Creative Use of LEDs Can Avoid Lighting Excesses

in Tips & Tricks

Steve Comer, LD for Jackson Browne’s tour earlier this year, discussed the virtues of “lighting the music” and the artist’s all-LED touring rig. “I don’t like flashing-in-your-face lighting. At first, Jackson didn’t want any rotating gobos or strobes. He didn’t want light to be on cue; he wanted it to be music driven. He would tell the spotlight ops to turn them off, as he felt like a train was coming at him. Finally, we just cut spotlights three years ago.” Besides saving energy, Comer can pack more LED fixtures into his restricted eight feet of truck space. “I’m 100 percent LED on tour, although I do use the house front lights. I appreciate LEDs in a different way. Their intensities snap on. LEDs are more functional — you get more punch with LEDs. They have an extensive color palette and color intensity.” Working with an all-LED rig has also changed his perspective on how massive lighting rigs as a whole can be pared down. “I see shows with 200 lights in the rig, and only half of them would be on, and many were not used until the encore,” he says.

—From “Designer Watch” by Debi Moen, PLSN, Dec. 2012