LEDsynergy adds colour to McBusted tour
When the new supergroup McBusted announced that it was going to tour the UK in Spring 2014 they wanted something visually spectacular, so approached LEDsynergy, via SimS custom guitars, to build five LED encrusted guitars to be a key visual element of each stage performance.
Not content to have dot-marker LEDs positioned on the neck of their guitars, that had been done before, McBusted wanted the entire body of each guitar also encrusted. The three lead and two bass guitars were developed and tested in around five weeks and delivered well before final rehearsals and the opening performance just prior to Easter.
Ultra compact SMD LEDs were used as they are both lightweight and cost effective; having all the colours within the same thin ‘chip-bulbs’. These were positioned just 10mm apart and programmed to not only display a myriad of colours but also produce moving patterns and even full colour images.
“The real challenge was to work out how to position each individual LED in a continuous series on the body of the complex shaped guitars so that we could then identify and address each separate chip-bulb,” explained Jeremy Harwood of LEDsynergy. “And we then had to set about writing the bespoke computer programme that would control them and deliver the required effects. LED technology is constantly evolving and we operate right on the cutting edge when it comes to pioneering design and implementation. We’ve produced a variety of innovative display boards and creative systems to meet the demanding requirements for a host of customers but the guitars are one of the more complex designs we’ve been involved in recently and to our knowledge nothing like this has ever been done before.”
Each of the guitars is connected wirelessly to the main DMX lighting control panel which also drives the stage lighting for the entire show and can be synchronised to produce a host of effects . The guitars are individually powered by battery packs, worn by the artists and they provide over four hours of continuous use – enough for a full set on the night and any encores.
SimS is an English company that has built finished many of the finest electric guitars & basses and has worked tirelessly to bring together the electric guitar dreams of customers that include Brian May, Keith Richards, Hank Marvin and Bono.
For more than 10 years the energetic McFly and Busted were both highly successful ‘boy’ bands, amassing a total of 27 top ten singles between them to date. During McFly’s 10th anniversary concert at the Royal Albert Hall in September 2013, James Bourne and Matt Willis of Busted joined the McFly line-up (Dougie Poynter, Tom Fletcher, Danny Jones and Harry Judd) on stage for a few songs. The crowd’s reaction was so positive that they consequently planned a UK tour. Pre-sale tickets for the original 11 shows went on sale mid November and sold out within minutes, so a further 23 additional dates were subsequently added including McBusted headlining the British Summer Time Hyde Park Festival on 6 July 2014.