Engineer Ken “Pooch” Van Druten

Engineer Ken “Pooch” Van Druten Mixes ‘Slash’ on Focal Monitors

Live & Studio Mix Engineer Moves Up to Focal Solo6 for Slash’s “Live From The Roxy” Online release


Engineer Ken "Pooch" Van Druten with Focal Solo 6

As a mix Engineer, Ken “Pooch” Van Druten divides his time between mixing front of house for top live rock acts and mixing releases in the studio, one of his latest studio mixing projects is the “Live From The Roxy” Slash online release. Van Druten is a three-time Grammy nominee, his latest as mixer for the 2010 ‘Best Hard Rock Performance’ nomination for “Linkin Park: Live at Milton Keynes.” No stranger to live rock, from Kiss, Limp Bizkit, System of a Down and Kid Rock to Slash, Van Druten has worked with almost every top hard rock act touring in the past 20 years, mixing FOH or monitors, or as the production/tour manager.

On the live Slash mixes, Van Druten made a switch to Focal Solo6 monitors. “I actually own several types of high-end speakers. All of them are now my second choice,” states Van Druten. “I still use them for reference, but I mix on the Focal Solo6s now.” He mixed stereo (as well as a 5.1 surround version) for the Slash online release, “This was the first time I used Solo6s for a project. It came out spectacularly. I was really impressed by these speakers.”

“What I found most interesting with the Solo6s was the amount of time I could spend mixing without getting fatigued,” adds Van Druten. “I can usually only spend several hours before I have to take a long break. But do to the excellent reference of the Solo6s I was able to listen at lower volumes and not get fatigued, whilst the mix reference remained correct. Thus allowing for many more hours of work and expediting the whole process.”

Having studio mixes still sound good outside the studio is the key to a good reference monitor, Van Druten heard success from the Solo6s, “I often listen in three different places: my car, my home theater system and my computer – with and without external speakers. The Slash mixes traveled well from one to another,” he said. “I was initially afraid that the low-end information would be not accurate with the Solo6s. I have used other monitors in the past that have given me excellent reference of highs and mids and found the low end to be completely inaccurate while listening elsewhere. I found the Solo6s to be very accurate while traveling to other reference speakers. What you put in to the Solo6s, you get out: VERY accurate.”

Van Druten says both Slash, and the record label management heard the mixes on their own reference systems. “For the songs that I mixed there were only two mix changes I was asked to do, and both of those were minor. I was very happy with the results.”

He also used the Focal sub-woofer with the Solo6 speakers, describing it as “very accurate.” He continues, “I am always worried about using an external sub-woofer. Most people don’t tune their home theater systems correctly and usually turn the external sub way too loud. I did not want to fool myself into thinking the low end was right, when it wasn’t. But after listening to my mixes in several different situations I knew the sub was great.”

“I have played the Slash mixes for many people and they all think they are great – and of course give me all the credit. They don’t know that my secret weapon was the Solo6s.” Spoken with a true hard rock attitude, Van Druten says, “I love my new Focal Solo6s and you will have to pry them from my cold dead hands in order to take them away from me!”

To reach Ken “Pooch” Van Druten and see more information about his credits visit:

One of Van Druten’s ‘Live From The Roxy’ Slash mixes can be heard on the video track “By The Sword” on Slash’s website: By The Sword – Live at the Roxy

For more on Focal Solo6 please visit: (choose the ‘Focal Professional’ link)

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