This blog had been provided by Steve McClean, founder of Steve's Trax Backing Tracks.
I decided to pursue a music career in the early 80's having played piano and keyboards from a young age. At this time, many club and pub singers were playing backing tracks via audio cassette tape, and it became increasingly apparent that a new format was required to enable quick selection of tracks, with a durability that exceeded that of cassette tape. Music was changing rather rapidly at this time and a great many clubs in the UK found themselves struggling to pay the wages of their backing musicians. As a result, a large number of singers who had been accustomed to singing with a band, with the show fronted by a resident compere, were now having to rely on using backing tracks and their own PA equipment (known in the trade as self-contained).
Although there was a good back catalogue of classic chart songs, many of these had been produced solely on cassette tape, the nature of which meant that tracks would not last very long or be subject to sound problems inherent with constant playing, pausing and rewinding of an audio cassette. There was certainly a need to supply the gigging artist with a format that would last a great deal of time, whilst providing a professional studio quality sound, one that would bridge the gap between the many emerging fun karaoke tracks that were becoming readily available around that time.
Once the company was formed, our focus was to ensure that a singer or band member could perform with music that faithfully followed the original song, and that the track must be produced with a professional ending (as most karaoke tracks were subject to a fade-out ending, similar to those aired by radio stations, and were quite unsuitable to use for a proper fee-paying gig). Music formats have changed quite a bit in this short time - cassette tape, minidisc, CD and MP3 have all been mainstays of the well established gigging performer.
Throughout our blog you'll see information for new singers regarding starting work, setting up equipment, equipment choice, stage presentation, song choice and microphone technique - hints, tips and advice which we have picked up along our travels. We hope that you find some of the information useful.
There are also a few fun sections regarding song and band trivia. To the best of our knowledge this information is correct, however it is just for fun - and we hope you enjoy!