Blink-182 Caught Using Teleprompter In Photo

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Blink-182 member Mark Hoppus was recently spotted using a teleprompter. However, some Blink-182 fans have argued that it is a custom drink stand.

Blink-182 uses teleprompter

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It has been noted that while there is an unspoken agreement between fans and performers, that the concert in front of them is “real” and being played in the moment, there’s also long been a confusion understanding that some portions may be more recorded than live.

Usage of backing tracks and teleprompter

In 2019 Nikki Sixx tweeted that Motley Crue has “used technology since ’87,” including sequences, backing vocal tracks and “sub tones” mixed into the overall sound. “We love it and don’t hide it. It’s a great tool to fill out the sound,” Sixx wrote.

Meanwhile, Platinum-selling Florida rockers Shinedown have also made full disclosure of their usage, with guitarist Zack Myers revealing to Rock Feed in 2020 that “90% of bands do it” and adding that, “it bothers me that it bothers people. … It’s the way it is … we want the sound to be the best it can. Could we go up there, just the four of us, and put on the best rock show ever? Of course. But that’s not how we wanna do it.”

Kiss also grabbed the headlines during a June concert in Antwerp, Belgium, when drummer Eric Singer made a mistake during “Detroit Rock City” that threw the performance out of sync and revealed an apparent vocal backing track when nobody was in front of a microphone.

Motley Crue guitarist Mick Mars, who’s retired from touring with the band, admitted on Eddie Trunk’s Hair Nation that he’s not fond of it either. “I have to say ’60s bands were my favorite, ’60s and ’70s bands because they were real … they just got up there and kicked it up. Made a mistake? So what? Sounded a little bit empty here or there? So what? … I could put on a Motley CD and play with it all day long. I don’t wanna do that.”

As per a sound mixer, the use of teleprompters, primarily by singers is frequent. “I don’t think that’s really cheating,” says a production manager.

“It’s just a reminder of where you’re at. It all started with cue cards on television – ‘What are you going to say next?’ Where’s the rule that says a rock band can’t have the same thing? Don’t symphony musicians get to use a music stand?”

Well, some bands let their teleprompters to be more visible than others. However, there seem to be fewer attempts to fully hide them anymore. They also allow bands to make switches in the setlist or to insert different songs that may not have been prepared during rehearsals.

It was useful to Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band for calling audibles and also when he would foray into the audience and return with signs requesting particular songs, which he’d call out on the spot.

“The guy controlling [the teleprompter] could call up the lyrics and put ’em on the screen, and we’d be able to do a good version of the song,” guitarist Nils Lofgren told this writer some years ago.

“I do see people very surprised that somebody has a teleprompter, but to me it’s insignificant,” says a sound mixer. “If anything, it works to the benefit of the show. They’re still playing live, and mostly from memory. It’s just a very useful aid.”