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RapcoHorizon Hits The Stage With Jay-Z
Award-Winning Rapper’s Guitar/Bass and Keyboard Techs Rely on Custom Cable Runs for Magna Carter World Tour
JACKSON, MO, FEBRUARY 5, 2014 - Thanks to RapcoHorizon, an RHC Holdings brand and leading manufacturer of audio/video interfacing and cable equipment, the instrumentals for Jay-Z’s Magna Carter World Tour are making the connection with his audiences night after night, while on stage. As the instrument and speaker cable of choice for the tour, which supports the award-winning rapper’s first new album in four years, the RapcoHorizon cables were custom fitted to accommodate the intricate rigs, some of which are on 28-foot-high risers.
As all RapcoHorizon cables are designed for the working musician, the custom instrument and speaker cables are road ready and tour tough, employing the most rugged constructions without sacrificing sound quality. The custom cables created by the company for the tour include runs as long as 50- to 100-feet in order to not only reach across the stage, but also above.
“With guitar, bass, and keyboard player, Clay Sears, up 28-feet in the air, 22-feet above Jay-Z, I had to have instrument and speaker cables that were able to handle the degradation that happens from that distance,” says A.J. “Jukebox” Srybnik, guitar and bass tech for the Magna Carter World Tour. “These cables work just like they are three feet long. I know that in talking to my monitor engineers and FOH guys, they’re just ecstatic with the tones we are getting, and I don’t think it’s necessarily from all the gear, but rather from the cables. I have a lot of runs that go in different lengths, and you’d think my sound would be inhibited, but it’s not. The cables are so dependable.”
“I'm thrilled to be working with RapcoHorizon,” says Benjamin Jacobs, keyboard tech and backline crew chief for the tour. “These cables outperform every other brand we’ve tried. We recently did a one-off date in Abu Dhabi and my cable looms, which are comprised of the RapcoHorizon cables, were one of the only pieces of our permanent touring gear that I brought along.”
In addition to the unique audio rigs, the Magna Carter World Tour also has extensive load outs, with gear on four different risers and at various heights. With the speed at which the tour moves between stops, and the amount of gear being used, the cables are quite often yanked from the equipment by stagehands, which can sometimes be detrimental.
“We unplug every keyboard, speaker and amp, and push everything away very quickly,” continues Srybnik. “You’d think that everyday I’d have a broken cable or connector, but that hasn’t been the case. I haven’t had to go into the spare cable case once this entire tour. We don’t have a normal load out. It’s the craziest thing I’ve ever seen, it’s literally like ants attacking a sugar hill. But we haven’t had any problems and I think that has to do with the strain release and the stuff they coat the cables with, it’s very durable. The coating on the speaker cables is also gorgeous – a really nice blue and silver that stands out nicely on the floor, which keeps people from tripping on them.”
All cables from The RapcoHorizon Company are designed to work perfectly no matter how often they are put to use. Another benefit of the RapcoHorizon cables is their ability to coil nicely. The quality of the cables and flexible jacket ensure that they not only lay flat on stage, but also roll up easily without causing bends.
Srybnik also admits that his rig isn’t the most complicated on the tour and that Jacobs uses nearly three times as many instrument cables as him. “He’s got probably 30 keyboards all doing stereo runs, so you’re looking at 60 runs, and these cables get beat up the most. Any time he has a problem, it ends up being an outboard problem or some other audio issue. It never comes back as a bad cable, which is funny because that’s what you always used to hear – ‘swap out the cable, it’s bad’ – you’re just not hearing that anymore.”
As an avid RapcoHorizon enthusiast that has used the company’s cables on tour with a variety of artists, such as Selena Gomez, Foreigner and Buckcherry, Srybnik is also impressed with the customer service that he is afforded. In the case of the Jay-Z tour, his custom cables were completed on short notice after the audio rigs were moved from the ground to the air.
“The best part about it all is that I was in a jam when we changed the audio rigs and The RapcoHorizon Company bailed me out,” he adds. “It’s amazing that they were able to get me a high-quality cable that sounds the way I want, pretty much whenever I need. They have the best customer service for touring crews, and this situation emphasizes that.”
RHC Holdings, located in Jackson, Missouri, is one of the world’s largest manufacturers and suppliers of audio, video, home theater, data and telecommunications interfacing products. Comprising RapcoHorizon, Momentum, Pro Co, Pro Co Data, RAT, RoadHog and StageMASTER, each RHC Holdings brand has developed a reputation in many industries for reliability, and superior sound performance. Used worldwide by concert touring sound companies, video and sound contractors, recording studios, system integrators, audiophiles and musicians, the company’s products provide optimal flexibility and premium performance. RHC Holdings also has a state-of-the-art Custom Shop to modify existing products or build new devices to meet any need.