FOH engineer Brian Ruggles has been mixing Billy Joel’s live shows ever since the singer-songwriter came on the scene in 1971 with his Cold Spring Harbor LP. Now, more than half a century later, he continues to collaborate with the iconic artist, including mixing Joel’s multi-year, record-breaking, one-show-a-month residency at Manhattan’s Madison Square Garden.
The last eight years of that partnership have found Ruggles mixing the Piano Man’s shows on a DiGiCo SD5 console. The SD5 meets Ruggles’ needs for a console that can offer him the kind of warm sound that he grew up with using analogue desks throughout most of Joel’s lengthy career and on tours with artists like Stevie Nicks, Heart, and John Mellencamp. Meanwhile, Josh Weibel, Joel’s monitor engineer, finds that his DiGiCo SD10 console gives him the flexibility he needs to manage the changing lineup of the residency shows and fly dates.