 4011 solution is by far the best sounding of all of the mics we tried.”
One of Shelby’s biggest apprehensions, prior to using the d:dicateTM 4011 with the MMP-G and GSM400 live on stage, was flexibility. “It’s always a concern when using a small mic, because you usually sacrifice something in quality, especially on the low end,” says Shelby. “With this d:dicateTM  4011 solution, that was not the case. Alto sax can be a very bright instrument on its own and I was sensitive to not add any top or brightness, and just get a true representation of the sound. The d:dicateTM   4011 totally did that for me.”

The modularity of the d:dicateTM  4011-series has also allowed Shelby to easily transition from a live mic to a studio mic while on tour. “As a touring musician, I have been recording on the road in between shows,” adds Shelby. “With the d:dicateTM  4011, I simply pop the capsule onto the longer MMP-A mic preamp and it becomes my go-to studio mic. It’s not only satisfying my needs on stage, but when I’m back in my room, I have a mic that sounds fantastic for remote recording. The bottom line is that no matter where I am in the world, people are going to expect quality recording and the d:dicateTM  4011 delivers that.”

With a break after Collins’ tour ended, Shelby stayed in Europe and did a series of clinics and master classes for Yamaha, where he continued to use the d:dicateTM  4011. Shelby has released several CDs with his own group, and continues to perform at jazz festivals around the world, including Montreal, Montreux, Monterey, Tokyo, Manila, Nice and Paris.

“The great thing about DPA d:dicateTM microphones is that it is a modular system,” he concluded. “You can screw the mic onto the larger A-preamp or the smaller bell mounted G-preamp, and then you just pop on your attachment for whatever wireless unit you have. Most importantly, the mic sounds fantastic both on tour and in the studio.”


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